Outrun Change

We need to learn quickly to keep up with the massive change around us so we don't get run over. We need to outrun change.

Archive for the tag “change management”

The overwhelming change you feel today is going to increase. Engage the change.

Image courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com before they closed their doors.

Image courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com before they closed their doors.

The massive volumes of change you see surrounding you everywhere you look isn’t going to stop. In fact the pace of change is going to increase.

Each of us have a choice. Either figure out how to cope with and embrace the change or ignore it.

The cost of ignoring massive change is that you and your organization will get left behind. That doesn’t just mean you will be a laggard as you continue doing next month what you did last year. Instead that means your organization will radically shrink and before you know it, will disappear.

The downsides are serious. There is an upside and it is exciting.

Four articles I’ve seen lately focus the mind. While these articles are written in either the accounting or church context, they also fully apply in the church and accounting context. They also apply to every individual and organization.

This article will be posted across all my blogs because it applies to all of them.

7/7 – Bill Sheridan at LinkedIn – Embrace change or resist it: Only one option is viable.

The odds are really high that tax preparation will be completely automated in the next two decades. Estimated odds are almost as high that both accounting and auditing will be fully automated.

Consider my business and my core tasks of auditing charities. There is a real possibility those types of audits could be heavily automated in 10 or 15 or 20 years. I am not old enough to bank on retiring before that massive change starts eating away the entire audit profession.

Automation will take over an increasing number of tasks. The world of tax, accounting, and audit will be affected. Mr. Sheridan explains the shelf life of education and experience we have is shrinking.

As the Maryland Association of CPAs routinely points out our learning needs to be greater than the rate of change; L>C is their formula.

Read more…

When we think through an issue far enough to develop a considered opinion, that gives us a bias that everyone else is wrong.

Image courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

Image courtesy of DollarPhotoClub.com

Ponder the implications for how you look at the world:

When you have developed a perspective or opinion or conclusion on some issue after having thought through all the relevant factors, there is a serious danger that reaching such a conclusion leaves you thinking that anyone with a different perspective is incorrect.

If your carefully drawn, considered opinion is reasonable, then the inference is that other opinions aren’t reasonable.

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A long term perspective on the turmoil and change we see around us – The best primer I’ve seen.

The two best articles I’ve read that explain the massive shifts we are seeing in the economy were from Walter Russell Mead back in June 2011. Those articles put much in perspective and give a hint at a way forward. They were foundational to me starting to focus on the radical change taking place all around us.

The Death of the American Dream I compares the painful transition away from family farms to a suburban home funded with a cheap mortgage and paid by working a life-time job. We are now transitioning away from the model that has been in place since everyone reading this was a child. It will be painful, just as the disappearance of the family farm was painful.

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Simple, Complicated, Complex, Chaotic – a way to make sense – part 4

Previous posts introduced the simple/complicated/complex/chaotic quadrants of the Cynefin Framework and discussed how that can be used to analyze development issues.

(This discussion is cross-posted from my other blog, Nonprofit Update. I’ll put them on this blog as well because the Cynefin Framework is quite helpful for understanding the messy world around us.)

Implications for economics

This framework has huge implications for discussions of economic issues. So many areas come to mind that are actually complex but we treat them as if they are complicated.

Take just one issue – minimum wage.

If this is a complicated issue, then to make life better for people, we can just increase the minimum wage. Go to $8. Maybe $10.

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Simple, Complicated, Complex, Chaotic – a way to make sense – part 3

Previous posts introduced the Cynefin framework and described a bit of how it helps make sense.

Where it gets messy

Distinguishing between the complicated and complex quadrants is the biggest challenge.

As I ponder the Cynefin framework, I realize that distinction is the cause of many heated differences of opinion.

(This series of articles is cross-posted from my other blog, Nonprofit Update. I’ll put them on this blog as well because the Cynefin Framework is quite helpful for understanding the messy world around us.)

It is also the cause of many unintended consequences. I’ve talked about that a lot on my blogs.

Applying the solutions from the complicated quadrant to issues in the complex quadrant is the conceptual cause of most of the harm from those unintended consequences.

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Simple, Complicated, Complex, Chaotic – a way to make sense – part 2

Previous post introduced the four quadrants of the Cynefin Framework: simple, complicated, complex, and chaotic.

One of the major implications of the framework is to highlight that the world is not neatly ordered.

In addition, leadership styles need to change based on the nature of the situation.

(This series of articles is cross-posted from my other blog, Nonprofit Update. I’ll put them on this blog as well because the Cynefin Framework is quite helpful for understanding the messy world around us.)

Boundaries

The boundaries in moving between quadrants, from simple to complicated to complex to chaotic, are fuzzy. Situations can blend from one to another.

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Simple, Complicated, Complex, Chaotic – a way to make sense – part 1

For the last week I’ve been pondering a new tool to help understand the world around me. It’s called a sense-making model by its inventor.

The Cynefin Framework was developed by David Snowden. It’s pronounced cunevin or ku-nev’-in.

This series of posts will give an overview, provide two links to videos, and apply the model to several areas.

(This discussion is cross-posted from my other blog, Nonprofit Update. I’ll put them on this blog as well because the Cynefin Framework is quite helpful for understanding the messy world around us.)

The model has four quadrants. The primary driver is how the relationship between cause and effect changes based on the nature of the situation.

Simple

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“The best way to predict the future is to create it”

Philosiblog expands that idea in a post of the same name.

Using the analogy of riding a river shows we have a major role to play in our future. We can even create our future.

Think of two people in a river. One is just floating on a raft, unable to predict what is coming, because they aren’t looking around and aren’t doing anything to move or steer. The other person is in a kayak, looking for the path they want, and actively steering and moving themselves to that point. Read more…

If you don’t know something, it is so easy to look it up

Several times recently I was wondering about the meaning of a phrase in common use. Spent a couple of minutes searching the ‘net and learned.

When I get a cold call from a potential client, first thing I do is check out their website and browse the 990. Then I return the call.

It is so easy to get simple information.

That’s the whole point of the post from Seth Godin earlier this week. In his post, The curious imperative, he says: Read more…

10 ways to encourage change

Writing at Harvard Business Review, Morten Hansen offers Ten Ways to Get People to Change. As I’ve heard for many years, it is less a matter of forcing change and more a matter of creating the environment to encourage change.

Some of his ideas I found particularly appealing:

Embrace the power of one

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5 internal obstacles that block social media progress

What can get in the way of developing a social media platform in your organization?

The Social Media Minefield: Five factors blocking your success is a great post by Mark Schaefer describing five obstacles.

The takeaway is you need to figure out the obstacles in your organization to developing a social media platform. Then you can figure out a plan to remove them.

He sees five very common obstacles routinely encountered in organizations: Read more…

Try a new thing three times before you decide whether you like it

Try a thing you haven’t done three times.

Once, to get over the fear of doing it.

Twice, to learn how to do it.

And a third time to figure out whether you like it or not.  

Multiple internet sites attribute this to Virgil Thomson, American composer.

I’ve been pondering that quote over the last week or so. Lots of wisdom there. Doesn’t apply to everything, but it has lots of value for many situations, especially when dealing with radical change.

Sometimes creative destruction does you in, sometimes it is political turmoil far away, and sometimes it is just destruction

A while back my wife and I vacationed in San Diego. I learned a lot of new things in Old Town. That is a state park where many buildings have been renovated to reflect life as it was from 1810 through 1870.

I read a delightful, short history of Old Town titled San Diego’s Beginnings.

One of many fascinating things is the long list of outside pressures that forced massive change on the residents of Old Town.

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Three skills for living in a social media world

Mark Schaefer has a great post at {grow} listing three careers that will be in high demand at companies living in the social media space.  I think those ideas translates into skills we will all need to work on – Three careers that will dominate social media (and it’s not what you think)

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