This morning I was speaking to the Innovation Engineering Fundamentals class at the Eureka! Ranch. I explained that if you can't describe your system with words then it wasn't a system. I went on to explain that in 40 years of innovation work I'm yet to find a company that has a system for creating, communicating, or developing ideas. They have Stage Gate standards - but these don't define WHAT, WHY, and HOW to innovate.
SIX TIMES last week I was challenged…. “Why do you keep changing?” In each case it was said with a sense of humor laced with anxiety. The confrontations occurred following advanced “peek” discussions of “beta versions” of upgrades to our Innovation Engineering software tools and Brain Brew Whiskey(e)y bourbons. The tools offer a 10X increase in innovation speed - the whiskey’s offer 2 to 1 consumer preference. Despite these benefits - passive aggressive resistance remains to both.
In today’s fast based world grow or die is a simple slogan and truth. In theory everyone agrees. However in practice as one company leader told me recently, “I’m in favor of change for everyone other than me!” She smiled when she said it - acknowledging the ridiculousness of her feelings.
Thinking on it over the weekend I’ve identified three theories as to the root cause of resistance
- LACK OF ALIGNMENT on The Bigger Picture Mission: The biggest source of resistance may well be a lack of alignment on the greater purpose for the change. Most adults have a very narrow field of view. They are focused on their work, team or department. To make change happen we need to help folks understand the bigger picture - the mission that is greater then their personal work. In our world - they need to understand the Blue Card Narrative… the what and why this improvement is important.