Drawing on his book, Future-Fit, popular business speaker and expert on business sustainability, Giles Hutchins, shares his advice for leaders who want their organisations to thrive in these unpredictable times. Chartwell are proud to be promoting Giles for speaker bookings at events and conferences worldwide. Get in touch on the links below for more information.
Increasing volatility, complexity and uncertainty is the new norm, hence our organizations need to be able to not just survive but thrive amidst unceasing transformation. Too many of today’s organizations are locked in to hierarchic, KPI-obsessed, siloed, control-based, defensive, reactionary and fire-fighting mind-sets strangling the ability to adapt and evolve amid volatility. Isolated initiatives such as wellbeing-at-work, purposeful business, mindfulness, and corporate social responsibility, often leave the underlying logic, culture and ethos of the organization unchecked.
Only a fundamental overhaul of the underlying logic will enable our firms of the future to flourish amid these transformational times. As well as all this, there are complex shifts affecting each of us at deep and partly unconscious levels, challenging how we perceive ourselves, each other and the world around us.
At once it is an immensely exciting, liberating, testing and unpredictable time to be involved in the future of business. The ancient Greeks called such a time Kairos – a supreme moment of indeterminable time which, if not adequately engaged and acted upon, may pass us by.
This crucial time bears witness to a profound window opening between two worldviews, that of the out-dated yet still prevalent logic of yesterday (with its hallmark models, mind-sets and metrics) and the dawn of our emerging future whereupon the perceptions and practices of yesterday melt amid the heat of the moment, alchemically reconfiguring new pathways, perspectives, principles and behaviours.
This age of uncertainty demands new ways of operating and organizing: distributed, networked, anti-fragile, flourishing firms of the future. This ‘new norm’ reaches well beyond orthodox organisational logic by seeding wholly new ways of doing and being. It is a liberating transformation which happens at all levels of our culture: from the everyday meeting protocols designed for control transforming into more collaborative methods such as hackathons, swarms and open space technology; to top-down control-based bureaucracy transforming into locally-attuned teams of people empowered to adapt to ever-changing conditions within their sphere of operation.
Enter a myriad of organisations thriving amid uncertainty by applying living-systems logic: the hi-tech manufacturer Gore & Associates, the healthcare provider Buurtzorg, the bank Triodos, the employment agency Vaga, the chemicals manufacturer Scott Bader, the global network of social-enterprise community centres Impact Hub, the multimedia provider Sounds True, to name a few.
Running our organisations in more natural, more alive, more creative ways is not some futurist utopian vision, it’s happening now as you read this article. Gone with the winds of change is the artificial certainty and mechanistic linearity of command-and-control cultures and ‘human resource’ management, revealing a fresher, purposeful, altogether more human approach to our ways of working. After all, we humans are innately creative, passionate, convivial, collaborative, social, loving creatures. It’s about time we started to live up to our name of Homo Sapiens (wise beings) by metamorphosing our organisational logic towards the wisdom of Life.
More about Giles Hutchins:
Giles Hutchins blends a wealth of business strategy, operations and transformation experience with pioneering new thought on leading, sustaining and flourishing in volatile times. In particular, he draws on the logic of living systems to aid our organisations evolve into ‘firms of the future’. A prolific speaker, writer and adviser, he applies twenty years of experience to his work at personal and organisational levels. Read more and book Giles to speak at your next event >>
Speaker, author, adviser Giles Hutchins’ latest book Future-Fit is now out on Amazon.
‘Essential and timely’ Dr. Scilla Elworthy, Author and Founder of the Oxford Research Group
‘A must-read’ Bob Willard, Author and Speaker, Sustainability Advantage
‘Brilliant’ Richard Barrett, Chairman and Founder of The Barrett Values Centre
‘A masterpiece’ Mark Drewell, Founder of The Globally Responsible Leadership Initiative