Getting the Ball Rolling
A journey of a thousand miles begins with a
Remember when a strategic plan was developed every three to five years and people were then expected to simply follow it? Having the plan is as important as ever. However, today and into the future, pursuing the plan and ignoring the surrounding world simply won't work. Fluidity is in. Rigidity is out.
Flexibility should be built into the strategic plan and understood in the mission of the organization. Of course, adhering to guiding principles is important, but surviving and legitimately pursuing the mission requires firming up ongoing connections with a diversity of people, information, and ideas. When we do that, we become increasingly comfortable with the stark fact that what worked yesterday may not be adequate for tomorrow.
Continuous improvement is an energizing concept, and it's a necessity for any organization that hopes to thrive—even survive—in the future. As leaders, our commitment to continuous improvement can help us take a quantum leap toward becoming strategic futurists who play an essential, entrepreneurial, and intellectual leadership role in our communities. Principled people who are open to a constantly accelerating flow of ideas stake out the higher ground. They demonstrate that they have earned the position of leader, not simply declared it.