Title: The Reinventors: How Extraordinary Companies Pursue Radical Continuous Change
Author(s): Jason Jennings
The author and associated researchers screened about 22,000 companies, including some of the most successful stories of companies that survived 2008 recession. This book, first published in 2012, has a very specific goal: find out HOW the best companies pursue NEVER-ENDING RADICAL CHANGE.
Where do you fit in? The author says:
“Your job AS YOU KNOW IT and your business AS IT IS CURRENTLY RUN will eventually change. The ONLY CHANCE any of us have for prosperity is to CONSTANTLY REIMAGINE, RETHINK, and REINVENT EVERYTHING WE DO and how we do it in order to remain relevant. We all must become REINVENTORS, and we’d better do it quickly.“
Where does one begin? First step is to let-go of old notions like “some things can’t be changed”, “nothing new is possible here”, etc. This requires letting-go of your cherished beliefs and current ways of doing everything. Everything goes under the knife. All thinking and methods. This is only possible if you can let go of your ego (Chapter 2 – Letting Go).
Next is to find a new disruptive destination – could be in the same organization or in a related business – or a totally new venture. Then, go out and kiss a few frogs. That is, invent a few bold experiments – at least a few small new bets. Worried about goofing-up? Well, here is an unexpected discovery from a Harvard research – successful teams fail more often. Quoting from the book:
“Harvard was studying acute-care hospitals and other settings, including executive boardrooms. The results were consistent: Teams led by the best leaders made significantly more errors.”
Allowing room for MORE mistakes is just the beginning. F. Scott Fitzgerald once wrote an essay called “The Crack-Up” where he said:
“The test of a first-rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function.”
As shared in this book, successful re-invention REQUIRES you to be comfortable with opposing ideas like:
- FOCUS on a clear destination and search for new horizons.
- Take BIG RISKS and small bets
- Be frugal and still splurge
And, my personal favorite:
- Be highly creative and obsessively down-to-earth
And…..the BIGGEST of them all:
-To Reinvent SYSTEMATIZE EVERYTHING.
Have I lost you? Well, why not try checking out the book yourself? The FINAL chapter #9 is aptly titled, “DON’T HESITATE”. The superstition is that curiosity killed the cat, but, in reality, hesitating cats never discover new fortunes. The 9th chapter can help you come out of your comfort zone, hesitation and fears.
Happy discovering and creating new fortunes!