How we think about change is stuck in the past. Judging by the way we organize, there are those who would like to keep it that way. We need to think differently about how we organize for change. And we need to change our organizations.
There are few terms that have the same unbridled acceptance in business as “best practices.” Except that, for many organizations, best practices fail to deliver on the theoretical promise implied by the term. Best implies one superior way of working, where in reality there are many practices dependent upon many different things.
Disruption has become sexy, and the idea of disruptive innovation has come to dominate (and begin to spread beyond) startup culture. Nonetheless, execution and exploitation have their place as well. We need to organize in a way that accommodates both.
Virtually my entire career has been, in one way or another, focussed on the creation of change. I am not a status-quo kind of guy. What I’ve learned about realizing strategy and managing change in organizations.
I got into an interesting debate with a colleague a little while ago over lunch, about whether or not processes are relevant when organizations are starting out. The specific basis of this debate was a discussion around the business model canvas framework described in Business Model Generation, which I’ve been writing a lot about.
How much guidance do we need for a model to actually be useful? The very value of models is that they are abstractions. They provide ways of taking complex situations and simplifying them through structure, categories and labels. They make the infinite shades of grey a little bit more black and white.