Importance of feedback

image showing houses located near river bank

Last month, I attended an online seminar by Prof. John Carrier from MIT, where he discussed an interesting case study. I would love to share it with all of you. Here it goes…

In many places, the river passes through the city. A study revealed, that the houses located next to the river bank had lower electricity bills compared to those situated away from the river banks.

Here you may pause to ponder about the possible reasons for this finding.

The reason was that houses constructed near river banks do not have a basement. Usually, the electricity meters are installed in the basement but residents of these houses had no option other than installing the electricity meter near the front gate. This change caused them to sample/see the meter readings more times than the residents of houses located away from the river bank (as their meters were installed in the basement). Change in the location of the electricity meter provided real-time feedback helping the riverside residents to use electricity more judiciously; resulting in lesser electricity bills.
It is a classic example of how feedback is useful in improving system’s/organisation’s efficiency.

Feedback is essential!

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