Issue Processing Starts in the Amygdala

Fundamentally, Business Process Triaging is issue processing on steroids. It very structured, very fast, and very focused on the behaviors and events that inhibit an enterprise”s Driveshaft process from sustaining a required level of performance.  That said, issue processing is like a rifle cartridge — the bullet encased in a propellant-filled shell.  The ability to process an issue can be pointed at about anything, but process triaging is the rifle barrel that directs it to the best target.


In Business Process Triaging, the bullet that obliterates the issue (the target), is of four types — Analyze, Design, Train and/or Enforce Something — typically a best practice or technology.  So far, so good.

So, where do the issues — the targets originate?

We see them as issues in the center of the brain, at the top of the brain stem, in a region called the Amygdala.  This is the seat of memory and emotions, where the brain recognizes something it’s observed before and attaches an emotional response.  If the stimulus is threatening enough, it becomes an issue.  If it’s intense enough, it can spread to the brain stem (Medulla Oblongata) and trigger a fight or flight response.

All that to say, if one wants to engage the analytical powers of the brain to address the issue, we need to move the thought out of the amygdala to the cerebral frontal cortex — to our issue processor.


We do this by asking an amazingly simple question:  “How often does this happen?”  We empower our frontal cortex to seize the issue by its throat by asking it to count it. How many?  How often?  Where?  Quantify it, please.

This is the theory behind why a Process Point-of-Pain, in triaging, is always a measurement of a recurring event or behavior that inhibits a process’s performance.  Why it’s never a resource constraint — we haven’t processed it that far yet.