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The 5 Key Reasons Change Strategies Fail

It really is a jungle out there.  If I needed reminding, recently a friend lost his company because of circumstances largely outside of his control.  Gearing up for his most prosperous year ever, he'd planned for growth but stood by helplessly when the Irak war, a slowdown in US housing and a rise in value of the Canadian dollar made his American customer-base hold back; then the price of oil hurt everybody and he had major internal changes to manage. 

When important innovations didn't deliver their promised time and money savings quickly enough, his business began to falter.  Downsizing caused more turbulence and the brewing storm hit his infrastructure hard.   Described in my book as "the effect of paradigm", the phenomenon explains why my friend didn't see the storm coming until it was too late.  Prognosis:  Too many changes too fast and not enough capital, flexibility or force to weather it out

Everyone agrees that continued growth must come from innovation.  Leaders should also know that innovation means change and they have to understand that successful change requires strategy, time, resources and a little bit of luck. 

People resist planning change because it destabilizes things.  But that means that people remain resistant to planning innovation - the real need - until it's too late.  Nature manages constant changes and is very successful at it.  It does this by managing 3 aspects of the transformation process called the Chaos, the Transition and the Creative regimes.  I wrote about them in the first issue of The Jungle Times - but basically:  Chaos describes what must be changed and the Creative regime is the ideal result of the change so that the Transition regime tells how to bridge the gap.

Most entrepreneurs, leaders and managers don't understand the pitfalls of managing change.  That's why the conditions for failure's "perfect storm" tend to blindside them.  In fact, research shows that a great many organizations fail because of 5 key leadership failures.  

In the Harvard Business Review, researchers Y. Doz, D. Laurie and C. S. Oyster reveal reasons why change programs fail:

Had my friend known about the pitfalls up front, he might have avoided a very unpleasant and painful "Lesson from the jungle…".



There are more than 30 empowering syntheses described and explained in my book "SELF-Empowerment &endash; How and why to invest in your creative capital".  You'll find the details &endash; including excerpts &endash; by clicking here.



Strategic thinking isn't a gift reserved for the few. It's a skill that can be learned by most anyone.  Check out the curriculum of an exceptional training week in Costa Rica and then invite your team to become "empowered thinkers".  Get the details here.



Have you done anything newsworthy?  If you're looking to get the publicity tht seems to go with accomplishment, don't hold your breath.  News outlets won't find you unless you tell them who you are and what you've done - so check into the following resources.  Inform the world by getting your news out on the wires.

Tell press agencies like American Press and Reuters. Next, a list of the world's newspapers.

You'll contact all the U.S. radio and TV stations. Here's access to radio around the world. And, finally, if you might want a Press Agent to do it for you.



"A desire to be in charge of our own lives, a need for control, is born in each of us." Robert F. Bennett

"The only limit to our realization of tomorrow is our doubts today."  F. Roosevelt

"There are only two people who can tell you the truth about yourself: an enemy who has lost his temper and a friend who loves you dearly.Antisthenes

"Only the shallow truly know themselves." Oscar Wilde

"In his private heart no man much respects himself." Mark Twain

"My religion consists of a humble admiration of the illimitable superior spirit who reveals himself in the slight details we are able to perceive with our frail and feeble mind."  Albert Einstein



Turtles are differently-abled.  We know that since the day - a long time ago - when a turtle slowly passed a tiger's lair and came to a complete stop when he saw Mrs. Tiger standing at the door.

Turtle bowed and said, "How do you do, ma'am?"

And Mrs Tiger replied: "I'm fine, thank you!  How are you Mr. Turtle?"

"Well," Turtle said in turn, "I've got a fever and my skin hurts all over. I'm so sick that I'm going into the bush to look for roots to make some medicinal tea."

"That sounds like the right thing to do," agreed Mrs. Tiger.

"So… where is Mr. Tiger today?" asked Turtle.

"Why he's out hunting," replied the Mrs, "Haven't you seen him?"

"No ma'am I did not!"  Turtle said. "I'm sorry he's away because if he was here, I'd jump on his back and ride him into the forest like I would a horse - then I'd have my roots soon enough."

Well - this statement so upset Mrs. Tiger that she began yelling and cursing at the turtle and finally blurted out:  "Why you must be as slow-witted as you are slow to move about - if you believe such drivel! Why my husband…"  And yada, yada, yada, and she went on and on and on.

Her tirade finally spent, Turtle just bid her good day and continued on his way until he found his roots. Then he went home.

When Mr. Tiger returned home late that afternoon, his good wife told him what Turtle had said &endash; i.e. he'd ride him like a horse.  

On hearing this, that Tiger went nuts... growling, snapping his jaws open and shut, cussing a blue streak and, exhausted, he then decided to visit Turtle and have things out with him.

"So, you think you can ride me like a horse do you?" - Tiger yelled when he got neat Turtle Creek."My wife told me what you said!"

"No I do not think that!" said Turtle, " I never said anything like that.  Your wife is mistaken ...Sorry !!"

Tiger was stopped cold and had no reply.  After the longest silence, he said: "All right then Turtle, let's go see my wife.  She will set this straight".

Turtle replied: "Well yes I'd love to go visiting but I can't walk can I? I am sick with fever all over aren't I? Didn't your wife tell you that?"

"Um - urrr - yes - ", Tiger replied confused but thinking fast.  And then, "...well... Okay. Right then... I've got it: I'll carry you there!  Climb aboard and I'll run over so my wife can tell me again about your abominations and lies."

And Turtle slowly answered: " I'm not so sure!  As you are such a strong and speedy Tiger, my fever will surely make me fall of you."

"No wait !" - he continued after a thought - "Unless… if you get me a little rope. Yes that's it… I'll tie it around your neck and hold onto it so I don't fall off.  In that way when I shake with the fever I'll still be safe."

And so Tiger, anxious to resolve the issue, got him some rope.  But then Turtle said: "I'll tell you what though - if you get me a small stick, I'll keep the flies from bothering you while you so kindly carry me as I'm sure they'll be attracted to my illness and fever."

Thinking this a good idea, Tiger got him a stick. Turtle then climbed on Tiger's back and steadied himself.  So they rode off together to see Mrs Tiger and dare we say they had very little trouble along the way.  Turtle did bounce about some but he wrapped the rope very tightly around Tiger's neck (almost gagging him) and held fast to it, apologizing for the inconvenience. 

When they neared Tiger's Lair, Turtle began flogging Mr Tiger with the stick and was viciously beating him when they reached his waiting wife.  Shocked, she yelled at her husband: "So it's true.  Turtle said he'd ride you like a horse and he is indeed doing exactly that!"

Then, unexpectedly, she burst out laughing:  "I'm very sorry for doubting you dear Mr. Turtle.  You must be quicker to the creative Spirit than I thought… to trick my husband like that. Why he is the greatest hunter in the forest - Aren<t you dear?"

Tiger then realized he'd been fooled and, very angry, he grabbed Turtle off his back, took his stick and flogged him many times with it, striking the shell repeatedly and causing very little damage. 

At last, his anger spent again, he realized that Turtle had not asked for the ride but that he had offered.  So he let the clever Turtle go.  But the point is that Mr. Turtle did ride Mr. Tiger like a horse and that's why today all Tigers have whip marks all over their body.  And that's why no one believes Turtles are as slow-witted as they are slow afoot. Indeed - they are differently abled!


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