Art and Science are often viewed as opposite ends of the educational spectrum that have nothing to do with each other. Science is objective, theoretical, and rooted in proof while Art is subjective, conceptual, and doesn’t require proof. Although they are very distinct fields, they can complement each other beautifully. Most of my formal education leaned to the science side, but I’ve grown more and more to appreciate the value of the arts. I’ve regularly incorporated artistic skills and techniques into my scientific endeavors to make them better.
Most of my professional life has been a blend of art and science. As an operations research analyst (i.e., applied mathematician), there’s an art to building effective mathematical models. Sometimes you have to come up with creative ways to build and combine equations to accurately reflect real life. As a consultant, people valued my scientific know how coupled with my interpersonal skills. The ability to communicate well (verbally and orally) is seen as a clear asset, particularly for those with scientific backgrounds, and definitely falls more in the realm of art than science.
My approach as a business adviser and coach is no different – I continue to mesh art and science. On the science side, I use a very rigorous business assessment process to help my clients comprehensively evaluate their business in the areas of business planning, finance, sales and marketing, operations, and personnel. The art is being able to hone in on and address my client’s mindset. I have to be able to see when mindset issues are getting in the way of business performance and their general happiness.
I think it’s important to deal with the mindset issues to enhance the business and the journey of entrepreneurship. Bringing in this ‘artistic’ side was a primary motivator for me undertaking life coach training (which I completed under Martha Beck). As a small business owner myself, I know that the personal and business lives of a small business owner are typically very intertwined, and I wanted to be able to deal with that in a real and productive way.
Art and Science may be polar opposites, but they balance each other and blend to create immense value in many different situations. How do you blend Art and Science?