Posted On: January 5, 2023
The days of the old saying, ‘if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it’ are long gone. The lessons of 2020/2021 have proven this to be the case. We don’t work the same way, we don’t buy the same way, and we don’t expect the same things in the way we expected them before. But what does this mean in our industry? What changes have we seen that we’re not rethinking how or why we do what we’ve always done.
Paradigms are a series of peaceful interludes punctuated by intellectually violent revolutions. For example, the introduction of personal computing devices capable of accessing the world wide web. Leading edge computer geniuses led and created the revolution we are experienced in today- business at our fingertips. This shift has changed our societal structure from industrial hands-on labor to global-based service industries impacting our decisions. Think back to that time and remember just how many of your employees pushed back at the introduction of computers to perform their responsibilities. Now can they imagine conducting business without a computer? We can all remember a time when the World Wide Web was thought to be a fad and not far reaching enough to impact HVAC. 5 Now dealers demand online ordering and inventory status, and you expect the same from your OEM. Old ways of doing things can and do get in the way of doing business but thankfully, change agents drove us through the technology revolution. Just a single shifting thought can change the real-world making people more aware that the current reality is not what has to be. When a paradigm shift is underway, it broadens the knowledge of everyone who is affected, and it will be driven by agents of change (thanks Steve Jobs). In HVAC organizations such as yours, it’s a revolution or metamorphosis of change lead by a few.
An organizational paradigm as a broad set of norms, values, and practices guiding decision making and employee culture must be challenged by your change agents to drive the organization forward. They seek a better understanding of the new more dynamic mission, and how to achieve it when it seems impossible. It requires leaders, employees, and customers to be involved and that requires better relationships and collaboration for more creativity and innovation to flourish. In business today, it happened when we all changed the way we worked to support our customers and maintain our culture.
Shift happens when the usual way of thinking or doing something is replaced by a new and different way. As leaders, you need to fully understand why you need to take a truly revolutionary approach to develop the plan around the mission. It’s more than getting the company from point A to point B. It requires understanding your organization’s full potential and it starts with understanding your current state.