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Economic turbulence and digital transformation are the two macro phenomena that, for some time now, have been impacting on all organizations; they influence and will increasingly influence over 5 areas: organizational paradigm, leadership culture, social responsibility, environmental responsibility and economic performance.
In this context, it becomes necessary to use new interpretative keys and create a new culture. To do so, it is necessary to move away from traditional comfort zones, develop a new personal mindset and new approaches to the management of organizations.
The question we need to ask ourselves is: do we change home or furniture?
With this metaphor we want to highlight the transition that organizations face today. For the interpretation we give to the context we are inclined to prefer the changing home, but with this choice we do not intend to establish new dogmas.
This is not the age of single thought. It is clear that each organization has its own specificity, lives and operates in a particular context. However, we believe that in order to keep the organization “vital” the choice between the change of the house (a new mindset) or the change of furniture (a partial change of the mindset) is a theme that cannot be ignored today.
Changing habits and getting out of your comfort zone have always been recognized as among the most difficult actions to perform. Even if rationally you accept change, when you find yourself in complex situations or working under stress it is natural to tend to replicate “old” patterns of behavior.
Today we are called to face above all adaptive changes and, in order to deal with them, we require people who live them and who lead/manage them to have a different thinking approach and especially new skills.
This approach of thought must necessarily address non-traditional areas for those people involved in business organization such as: neuroscience, quantum physics and evolutionary biology. Disciplines that offer useful indications on the functioning of organizations and, in particular, on the way people think and act.
Whoever plays a leading role, in order to be a “real” agent of change, must not only innovate, starting from himself, but manage innovation and the processes that underlie it; a task that is increasingly difficult. Innovation, in fact, is not only “composed” of materiality and technology, but it is also increasingly referable to networks of relationships, organizational models, people, values and meanings, myths. The problem is to understand how to best manage these different dimensions.
What is required for entrepreneurs and managers is a behavioral metamorphosis that can be linked to some specific “challenges”:
And, above all, prepare for the unexpected. Keep in mind that the unexpected often surprises us. The fact is that we are “anchored” with great certainty to our theories and ideas, and that these often have no capacity to welcome the new. The new will come but we can never predict how it will present itself.
Today, to run a company, it is no longer enough to do what you do well. Of course, this remains a determining factor to be competitive, but this ability must be mixed with the ability to see the potential of innovations, the spaces they can open, and to imagine.
Automation, Internet of Things, Machine Learning, Artificial Intelligence are here to stay and have insinuated themselves into all aspects of our lives, including work. All the technological innovations, which have marked the different industrial revolutions, were initially presented as the beginning of the end of humanity.
We are now facing a technological revolution that will change the way we work, live and relate to others. And it is doing so with an unprecedented speed. Whether we like it or not, the only choice we have is to adapt to this new situation.
In the thirteenth century, Roger Bacon and a monk built a mechanical head capable of thinking. But the automaton did not come to life. They asked for help to a spirit, who warned them: be patient, the head will give you a sign. For three weeks nothing happened; finally they gave themselves a night’s rest, entrusting the vigil to a guardian. As soon as they fell asleep, the robot spoke: “It’s time”. The sentinel judged the episode too trivial to interrupt the monks’ sleep. After half an hour the head was reanimated: “It was time”. Another half hour of silence passed, finally the robot sentenced: “The moment has passed”, and it shattered.
At the heart of changing processes are the people in the various roles they play. With their fears and potential.
An organization is the result of the relationships that exist between the people who are part of it, and the more these relationships are valued the higher the “peaks” reached.
The importance of collaboration and teamwork is even more relevant in today’s work environment where each individual has only a fraction of all the information and expertise needed to perform an activity. Therefore, the network, or team, of people we can turn to for information and expertise is increasingly vital. Never as today are we as dependent on the mind of the group as we are today.
There is no doubt that the group mind can be far more intelligent than the individual mind; the scientific data on this point is overwhelming.
Believing in the intelligence and sensitivity of people (of all the people who constitute the organization – as today we are all interconnected) becomes strategically relevant.
We all know the acronym V.U.C.A. created, according to some sources, by the US army college in 2005, according to other sources in 1987 from the leadership theories of Warren Bennis and Burt Nanus to describe or reflect on the volatility, uncertainty, complexity and ambiguity of the context in which we live. It does not matter what the correct source is. What is certain is that this acronym is used very often in the world of management.
Since we are immersed in the VUCA world, how to adopt a new mindset? How to create a new culture?
We think we should turn a “constraint” into a “possibility”: we can answer the V.U.C.A. with the W.A.T.T.
Wisdom, Agility, Trust, Trasparency
From these foundations the building project can be started on the basis of some awareness: