Have you ever watched a flock of birds work together? Thousands of animals, flying in perfect synchrony: isn’t it fascinating? What I find remarkable is that these birds would not be able to do that if they all would have to follow one leader. Martin Danoesastro
Futures thinking teaches that diversity is key to the survival of any business, particularly in today’s world; one defined by high speed connections, blurred boundaries and exponential and fast-paced change. A diversity of perspectives allows us to make smarter decisions by moving beyond our personal biases and blind spots. But this is only possible in an organization that fosters a sense of diversity through transparency and open communication, enabling and empowering talent. Where opposing views are welcomed and discussion around those views: encouraged.
Change isn’t possible when everyone thinks the same way.
In a traditional hierarchical structure, managers manage their teams and crucial decisions are often made in isolation, only to trickle down to the do-ers of an organization without context. What happens as a result is nothing short of a “broken telephone” situation where a company’s talent is expected to enact orders from a higher power, without meaning or purpose. In this context, change is impossible because power lies in the hands of a very few who drive the momentum of a company without accepting the possibility that perhaps they don’t truly know what’s best.
Fluid and nimble organizations will thrive in the future as long as they’re rooted in non-traditional structures. A structure in which teams are made of people who share a common vision and bring their individual style and skills to the table to create a complementary fusion of perspectives. A healthy diversity of opinions and an actionable set of directives that will empower an organization to flex as required when everything around them is changing. By incorporating a diversity of mindsets, an organization can proactively respond to outside forces, as opposed to simply reacting when things run amok.
Moving proactively, strategically and successfully is only possible when we employ the skill of foresight because nothing changes when we’re stuck in our old thinking and dogma.
What are you willing to give up to change the way we work?