Balancing change and continuity
Change has been more than sufficiently harped as an imperative to stay ahead of the game or at the very least, ensure an organization’s staying power. Companies trumpet the call for meaningful transformation in this age of game changers. Dare we not lower our guard on being in the lookout for customer preferences and an ever changing lifestyle that explores and exploits social media to lead the competition in radical waves and raves!
We want to see change in our operating systems. We want shop initiatives aligned so that we all march to the same tune to impact bottom line aspirations in business growth and customer experience. We want to see change in management infrastructures to expedite project implementation and weed out barriers to productivity. We want to see change in behavior by reinforcing a culture of transparency and embraced accountabilities. The change must be felt. If President Rodrigo Duterte’s leadership plays up on the tagline, “change is coming,” in the business world, we know that change has already been constantly taking place and has put to the acid test our threshold for adaptability, flexibility and accelerated learning.
How will the change in style of national governance affect the way we manage our own change programs? Let’s face it. President Digong is bound to operate within his gift zone –peace and order. His radical approach to cleaning up the mess of corruption and unlawful practices will heighten the necessity for organizations to also police from within. Will his brutal frankness, irreverent demeanor, controversial stand on many issues and his bias for ‘quick action producing quick results’ be replicated as an example to take the cue from, or do we foresee a lot of opposition given his unabashed opinions on causes that have offended conservative and linear thinkers?
This is where we need to strike the balance between change and continuity. While fresh perspectives can excite, tired as we are in dealing with lousy practices that stunt progress, we must look at the meaningful gains of the past that attest to where we scored well. We cannot totally abolish systems that helped usher in substantial developments and enabled us to grow the economy. We must sustain programs that strengthen our stature as a revitalized nation where it’s good to do and grow business.
This is also a classic case of an outgoing leader who thought and executed strategically but lacked charisma and an incoming crime busting punisher who nevertheless identified with the multitude who salivate for change and in more ways than one, became the mouthpiece for their lamentations, albeit with the rawness of a folksy street-smart ‘macho’ enforcer whose candid remarks elicit both amusement and dismay from a divided citizenry.
Rant or rave – there must be a way to welcome the good that this change promises coupled with a way to take a stand for what we need to continue, lest the momentum gets busted and we find ourselves picking at remnants which we couldn’t piece back together. Business organizations will be challenged with both the internal and external intramurals of change and continuity.
Let our tribe thrive through this ambiguous process.