Wake up call – don’t get stuck in the jar – transformation is sweeping

December 22, 2015 Torben Rick


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Business transformation is sweeping – don’t get stuck in the jar

Today’s leaders are confronted with a world that is in transformation:

  • With new economies that are emerging
  • With markets that are rapidly changing
  • With new technologies that generate new products, services, communication means
  • With revolutionary changes in connectivity (between societies, market places, companies, and people).

 

Wake up call – don’t get stuck in the jar – transformation is sweeping

Many companies and leaders struggle with this reality

All of it has a strong impact on companies and their leaders. But many companies and leaders struggle with this reality. Whether they are involved in mergers and acquisitions, or in global expansion and are coping with other cultural behaviors, rules and values. Whether they are dealing with customers that are becoming much more informed, aware and demanding with respect to topics like customer service, quality, corporate responsibility and sustainability. Whether they are confronted with new generations of talented employees that have totally different views on job, workplace, and work/life balance.

Don’t stick to success formulas of the past

When confronted with these changes, leaders tend to try hard to stick to success formulas of the past. And the more explicit the change presents itself, the stronger this reflex tends to be.

They try to extend the current situation as much as possible. They let themselves be dazzled by “positive results” and avoid looking at negative signals. They regard the change as negative or dangerous. They block critical thinking. They ignore facts. And it becomes worse when they are led by ego.

The consequences of this type of blindness can be serious

Not being able to let go of your past, of your past success, of clinging on to it, almost always creates Win-Lose situations. It is blocking the opportunity to develop and grow.

The power of successful leaders is that they recognize well in advance when change is going to take place and innovation is needed. They explicitly open up to the unknown, to new influences and cultures. They lead the way in letting go of what was. They focus on creating Win-Win situations.

 

Fast fish which eats the slow fish - Disruptive

Don’t get stuck in the jar

Not being able to let go of certain things can have serious consequences:

 

The story goes that the hunters put an apple in a glass jar with a narrow opening and leave the jar deep into the jungle under a tree. In the evening the monkeys come out of the trees triggered by the alluring fragrance of the apple. They find the jar by following their noses. As soon as a monkey sees the apple in the jar it doesn’t hesitate and puts a hand in and grabs the apple. But when it tries to pull the hand out it gets stuck in the neck of the jar because holding the apple makes the hand too big for the neck. The monkey is caught in an agonizing dilemma: letting go of the apple and having its hand back, or trying over and over to pull the hand and the apple out of the jar. The desire for the apple wins … In the morning when the hunters return they find the jar with the monkey next to it on the ground, exhausted.  Its hand still stuck in the jar. Too exhausted to fight the hunters, too tired to flee. An easy prey.

 

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Torben Rick
Wake up call – don’t get stuck in the jar – transformation is sweeping

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