Friday, 26 March 2010

The Coming of Change (but not as we know it).

While reading Dan Brown’s book The Lost Symbol and the reference to “ORDO AB CHAO”, I was relating this back to my belief that, when things emerge from the chaos, they do so because innovation exists.

To reference Gary Hamel’s quote “Somewhere out there is a bullet with your Company’s name on it. Somewhere out there is a competitor, unborn and unknown, that will render your strategy obsolete. You can’t dodge the bullet. You are going to have to shoot first. You are going to have to out-innovate the innovators”. Today, as we view the business’s environmental challenges, we can realistically say that the World of Business is at a Tipping Point and, unless business leaders adopt the appropriate strategies that will change their perilous course, the forecast is grim. As we look into the future, there is a black hole that will undoubtedly suck a large number of businesses into oblivion and challenge those who remain to deal with change like we have never encountered it before.

We have heard about the need for change, we have listened to educators and futurists telling us about the need to embrace change and to learn how to deal with ambiguity and the speed of change. All of this has been built on the premise that we were anchored in the present and that we can incrementally manage the transition, and educate ourselves to adapt and reshape. However, I believe many of these scenarios are flawed, and that those who apply innovation and change to their current systems, applications, models and people are building upon the old world thinking and are doomed to failure. My belief is that the chaos theory needs to be applied to our business models and practices to achieve an organisational paradigm that will represent the next step in the collective evolution to the next practice business. I contend that chaos intrapreneurs are the new wave’s crafters of next generation business models. Organisations should adapt and embrace ambiguity and chaos because that's where the room is for innovation.

Let me leave you with the example of Google. What is amazing about a company like Google for example is that it continues to innovate using what is described as a "spaghetti method of product development (toss against wall, see if sticks)”, requiring all engineers to spend at least 20% of their time on new ideas.


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