Eddie Obeng says in his Ted Talk on Smart Failure for a Fast Changing World that around 15 years ago, everything changed. All the so-called rules about how to run a business or organization were deleted, and a new set of rules emerged. Obeng calls the time at which everything changed Midnight, in a humorous fashion, because we didn’t notice it – we were ‘asleep’ when it happened. So we keep acting rationally in response to a world that we recognize and understand, but that no longer exists. The point at which everything changed is the point in time when pace of change around us actually started to exceed the pace of our learning.

Now we live in The World After Midnight. We play by the same rules as we did before, but we do not seem to get the same results. If you haven’t seen the talk, I’d advise you take a few minutes to watch it.

The question is, how do we thrive in the World After Midnight, a world full of exponential change? How do we cut through complex challenges? And how do we pass that skill on to our leaders, colleagues, teams and clients?

In a volatile and uncertain economy, we need practical tools, positive and productive ones, to make sense of what’s going on. We seek out “more than one right answer”, recognizing that each individual contributes a unique way of seeing the world. There could be an untapped wealth resting in a much wider set of stakeholders to our business. We need to share these ideas and this thinking, and to build shared visions of how we go forward.

Competing by the old rules no longer keeps you ahead of the pack. Full participation and deeper understanding helps us tackle complex issues. So do open and honest playing fields, where dominant personalities are neutralized and more people have space to speak up. In place of making decisions behind closed doors and then communicating the plans, we now need the contributions of many minds and hands.

There is a methodology that can unlock ideas and build shared models for the future. It is called LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY™. I have been working with this methodology for over 6 years now. In essence, we take the same bricks many of us played with as children, and bring them into the workplace to solution novel approaches. I believe that the LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® methodology is well suited to tackle the World After Midnight. Not only does it help participants clearly express their understanding of the current business conditions they face, the LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® methodology encourages innovative and creative thinking about the changes required to face the future.

I’ll be writing more about the actual technique, and sharing some case studies in the months to come. Join me.

Learn how to facilitate the LEGO® SERIOUS PLAY® methodology. Workshops scheduled for:

JHB 27th and 28th November

Cape Town 4th and 5th December

Email me on pete@teamgel.co.za

So what's next?

Give us a call on +27 11 463 2894 or send an email to info@teamgel.co.za.