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A year ago, in a course seminar, one of my learners told me that their organization does not have a strategy. They, in practice, have what we call an emergent strategy.
Emergent strategies do not come up from strategy retreats or top-down planning process of their leaders.
It comes from continuous patterns of behaviors, inclinations, and moves that stem from an adaptive understanding of the competitive field and the resultant effects to products, services, and priorities. Smaller organizations rely on their yearly assessment to generate the kind of strategic knowledge they need to maintain their ordered disorder. More of a 'gut thinking' than a reliance to a formal systematic cognitive process.
However, emergent does not mean not being able to define, articulate, and leverage your strategy to be able to win against competition or survive in tough times. A strategy is like an arrow in a skilled marksman. It's sharp, unyielding, and produces the intended impact, whether to defend oneself or make a ruckus. Be intentional with your target, because as "the arrow chases the target, the target chases the arrow." - Paolo Coelho.
You can be precise but completely wrong, instead adjust as you build.
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How many organizations in the on-purpose sector are scrambling to get the best member?
You want the world to know your impact.
You want the world to see you've made these dents and about to accomplish more.
You are innovative and leading the way for others.
You need great members.
A newly minted organization is asking itself what is the best positioning in a world where competition for belonging, attention, and value is high and unyielding. When talented people are redesigning their lives versus to fit and to belong to just anything. When time outside work and family is precariously limited.
To get the best you need to be the most differentiated or at least try to be.
Ask yourself, what's the driving force behind your differentiation?
Don't just be different from the mold, create a new paradigm.
Ask them, what affiliation would best meet their needs?
Don't just provide the obvious and standard. Raise the bar.
Educate the public. Educate your network. Educate your team.
If what you want to be doesn't excite or scare you. Rinse and repeat.
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My quiet January became dramatic because I let fear in. When you're trying to bring about change and everything is going nicely, fear would creep in and induce a lot of paranoia that's unnecessary. This comes in the form of self-doubt, overthinking and defensiveness. A working relationship became mired with hypotheticals and what-ifs.
Why good changes do not stick? Aside from resistance to change because of confusion, misunderstanding, lack of buy-in, addressing the emotional issues from the change dynamic is key.
Fear is the number emotion that will hold organizations and leaders back from their planned approach.
Courage and the absence of it, will make or break a change prospects.
If you let in fear for only a short time, you let paralysis in and overthinking which will derail you.
If you let in fear for a long time, you will renege on your commitments and undervalue your own worth.
If you let in fear intervene in your progress, you're undermining your achievements.
Address issues as they arise and not pre-empt them in a way that will sabotage your progress.
Trust me, once I realized it's all about fear, it' easy to manage the rest.