Many Organizations are in a Race to the Bottom : How Can You Avoid Their Fate?

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You are surrounded by marginal thinkers. You can do better.

One way of doing this is avoiding the negative-think that those who are not racing to the future fall prey to. Here’s the thing – many organizations prefer to keep a blind eye towards the future. Complacency rules; the status quo is the only objective. A mindset that the boat should not be rocked drives the mindset forward! People are on autopilot, doing the same thing over and over again. An organizational sclerosis settles in, smothering any potential for success.

Is that your organization? Probably. If so, I have a simple message for you.

Stop it.

Go through this list. What issues are you or your organization suffering from? These are the things you need to avoid to avoid racing in a fall to the bottom.

You fall into the trap of avoiding reality:

  • you don’t want to talk about the reality of the disruptive change that you are faced with
  • you don’t want to challenge your team to think about the big, bold steps they need to be thinking about to get ahead in the era of acceleration
  • you don’t want to acknowledge the new competition and new challenges that surround you

You let complacency rule your day:

  • you don’t think it is important to wake people out of their complacent slumber, thinking that tomorrow is going to be exactly like it is today
  • you don’t want to talk about the opportunities that come from building an effective, collaborative, globally cooperative team

You avoid some of the issues related to the change occurring around you:

  • you don’t want to think about why agility, flexibility and fast response are critical success factors to survive and thrive tomorrow
  • you don’t want to focus on why customer oriented innovation is redefining your markets and redefining your product, and you don’t want to know why it is a critical wellspring for success
  • you don’t want to talk about what you need to do to reinvent your product or service lines to keep up with the fact that what you currently sell is becoming old and obsolete

You prefer to not discuss the important issues:

  • you prefer to keep your staff and leadership team in the dark about the business model change occurring all around you
  • you prefer not to acknowledge that maybe your current strategies might not work so well going forward into this fast, disruptive future

You aren’t prepared to discuss how quickly things are changing:

  • you don’t want to understand how the pace of technological change now defines the future of your industry, and why your ability to align to Silicon Valley velocity is critical
  • you don’t want to know what other companies are doing to ensure that IT is not just an infrastructure for transactions. but the lifeblood of your future

You don’t want to acknowledge that you are lacking in critical skills and capabilities:

  • you don’t want an in-depth appreciation of why your ability to access critical skills through innovation partnerships will become an increasingly important focus for success
  • you don’t want to understand why your ability to form fast, cross functional teams might just be the most important thing you can do

You have a structure that guarantees you will die of organizational sclerosis:

  • you have a committee making key decisions , and you are willing to let the decision sink to the lowest common denominator that will have the worst impact
  • you think that mediocrity is OK, a race to the bottom is a good race to be in, and it’s better to keep your people feeling comfortable and complacent rather than being somewhat scared and deadly motivated

You aren’t prepared to admit that your past legacy is rather meaningless in today’s disruptive economy

  • you think that Kodak, Blackberry, Blockbuster, Sears, Motorola had awesome, sustainable world class business strategies
  • you prefer not to know what world class innovators are doing to keep up with the era of acceleration.

You could just keep doing what you are doing.

Or, not.


THE FUTURE BELONGS TO THOSE WHO ARE FAST features the best of the insight from Jim Carroll’s blog, in which he
covers issues related to creativity, innovation and future trends.