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What got us here won’t get us there…

May has been a relatively confusing month for me, awash in new theories and frankly info overload! It has opened my eyes to be expose to some of the digital disruption work and talk of the ‘4th industrial revolution’,

but frankly some days the excessive number of windows open on my desktop mirrors my brain!

Add to this the fact that I’ve been ill, and my guilt thermometer simply moves into danger zone if I’m not at least reading when I’m ‘down and out’ and so in comes more information! I am aware that as an Enneagram ‘wing 5’, I do default to a thirst for knowledge and somehow, enough is never enough!

But what I am beginning to realise, as much as I’d rather hide my face – emoji style – my world of learning in facilitation and coaching is undergoing as much turbulent change as any other profession.

One of my many current tabs on Chrome is an article entitled, “Humane leadership must be the Fourth Industrial Revolution’s real innovation” . And aside from the burden of it placing three buzz words into one sentence, the WEF quotes;

  • Organisations, institutions and societies are going through a major crisis. Performance continues to decline whether measured through return on assets, or return on invested capital
  • The average life expectancy of Fortune 500 companies has decreased from 75 to 15 years in the last 50 years.

  • Furthermore, data shows that only 13% of the workforce is passionate about their work, despite the plethora of techniques and resources spent on learning and development (L&D). Global figures show that 80% of employees are less than fully engaged at work.

So I confess that left me feeling somewhat disheartened and wondering what on earth all this learning and development work has been about for the last 20 years! And if I wasn’t slitting my wrists already, the article adds,

“we have a problem: something is broken here. The old leadership model does not work and is actually getting worse…”

Mmmm time to step back a bit and gain some perspective. What I do know is ‘what got us here won’t get us there’ to paraphrase a book of a similar title. One redeeming factor is that the research goes on to

promote coaching as the preferred method of equipping leaders to spot their blind spots and build self awareness;

at least something in our current toolkit.

And then lastly it promotes a model of value creation that reminds me a great deal of the work of Margaret Wheatley.

So this is what I’m trying to work with in the client teams with whom I am currently working. So what’s working for you in this current stream of change? How engaged are your people and how is leadership working in your organisation?


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