Is your organization Raising the Bar or crawling under the Bar of past successes. Some teams live by the records of others or the records of their history. Great organizations pole-vault over the bar of their past successes and continue raising the Bar along with their goals. It is these Pole – Vaulting teams which set the pace of what their followers will one day benchmark. Industries that are going through disruption must stop benchmarking the past doing so is the game of Limbo. A game where the bar is continuously lowered, and sooner or later the Limbo player falls. Industries in disruption need to run from the improvement based benchmarking of the past, and Pole – Vault themselves to reinvention. When an industry is heading to obsolesce, the future is not about improving based on the past it’s about reinvention to live in the future.
With today’s technology advances and the innovative disruption they cause. Organizations should be cautious when benchmarking past successes as they journey toward their future. Those organizations’ who understand the past was just the starting point, will always, jump over those who believe benchmarking what was will put them on the track to what could be. During Innovation and market disruptions it’s not about what should be, it’s about what could be.
Too many organizations get focused on benchmarking others, instead of creating what others will benchmark. During times of market shifts or when industries find themselves in a fight for continued relevance. Benchmarking is always about yesterday, and yesterday has no relevance during a market disruption. As industry innovators change the means to the customers’ desired outcome. Those who live and operate in a world of the past will find themselves fighting for survival. It seems too many industries and organizations are fighting for survival instead of fighting for relevance.
Innovative companies understand continuous improvement never lowers the bar, continuous improvement never allows yesterday the power over today or tomorrow, and continuous improvement has never come from teams who lower the bar.
Teams of continuous improvement are Pole – Vaulters
If your industry is in decline and you believe the best practices of the past will help you reach a prosperous future, you are playing Limbo. If your industry is in decline and you find it easier to deny this fact then fight for future relevance you are playing Limbo. If you are buying your competitors in a declining market without a deliverable transformation plan, you are playing Limbo. If you are more comfortable attending reunions and cheering the past rather than collaborating with those who welcome the future you are playing Limbo.
No one has the crystal ball. However, most have common sense, and most can see the writing on the wall during a product, or industries path to obsolescence. Here’s the advantage for the Pole Vaulter. Those benchmarking the past will be playing a game of Limbo where they will eventually fall and be crushed under the weight of the Bar of Status Quo. So now go jump over them.