5 Versatile Models to Get Started
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Feeling overwhelmed? Not sure where to start on your Mental Model journey? Think of this as your 'Mental Model Starter Pack.' These five deceptively simple Mental Models are highly versatile and powerful, making them top picks as you begin and grow your personal Latticework of Mental Models

A quick aside in case this is your entry point into ModelThinkers. This site is all about empowering you to be smarter, faster — and achieving that by helping you to collect and combine mental models into a dynamic latticework. That said, here are 5 models to get you stared. 

  • Pareto Principle 
  • Inversion 
  • Occam's Razor
  • Compounding
  • Feedback Loops

Let's dive into each in a little more and be sure to follow the links to explore them in more detail, including seeing their suggested actionable takeaways.

By the way, become a member today to save Mental Models to your latticework; add notes; and even commit them to memory using our Learn function. 


In our world of growing complexity, this Mental Model was an obvious inclusion. It's a reminder to identify assumptions, simplify, and start from the basics, rather than getting lost in the mess. It's the Model that helps you breathe through overwhelm and cut to the core of what's at stake and what needs to be considered.

This is my most used mental model. From cleaning the kitchen, delivering a keynote, consulting, or building ModelThinkers, I'm constantly asking myself, 'what's the 20 effort that will deliver the 80 impact?' There are other prioritisation models but the simplicity of this one means that it is a must in any latticework.

Who knew that avoiding having a crappy day was not only easier than having a brilliant one — but that it also led to similar results? Inversion is an extremely flexible Model that makes it a perfect combination with many others. You can even combine it with the Pareto Principle.

Supposedly called 'the eighth wonder of the world' by Einstein, compounding and creating exponential growth through consistent marginal gains is a truly powerful model. Use it for personal growth and change of any kind. Also, apply it to ModelThinkers by signing up to our elist and drip feed Models to your inbox.

Inspired by the Scientific Method, the feedback loop allows you to gain an ongoing reality check to inform your action. Use it in communication, creating a business, in agile practices, developing skills and any potentially complex situation. Pay attention and you'll see how this model keeps popping up everywhere!


That's my version of a Mental Model starter pack - filled with models that will likely appear in a seasoned entrepreneur's latticework, just as they would in a novice Model Thinker.  

What Mental Model starter pack would you suggest? Please add your comments below. 

Share this Playbook with your network to be smarter, faster, together!
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