We tend to love the status quo. The status quo can be as comforting and reassuring as a child’s blanket or favorite stuffed animal. Alternatively, change can be intimidating, nerve-racking, and uncertain. The danger, however, is that love for the status quo can lull us into a false sense of security and blind us to both risks and opportunities.
The pace of technology, business, and even life means that everything is changing at a more rapid pace. Entire business segments are both created and made obsolete more quickly than any other time in history. Competitors come from seemingly nowhere and opportunities can be taken advantage of in a way not experienced before.
As such, we can’t be hypnotized by the status quo. It’s so easy to continue to do the same thing and too often organizations create or permit cultures where people become more concerned with protecting their turf than growing the business.
You don’t have to look any farther than Blockbuster to find a company where the status quo was doing quite well but they neglected to recognize the winds of change. As a result (and the excellent execution of Netflix), the company is in serious trouble.
The best way to avoid the danger of the status quo is to create a culture were the norms are challenged, creative thinking is encouraged and risks and opportunities are continually being evaluated. Departments needs to coordinate and collaborate, and leaders need to be required to look not just at what’s right in front of them but also what could be coming further down the road.
You can’t be certain what change is coming, but you can be assured that some type of change will arrive.