Seth Godin on Survival Is Not Enough, Part 10

In his book, Survival Is Not Enough: Why Smart Companies Abandon Worry and Embrace Change, Seth Godin discusses how innovative organizations and individuals can apply prudent strategies in adapting and positioning themselves for the constant changes. []

These are some of my favorite concepts and takeaways from reading the book.

Chapter 10, Tactics for Accelerating Evolution

In this chapter, Seth discusses the tactics we can use to help our organization and people zoom and evolve. He offers the following observations and recommendations for us to think about:

  • Adding a charrette element to our projects can be productive. The power of the charrette is that when there is a hard stop on a project, people figure out how to prioritize their objections. In the meantime, we are still managing the process, but we need to have established an environment in which people can create without fear.
  • We need to start introducing new ideas regularly. This move can dramatically increase the pace and impact of memetic change within our organizations by creating artificial markers. Creating these opportunities and leveraging them is a positive step toward pushing the organization to zoom.
  • One approach for consistently coming up with new ideas is to have alternate teams that work on the project. The two groups can take advantage of the other team’s gems while learning from the other team’s mistakes. In addition, by alternating the teams, the internal competition and overlapping development cycles could accelerate the design and feedback process on all projects.
  • We should embrace the fact that better often beats perfect. Unfortunately, there is no such thing as the perfect solution in a competitive marketplace. By the time we develop perfect, our competition will probably have changed the landscape so much that our product will not even be good anymore.
  • When we embrace good instead of perfect, we open ourselves up to receiving feedback. The feedback can help us evolve our products and make them good enough where perfect might not matter.

In summary:

“Once a company understands the need to zoom, it can start to build tools that increase its ability to adapt to a changing environment.”