Joel Barker and the Paradigm Shift

Category: Articles
Posted: 11-30-2010 04:05 AM
Views: 1870
Synopsis:

Futurist Joel Barker is a pioneer in the study of Paradigm Shifts. Paradigm shifts are a profound change in a business, industry or way of doing things. Businesses that are not ready for these shifts can whither and die. Even industry leaders are susceptible to a severe downturn. Barker has extensively studied how these changes happen and why companies and individuals are not more prepared for these changes. His work presented in the classic video The Business of Paradigms has unearthed several important reasons why this occurs and what organizations can do to be prepared for these shifts.

Futurist Joel Barker is a pioneer in the study of Paradigm Shifts. Paradigm shifts are a profound change in a business, industry or way of doing things. Businesses that are not ready for these shifts can whither and die. Even industry leaders are susceptible to a severe downturn. Barker has extensively studied how these changes happen and why companies and individuals are not more prepared for these changes. His work presented in the classic video The Business of Paradigms has unearthed several important reasons why this occurs and what organizations can do to be prepared for these shifts.

First of all, we need to confront the perceptions that can blind us to change. The paradigm that we are currently engaged in is very powerful to our every thought. Businesses have built themselves completely around the current paradigm and their thoughts and systems are totally focused around this paradigm. Therefore, when a new paradigm starts to rear it's head we are not ready for it's arrival. We are so engaged in the administration of our business and life that we are blind to the new paradigm. We haven't allowed ourselves the opportunity to see it.

Secondly, we need to transform the fear of change into flexible, open attitudes It is natural to fear change. It upsets the apple cart so to speak. Change can be seen as a hinderance. More of a problem than an opportunity. Change disrupts our carefully constructed lives and makes us fear the unknown. A flexible open attitude is the only way to meet change head on without fear. Accepting change as a natural, normal part of life is the only way to succeed in a world that will not slow down for us.

Next we need to understand the impact of paradigm paralysis. Because all of our systems and attitudes are based around the current paradigm, it is extremely difficult for an individual or organization to shift to or recognize a new paradigm. Organizations become paralyzed within their paradigm. Finding the balance between working within the current paradigm, but not becoming trapped within that paradigm is imperative in a 21st century business.

Lastly, we need to recognize previously hidden opportunities. Opportunities are everywhere if our eyes are open to them, but our noses are so close to the grindstone that they are invisible. Every level of an organization needs to be built upon change and innovation. An organization should never be static. Building an company this way will it's eyes open where they once were closed.

Joel Barker's work has presented companies and organizations with a road map to handle paradigm shifts. Following the simple steps he has presented will help guide businesses through the difficult times associated with profound change.

Charlie Bentson King is a writer and producer of training videos for TrainingABC. TrainingABC is a distributor of Joel Barker videos like The Business of Paradigms.

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