Last month, I spent five days at the Eureka Ranch, getting current in my training as an Innovation Engineering Black Belt. While I was there, Doug’s team was working in real time on a new product that is truly extraordinary. They were going through very rapid learning cycles, and updating their concept on an almost hourly basis. We got to test some of their product (hint: it’s an adult beverage) and it’s truly amazing.
A few weeks later, I was in DC at a major federal agency. They have a data product that is in dire need of updating and revising in a big way, as technology has rendered their original approach obsolete. For two days, a big group of us provided them feedback. Their response was generally focused on what they couldn’t do – because of rules, regulations, reviews, and different systems in different agencies – a host of excuses. It was such a contrast to what was happening at the Ranch.
These two examples are at opposite ends of the spectrum, but they illustrate an important point. None of our organizations, whether governmental, nonprofit or for profit, are immune from the big changes happening in the market. Major demographic shifts, technological advances and globalization are affecting everyone. We all have a choice. Be proactive and get ahead of the changes, or be reactive, or worse, passive, and be run over.
Change isn’t fun for most people, but consider the alternative.