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VDTA Member Only MAy 2017

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Today's Rebels Will Create Tomorrow's Best Practices

Today's Rebels by Okel

You must realize that at some point, your best practices will become obsolete. It could be a case of technology changing, the marketplace evolving, or your success from old processes feeling like a shoe that's suddenly too small.

In any case, you'll need to change. And yet, many will double down on old best practices simply because they are comfortable. This continues as the business experiences diminishing returns.

A resistance to change can represent the express lane to failure. What happens is that organizations fail to grow, change, and innovate.

To prevent this downward spiral, consider the fact that tomorrow's best practices will likely be different from today's processes. Often they'll be started by people who might otherwise be considered rebels in your organization.

They are the kind of people who ask, "Why do we do this?" and "What if we changed?" And they may not naturally want to follow all of the rules.

To those who oppose change, these are radical thoughts and unwelcome questions. But these rebels may discover new truths.

For example, there was a time when documents were either mailed or sent by courier to a business. One day, someone decided to take advantage of a new machine called the fax to carry out this task. This was a game changer for businesses that were open to trying something new. The process continued when the same document sharing could be handled through the Internet.

In the early days of faxes, I'm sure there were those who resisted the change. Eventually, they came around to the new best practice but perhaps not before they lost some business due to a slower process.

You want innovation and new ideas, but first you must create a culture where people are free to ask, "What if?" Do people on your team have time to innovate and explore new ideas? And will you consider them, or reconsider them, should some variable change?

While it's good to have a team that's agreeable to your views, you also want some who think differently than the rest. Even a new idea that doesn't work can teach an important lesson. Encourage, supervise, and honor your rebels.

Ken OkelAbout the Author: Ken Okel speaks to smart leaders and associations who want to unleash employee production, performance, and profitability. He introduces them to lessons learned from his time in TV News, Disaster Relief, and running a Professional Ballet Company.

He is the author of the book, Stuck on Yellow: Stop Stalling, Get Serious, and and the host of the 2 Minute Takeaway Podcast. Ken's weekly productivity tips can be found at: www.KenOkel.com.

Reprinted from Floor Care & Central Vac Professional & SQE Professional, May 2017