Pressing Forward Into Uncertainty

When the business environment becomes uncertain, many organizations tend to pull in, focusing only on the “essentials.” Today’s environment redefines uncertainty. Can change leaders still make a case for Inclusion as the HOWSM as a business essential in these times of dramatic uncertainty and change? The answer is emphatically yes—and the reason lies, ironically, in the uncertainty itself.

As recently as 30 years ago, the marketplace changed little from year to year, and organizations could get by on the knowledge of a few senior leaders or subject matter experts. Today, with the advent of the Internet, the breathtaking pace of technological breakthroughs, the speed and complexity of the global marketplace, and other seismic changes, market realities can change significantly from month to month. That leaves organizations with a myriad of unknowns and unknowables.

However, unknowns are not always unknown to everyone. Sales professionals or call center members, for instance, might have critical market knowledge that senior leaders do not have. Input from front line team members, people in the research and development function, or others might help the organization resolve otherwise unresolvable challenges.

The knowledge to face the uncertainty is often already in the organization and/or with customers. The challenge is to access it.

That is where Inclusion as the HOWSM comes in. Including the right people, with the right information, at the right time can help a create 360-degree vision of a situation in key discussions on each issue. By ensuring that people are heard and valued for their contribution, Inclusion as the HOWSM dramatically enhances trust and collaboration across the organization. Trust and collaboration increase speed of knowledge transfer and application. The contribution of more perspectives provides that 360-degree view on the issue—and thus the ability to address it more effectively and more quickly. 

As people interact this way across the organization, some of the unknowns become more known. The unknowables become more knowable. Problems get raised and solved more quickly. Inclusion as the HOWSM helps the organization and its people navigate through uncertainty by tapping into a wider range of perspectives.