Connecting the 4C's

Updated: Oct 13, 2019

There is a fundamental difference between Change which is incremental and Transformation that is disruptive in nature. What the planet needs now is the latter and not the former.



Renewing the enterprise to the context of the emerging economy requires the 4C's to be connected afresh.

The 29th Day Syndrome

This is an example to first understand the difference between Change and Transformation. When you go to a lake on day 1 and see placid waters and nothing else. By day 5 or 6 you see some weeds. And by day 15 - 20 a few more weeds scattered here and there. Even on day 28 the lake has a lot more weeds but you can still navigate on the lake. But lo and behold, you come on day 29 and the lake is full of weeds that have grown overnight and there is no way you can navigate on the lake.


As you see the weeds growing, if you take action and weed them out, it is Change Management. But now you are in a situation where you have to first clear the entire lake before you can navigate on it. You cannot afford to leave even a single weed. And this is Transformation. The single essential difference between Change and Transformation is that, the former keeps working on the status quo while the latter brings about a new that has no resemblance to the status quo. This is a transformation that is quite painful and is driven by a syndrome called “Burning Platform”. This kind of transformation needs a “Mind to Market” approach where it is sum zero game. You will either survive to see another season or day or perish. That is the status quo for every enterprise and business on this planet. The Transformation where the emphasis is on “Time to Market” is only possible when the “Mind to Market” provides engines, components and connectors that can be quickly assembled to different customer audiences (segmentation) and continue to sustain. Right now the very foundation of enterprises and businesses, whether they be incumbents or startups, is the same.


Making the Connection

This is where the connection matters. Conceptualization is the visualization of the models. This provides the inputs for shaping the culture - Values, Beliefs and Assumptions of the enterprise. This doesn’t happen overnight. People are huge control freaks and changing their capabilities - the Capacity / Willingness for Transformation and their Abilities / Skills for execution cannot happen without an aligned Personal Transformation. Which the leads to the configuration in terms of Structures, Synergies and Systems that need to be invested in. Such investments will pay off only with the requisite capabilities. Thus the 4C’s have a cascading conniption and have to be looked at in unison to prepare for a future that is entirely different in every possible way than how we see it currently.


Had enterprises been in a continued state of preparation, they would have anticipated and seen this need for transformation coming. But most of the corporations are just about waking up to the idea of transformation, some having taken false steps and others just waited to see how long they could navigate in these weeded waters.


Innovation is Non-Negotiable

The Mind to Market type of Innovation which is essentially the cycle of Invention to Innovation is an absolute must for every enterprise on this planet. In addition, the incumbent organizations have to also worry about the current business operation. The former is the mechanism or the engine for growth while the latter is the mechanism or engine for sustenance. Both are equally important and need to be addressed mutually inclusively.


In this new world the three S’ are extremely critical to be seen converging:
Structures: The enterprise needs to extend itself into its ecosystem and extended ecosystem. This is where maximum potential for value creation is.
Synergies: The synergies between these entities within the enterprise, ecosystem and extended ecosystem has to be of a collaborative nature and that too in realtime globally.
Systems: The systems must respond with a secure environment that preserves the identity and yet allows to co-create value.

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