October 5, 2020
by John O. Burdett
In a business environment where speed of learning is, arguably, the only sustainable competitive advantage, how you learn is more important than what you learn.
A crisis has three stages
Breakthrough technology, uncertainty and the unprecedented and ever-increasing speed of change demand an organisation that is a fit for the challenges of the 21st century. We are describing not just a better, but a very different kind of way to operate. An organisation built to change; one where disruption, agility and speed of learning dominate the leadership conversation.
Which brings us to the COVID-19 crisis. A crisis has three stages. Stage one: acceptance. Stage two: survival. Stage three: growth. And the winners will be? Those who do come out of this crisis stronger.
In a business environment where speed of learning is, arguably, the only sustainable competitive advantage, how you learn is more important than what you learn. No less significant, the learning approach taken now will set the stage for what is to come. Fall behind and the probability is you will stay behind.
All learning starts with an experience
Because we are “programmed” to seek meaning in our lives, a new experience provokes a question. The quality of the question, in turn, determining the richness of the learning. The resulting learning unfolds in one of three ways. Each stage of learning representing not only deeper but exponentially, faster learning.
Simple learning equates to doing what you have always done, but better. “We discovered that technologies such as Zoom are a great way to connect with our current and potential customers. As a result, outside of key accounts, we will incorporate video links into oursales process.”
Learning how to learn is exemplified by addressing a central business issue. “We need to totally revamp the supply chain. We got through this crisis but we are clearly less agile than we need to be.”
Learning how to learn, limited only by the imagination of those involved is, fundamentally, about transformation. Reinventing the business such that it creates value in a world where the benchmark of success is being strong enough to weather the unexpected and agile enough to take advantage of it. That’s exactly how new market entrants will play the game.
Recognising that future business success depends on preparing all aspects of the business for a very different tomorrow … then, “If not now, when?” Finally, in that the genesis of leadership excellence lies in self-awareness, “What are you doing personally to come out of this crisis stronger?”
Download the full insights
- The Three Stages of Crisis
- Letting Go of Our Past
- Following a Script From a Different Century
- The New Normal
- Coming Down the Mountain
- Why Culture Matters
- Next Steps
- Appendix one: 3 X 3: Crisis, Culture and Change
- MINDSET ASSESSMENT: Will You come Out of This Crisis Stronger?
This article is an extract of content © Orxestra® Inc. The download is available from the TRANSEARCH International website.
John O. Burdett is founder of Orxestra® Inc. He has extensive international experience as a senior executive. As a consultant he has worked in more than 40 countries for organisations that are household names. John has worked on organisation culture for some of the world's largest organisations. His ongoing partnership with TRANSEARCH International means that his thought leading intellectual property, in any one year, supports talent management in many hundreds of organisations around the world. Get in touch with John O. Burdett »