You might have heard 'business is a contact sport.'
No amount of preparation will be enough once you get punched in the face.
Then the rest is up to your training, background, experience, insight, prior knowledge, and correct assessment of the situation.
Using common sense, learning on the fly, being adaptive, flexible, and creative will get you through some of the business challenges that are out there.
When you know that things that are coming and did not prepare, you deserve a kick in the butt.
But some things come from nowhere and will leave you totally unprepared. These types of scenario are the ones that no amount of preparation will be sufficient.
Take heed, learn everything you need to learn, and take counsel from those that have been there and been successful, not the armchair advisors. To mitigate the risks and weather the storm, your present response matters a lot.
Your Theory of Change is your organization's statement as to how your mission will achieve your vision.
What constitutes an effective Theory of Change?
-Clear causal chains leading to change
-Your inputs, outputs, and outcomes reflect the change
-Explains the underlying assumptions of actions, activities, programs, and portfolios
-Gives explanations to other factors leading to or achieving change
-Gives analysis and context of how change can happen and in what conditions
-Accounts for their contribution to the overall change that they want to see
The theory of change is not:
-About defending the theory or framework itself
-Not about being truistic or being tautological
-Being naïve that your theory of change is unique and never been done somewhere, somehow
-Not learning from lessons of other practitioners, not looking over your shoulder to see what others' have done with the challenges and issues
- Too simplistic, myopic, and mechanistic
- The premise that we 'don't know the solution yet, so our theory of change is about proving the theory." Very wrong.
What is your theory of change? Your theory of change says a lot about the quality of the analysis you put in your work and how it makes a difference every day?
In the Philippines, we have a traditional song that goes....
"Planting rice is never fun"
"Bent from morn till the set of sun"
"Cannot stand and cannot sit"
"Cannot walk for a little bit"
It is not fun at all when you have a water buffalo that wanted to do something else! Life in rural Philippines had changed dramatically but in very remote locations, you can see a farmer with his buffaloes.
I don't know about you but planting the seeds of consciousness starts with preparing the mindset for a new thinking, acting, and doing. It is laying the ground work for future action that will take place in not so distant future. It happens in organizations that are thinking strategic, thinking long-term, and thinking about investing further along. Managers need to think carefully how to set the stage, create an environment where the status quo is no longer adequate to account for challenge, let alone, to compete effectively.
The best scenario is the one that comes from the decision-makers themselves and this goes not by serendipity but by actually nurturing and creating those needs for action, the ownership will be there, and of course, the resourcing will never be behind.
Leading from behind is more art than science. Let your nudge take them where you want them to go.
Fence-sitters and pretenders are scared people. They refuse to be involved or pretend to be involved but never to the scale that most people who are committed would. They ruin the possibilities for organizations because they not only favor the status quo but also block meaningful efforts to create waves and progress for the organization.
When you have fence sitters and pretenders, they sit on the sidelines, ensuring that things would hopefully get bad so they can pat themselves in the back and say, "see I told you guys, it wont work because....." There are too many people like that who refuse to be accountable for their actions and how it is affecting the whole organization.
If you are the manager, supervisor, or the boss of the company, make no mistake, these kinds of people are creating the kind of climate that do not serve the purpose of the business and ruin it all for everybody.
Don't put a decaying apple with the rest of the bunch. You know what will happen.
What is the most scary is when these people govern the organization and things are stalled for no logical reason than to protect what is expedient and 'normally done around here." First, they can't lead. Second, because they can't lead they micromanage. And third, they think they are being effective worst, being serving the organization well.
The good and bright people should muster the courage to step up to the plate and either eliminate or dilute the damage that these pretenders can inflict the organization. Ultimately, they should be caught and be rid of.
Is there any thing that you need to do less of, or stop doing completely?
Instead of putting more stuff on your plate, reflect on what you can get rid of it, literally in your closet or in your life.
A few examples:
1. Too much time watching TV, social media, or games watching
2. Researching and looking but never buying
3. Making excuses not to accomplish or complete an action, task, or project
4. Being overcritical but not committing to anything
5. Complaining on things that you cannot control
6. Taking on too much at one time
7. Not being able to say No! when it is more appropriate
8. Walk away from people or events that do no good to your life
9. Less time planning, more time doing things you love to do in the moment
10. Pleasing people to get their favor or sympathy
How about you? What are the elements in your life that needs to be trimmed or totally abandoned and forsaken? Find it out and have a clean slate for 2019.
Take care of yourself
1. Have enough sleep.
2. Take time to play within the day.
3. Eat healthy foods.
4. Keep a journal or notes for reflection.
5. Listen to soothing music.
6. Enjoy a quiet time with family.
7. Call a friend you didn't see for a long time.
8. Get moving by walking, running, or with a light exercise.
9. Clean your office desk or office room.
10. Pray for a loved one, friend, or a person you want touch.
11. Say a word of gratitude.
12. Enjoy lots of sunshine.
13. Take one step at a time.
14. Be kind to yourself.
15. Forgive and move on.