Sometimes there's no Ying and Yang, It's all Yang or All Ying But it's STILL a Choice
Thursday 23 June 2016
One of the challenging things dealing with some executive teams or leadership groups is what to do when there is an expectation, either explicit or implied, that there will be a 'good' option. But the reality for many organisations is that there will come a time when no matter which way you look at things, the choices still look bad. The question is what you do at that point
And the responses are not always good. In asetting where 'never tell the boss bad news' exists (typically those that emphasise that mistakes will not be tolerated, and where there is a critical lack of intelligent experimentation permitted), any hint that a choice is negative, or alternatively that there's no really good choices, the organisation will 'create' a choice that seems palatable. In otherwords, they make something up!
EVEN WHEN those that put that choice together KNOW there is NO CHANCE such a choice is valid or viable.
Two examples from futures work are two scenario developments that provide insights into the senior leadership in play. One the Eygypt 2020 scenarios provided for potential pathways for the development of a future Eygypt. One of the four pathways seemed good (preferrable) but unlikely. The other three were somewhat confrontational though just as well grounded in the narrative development. The group that put those scenarios together was shut down shortly thereafter a case of 'shoot the messenger'. Another set of scenarios developed by the UN looked at Aids in Africa. The 'best' scenario that could be developed given all available thinking at the time, was captured in my summary here: 'If we were to start now and do everything we can to address the issue, AIDS in Africa may stabilise around 2070'.
Yep, 60 years to get things to a level of stability. And that was the best possible scenario that could be envisaged at the time. Thankfully action is still underway though perhaps not at the levels required to hit the target.
How your organisation responds when they are faced with 'we've got some really bad news, some pretty bad news and some just bad news' as the choices will determine how well you cope. Denial is not an effective strategy. Executives and Leadership teams must be able to determine which pathway works in the near term future to set up a more palatable and desireable medium and long term future. They then need to have that conversation with staff and provide them with the same choices to show that decisions are not being made for no apparent reason.
Sometimes all you have to play with is Ying and more Ying or Just Yang and a lot more Yang
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Monday 27 February 2017
It's been a significantly busy couple of months looking at how Industries and Government Agencies are preparing for change. The Companies versus Climate Change conference in Fort Lauderdale, Florida in November/December, and a meeting with the Political Science Department at the University of Hawaii (Manoa) in January show that positive action is happening, despite some of the headlines
Saturday 31 December 2016
Many of you know that each year I make an observation about what I think the year will bring. The track record suggests I'm usually a couple of years ahead of the curve. With that said I'm calling 2017
Monday 12 December 2016
In Ft. Lauderdale USA I recently attending a delightful provocatively named 'Companies Versus Climate Change' conference. And the message is clear - companies, BIG well known companies are tackling the issues of climate change, sustainability and their carbon footprints and both making and saving VAST sums of dollars. The simple take away message from the presentations over the three days could not have been more explicit - tackling climate change pays off big time!