My far better half’s difficulties with getting her “circle” of church women to embrace modern communications is a cautionary tale for the workplace. Her circle dates back to the 1870s and some members have been part of it for half those years. They have had a very traditional line of communication that has not adapted well to a world of cell phones, text messages, and social media. Something as simple as changing the meeting room causes no end of trouble. Many members see no reason to change and expect the schedule to be set in the monthly newsletter, which is to be mailed to their home on the 16th of each month.
You, regular reader, already see the error of this approach. But are you doing much the same thing in your organization? Are resources devoted to the slavish production of immediately out-of-date reports that could be better used elsewhere? Do you cater to the demands of some team members rather than deal with their emotional over-reactions? Does a rigid chain-of-command prevent rapid course correction?
Change is never easy; the longer things are at rest the more difficult it is to get them moving again. Seventy years of “rest” is proving to be very challenging for my wife, but she is chipping away at it. A new “phone tree” has been recreated and new officers elected. Getting the old officers to relinquish control is the next step — something many readers are no doubt familiar with. The goal is a revived “circle” with the core values of the old one; an organization prepared to thrive in the 21st Century; an objective not foreign to gear companies or other business organizations.
AGMA is undergoing an exciting change with the move into trade magazine ownership. The intent is to keep everything readers currently like about our publications while finding ways to make them even more useful and dynamic to subscribers, advertisers, and other stakeholders.