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Planning for Positive Change

Why do human beings do what we do, or just as importantly, why don’t we make changes when logically and realistically we need to act differently for our own sake?

It’s a strange behaviour when you stand back and observe it.

Change is important because it is a natural force in the Universe and most of us want our firms to grow, our clients’ businesses to grow and our clients’ wealth to grow.

Which of course, all needs change.

In the USA, Carol Dweck a leading professor in the field of education has found that people do sustainably better when they have an ‘open growth mindset’, as opposed to a ‘fixed mindset’.

In other words, they see themselves as able to change and learn. Our job as advisors to our clients is to encourage an ongoing growth mindset that regularly looks as to what’s possible.

Looking forward as to what’s possible is a very different mindset to looking back as to why it happened in the first place and essentially, this is one of the major differences between our existing primarily compliance role and our developing future advisory role.

We live in a world where change is rapid and businesses have to be vibrant and ready to refine strategies to accommodate external changes.

When mountaineers climb Everest, they have several base camps that they stay overnight at, to acclimatise and even go up and come down again, until they are ready to go for the summit.

I’m sure you have heard it many times before, but in terms of business, “How do you eat an elephant?” truly is the answer, “One spoonful at a time” and so it is with strategic growth and change.

Success really is a process, not a one-off event and when it comes to new client-centric advisory services, this actually defines the core of a most trusted advisor role, in comparison to one of a one-off technical problem solver.

When helping clients strategically grow, we don’t want zig-zags, we want a steady strategic curve or route, that gets refined to match changing circumstances, but still hones unerringly on the owners’ goals.

Prior to the Digital Age and in a more hierarchal society, we had an established command and control structure in business that people accepted and especially in the profession.

Performance levels were limited and very few people delivered discretionary input, but businesses still thrived.

Nowadays people need to be engaged with and operate in an environment of empowerment, if we are to enjoy that elusive goal of employee discretionary effort – and the key is in the word discretionary!