Reinvention – not another buzzword

Kerry Graham writes in Pro Bono News about a need for the social services sector to reinvent itself

I’m glad Kerry referred to reinvention as a ‘buzzword’. I can recall attending a job interview back in 1998 where some spotty faced graduate said to me in a squeaky voice, ‘so you are reinventing yourself.’

Kramer, Porter and Hamel from MiX are correct in suggesting that we need to collaborate more, however there is nothing new in their thinking – management commentators have been talking about collaboration for the past 30 years, and we are no closer to achieving that holy grail. Crickey, most organisations are terrible at internal collaboration, I have no idea how we would get entire sectors to collaborate with each other. Unless, we took the time to learn what it is each needs and were prepared to work together towards a common dream or vision, while accepting we each will not get everything we want. How difficult can it be? A part of the problem might be that we don’t trust ourselves or anyone else.

We don’t need to reinvent ourselves. We have everything we need to achieve anything we want to achieve. We have the ability to dream up creative solutions, to have positive conversations, to share and to learn from each other. We have the tools – we just fail to learn how to use them. We need to rediscover the pleasure of working together towards a common dream. We need to share our understanding of society so that we come up with solutions that address the root cause of problems in our society.

Let’s forget the buzzwords and get back to basics. Let’s form communities of interest where people come together just to share ideas (because we can). Then let’s take those ideas and ask what can we do, rather than ask, what can we not do? What will follow would be known as collaboration and reinvention, back in the days before the Internet, Social Media and online forums!

Those are my thoughts for the day
John Coxon


About John Coxon

Principal consultant for John Coxon & Associates, a management consultancy working with boards and management teams in healthcare, aged care and not for profit organisations to develop effective strategic planning processes and social enterprise business plans
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2 Responses to Reinvention – not another buzzword

  1. ijpeters66 says:

    I could not agree more with what you are saying here. How often do we make things more difficult than they have to be. I remember when I was working within the NFP sector trying to work in collaboration with other service providers to assist clients only to be blocked by bureaucratic red tape, when all that was really needed was to sit down and have the converstation.

    • John Coxon says:

      Hello Ian
      good to hear from you. thanks for your comment. in today’s ‘technological’ world we sometimes forget the basics, and so much can achieved through conversation, collaboration and common sense. so many barriers are created, so much suspicion and so much conflict by not doing the basics in the first place

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