For more than ten years, I have been very intensively involved with social and operational change processes—both at the level of organizations and at the level of the individuals concerned.
In addition to my activities as head of the internal management consultancy of a highly dynamic and rapidly growing mid-sized enterprise with a complex group structure, I also conduct research on the topics of NEW WORK, effectiveness strategies for the 3rd millennium and “inner and outer growth”.
Below is a brief overview of the current status of my research work, summarized in 8 clear propositions.
Successful Company Management in the 3rd Millennium. 8 Propositions for a New Era.
- The disruptive energy of the digital tsunami and its effects are (still) often underestimated. At breathtaking speed, not only are all business models being turned on their head, but the way we run companies successfully in the future will also change radically. This means that digitalization is accelerating the substantial transformation of underlying structures.
- Ground-breaking changes inevitably trigger fears—particularly if they happen at high speeds. Understandable reactions such as talking them down, denial or wanting to sit things out do not, however, produce sustainable security for companies. Action rather than reaction has always been the smarter company strategy. And so, the transformation of fear, anger and powerlessness becomes a top management task.
- In an age shaped by VUCA*, the yardsticks of corporate activity are shifting. Flexibility is now more important than size, speed more relevant than quality, data knowledge more valuable than capital, self-organization more effective than hierarchical structures and intrinsic motivation more powerful than authority.
- The exponentially growing transparency which goes hand in hand with digitalization also shakes up the previous stakeholder power structures. Consumers, colleagues, government organizations and NGOs have an increasingly allergic reaction to the fact that entrepreneurial action, seen as a whole, creates more epochal challenges than it solves. In the long term, no company will continue to be able to afford the one-sided shareholder value approach which is solely geared toward efficiency.
- A multi-stakeholder value approach only seems at first glance to be a profit killer. That’s because value creation is being destroyed on a large scale every day—we are just not aware of this (any longer) or have simply grown used to it. This means that the top priority of smart company management must be not merely to fight symptoms but to have the courage to identify the causes of the causes. This will increase the (financial and energetic) scope for action to achieve an effective and successful multi-stakeholder value approach.
- Far-sighted business leaders recognize that we are moving towards fundamental social transformation and that current crises are the labor pains of a new era. They see the potential hidden in the apparently difficult environmental conditions or rules of the game. And at the same time, they realize that these underlying challenges cannot be solved with the previously proven mindsets or the tried and tested methods of the past.
- In order to secure corporate value creation potential sustainably for the future, the innovative power of the all-encompassing hyper-trend “digitalization” must be completely exploited and the destruction of value creation currently taking place must be significantly curbed. Numerous business leaders are doing valuable pioneering work in this area. As different as their approaches may be, what they all have in common is the insight that the term “innovation” must be more broadly formulated than it was in the past. As well as product and business model innovations, we also require social innovations which affect both the organization itself (the key word here being “self-organization”) and the individual (the key word being “self-leadership competence”).
- To manage complex systems successfully in an ever faster and more multifaceted world, many pioneers use insights and laws unconnected with classical economic disciplines. An interdisciplinary pool of knowledge and experience, which can encompass excursions into evolutionary history, bionics, psychology, system theory, quantum physics, cybernetics, neuroscience, sociocracy, alternative healing systems, philosophy and traditional wisdoms is no rarity and, in many places, provides the impetus for the development of holistic management systems for a new era. Far-sighted top managers use these insights and this wealth of experience to secure themselves significant competitive advantages.
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