top of page
  • Writer's pictureBarry Borgerson

The Necessity to Manage Culture Changes Systematically

Updated: Jan 20, 2021

Business-Environment Tsunamis:

Two huge, unrelated earthquakes in the global business ocean have unleashed massive business environment tsunamis that will lead to widespread and on-going career derailments and business failures for those leaders and companies that do not address these disruptions explicitly and quickly. Both of these events will require leaders to learn how to change their cultures more systematically than most currently know how to achieve. The most visible tsunami is the coronavirus pandemic that is already creating massive turmoil in global economies and many businesses. It will continue to change how businesses operate in fundamental ways. The other tsunami will create escalating ongoing changes throughout business environments. It is the Fourth Industrial Revolution. You don‟t need to take my word for that; you will see below some penetrating observations from Prof. Klaus Schwab, founder and perennial chair of the World Economic (Davos) Forum.

The Human Ramifications of the Fourth Industrial Revolution:

Here are some human ramifications of the technology tsunami that Prof. Schwab identifies in his prescient book, The Fourth Industrial Revolution, which he asserts most business leaders cannot manage adequately. “The question for all industries and companies, without exception, is no longer "Am I going to be disrupted?" but "When is disruption coming, what form will it take, and how will it affect me and my organization?" “The changes are so profound that, from the perspective of human history, there has never been a time of greater promise or potential peril.” All business leaders should heed and immediately take actions to respond to this insightful advice from Prof. Schwab since he is well positioned to understand these trends. Schwab offers other urgent warnings for business leaders, including “My concern, however, is that decision-makers are too often caught in traditional, linear (and non-disruptive) thinking” and “The fundamental and global nature of this revolution means it will affect and be influenced by all countries, economies, sectors, and people.” He also identifies necessary characteristics of future successful executives, “it is a leader's ability to continually learn, adapt, and challenge his or her own conceptual and operating models of success that will distinguish the next generation of successful business leaders.” This technology revolution will affect you in debilitating ways if you don't learn to transform business cultures (conceptual and operating models) reliably, systematically, and quickly by addressing the underlying mental mechanisms of automatic human activities that otherwise naturally block incorporating disruptive innovations and other types of relentless business-environment changes. As if that was not a compelling enough incentive to take actions to learn to transform cultures systematically and quickly, we now have a huge nontechnology force disrupting businesses.

The Business Consequences of the Global Covid-19 Pandemic:

The destructive global covid-19 tsunami will have seismic impacts on how most industries, companies, and leaders operate, which will in turn affect other industries and individual companies that rely on them or sell to them. For this tsunami, “When is disruption coming?” is manifestly now! So, what actions can you take to conquer these accelerating culture-change imperatives?

Creating Systematic Culture Changes – Become Transformable!

The twin disruptive tsunamis have now painfully exposed an unfortunate artifact of human nature because our involuntary “robots within” certainty “lenses” dysfunctionally block us from systematically making needed internal culture changes even though immense external business environment disruptions are crashing over us, and their impacts will only accelerate. The choice leaders must now face is to let this business-environment turmoil happen to them or to take decisive actions to become transformable. That is, don't make the mistake of striving just to survive these changes but catch the next wave of successes by acquiring methodical transforming capabilities that empower you to make rapid, systematic culture changes so you can achieve repeated successes in the new future.

Structural Competitive Advantages for Leaders and Companies

You just saw a brief overview that the world around you is unstoppably changing on an enormous scale. No matter how much success you achieved in the past, if you succumb to the natural human drive to stay the course, you will take the unnecessary risk of creating negative consequences for yourself and your company. If you decide for whatever reason that you don't want to take actions to become transformable, you will miss out on the opportunity to understand a new path to overcome the deficiencies most leaders experience to making systematic, rapid culture changes. The problems that Schwab identifies and many more occur because we have enormous capabilities to solve problems in the physical world to create our great technologies and products but we curretly lack the ability to solve the human ramifications of these technologies including to our businesses. You should not ignore the dysfunction alerts from the visionary who runs the World Economic Forum nor miss your chance to learn about fundamental new mechanisms to overcome the specific obstacles he identifies for us. You need to learn how to manage those activities we all execute automatically including our bad habits and our chronic difficulties in changing business cultures at a rate commensurate with our current and escalating needs. You can learn how to create a new form of competitive advantage for yourself and your company by reading the free white paper, The Fourth Industrial Revolution Requires Leaders and Businesses to Become Transformable! at

27 views0 comments


bottom of page