Por Mauro Rebelo

Recognizing categories is easier than gradients

[Por que] The human brain is a pattern recognition machine and we are much better at recognizing categories than gradients (have you read Leonard Mlodinow’s ‘Subliminal’?). This is why we are so inefficient at estimating how many ‘hours’ it will take us to complete a task, but we are very efficient at saying ‘this task is going to be harder than that one’. The human brain is also an eternal bounty hunter: every time you achieve something, you get a dose of endorphins, dopamine or serotonin, which are the chemical names for what we call… pleasure. pleasure. Not achieving goals, on the other hand, leads to depression due to the lack of these chemicals. The brain is also in a hurry and doesn’t like to exchange a small pleasure in the present for a big pleasure in the future. After all, “What will tomorrow be like? Answer who can?”

That’s why [O Que] dividing larger tasks into smaller ones helps [Quem] you (and the company) [Para que] to do more tasks, faster, with more pleasure.

[Como] When dividing tasks into sub-tasks, a fundamental criterion is the degree of challenge. For a task to be motivating, it has to have the right degree of challenge. If it’s too easy, we lose motivation. If it’s too hard, we lose motivation. This makes the definition of a challenge subjective, because what is easy or difficult for each person depends on their experience, skills and competencies.

[Como] Organizing categories on a scale can be a great substitute for a gradient. After all, remembering whether your clothing size is ‘small’, ‘medium’ or ‘large’ is easier than remembering the measurements, in centimeters, of your chest, waist, shoulder and the distance between your abdomen and neck. The Fibonacci Sequence is a great way to categorize tasks by degree. This is because the sequence is not continuous and the interval between two numbers increases with the value of the number, creating ‘categories’ of different values that can be easily associated. It doesn’t matter if the category is challenge, effort, difficulty, complexity, cost… you’ll be able to assign a Fibonacci degree to it that will allow you to easily classify a task.