Saturday, January 5, 2013

Change Is Hard: Part 2 ~ What Can We Learn From Theo & The Cubs?


Change is Hard ~ Part 2:
What Can We Learn From Theo & The Cubs?

The Chicago Cubs have not won the World Series since 1906, making them the longest running "losers" in North American Sports.  Their last World Series appearance in 1945, was marred by the infamous Billy Goat curse. In 1969 it was the "black cat" that ruined an otherwise stellar season.  Then, when it appeared the Cubs were finally headed back to the World Series in 2003, the Steve Bartman incident sent the Cubs home again.
Enter Theo Epstein, Change Agent.  Epstein helped erase the 96 year "Curse of the Bambino", while General Manager of the Boston Red Sox in 2003.  The Sox won again in 2006.

The Chicago Cubs hired "Theo The Great" in 2011, with hopes that Epstein can repeat this heroic feat in Wrigley Field.

Good luck Theo.  Why?  Because REAL change is hard.  The kind that makes a sustainable difference.  That allows you to not only win more games, but also multiple World Series.

Change is not just hard work.  Change is not just vision.  Real change is hard work and vision working together in harmony.

Change is a process.  A mindset.   It is an evolving, continuous fluid process. 

Epstein's long-range stratgic plan for the Cubs is involved.  Hundreds of pages "involved".  It is focused not just on the big picture, but also the small pieces; the fundamentals and culture that begin at the front end of the organization.

Much like any large company, the Cubs Major League Team functions like the Corporate Office.  A place where upper management & top sales people (players) make it all happen.  The minor leagues are much like the field personnel, the satellite offices and warehouses...where the groundwork or foundation is laid for this success.  What Epstein has learned is that the Cubs have been missing two mission critical items for years; (1) harvesting of talent (proper player development), and (2) one unified vision, one grand plan.  Without this in place, The Chicago Cubs will continue running the bases in futilty for another hundred years. 

Imagine this.  Each Minor League manager working on their own goal ~ to win games and move up the corporate ladder.  Does it sound wrong or bad?  No, not really.  However, if the real goal is to build up minor league talent and focus on the fundamentals, and not just winning games...then the organizational culture needs to change.  

The Chicago Cubs minor league farm system has historically been one of the most unproductive in the Minor Leagues.  There is a reason for this.  Lack of communication, leadership and focus.  Theo understands that to create sustainable change, the small fundamentals need to be in place to meet the organizational goals.

Somewhere, long ago, the small stuff like the communication and fundamentals got lost.  This wrecked the Cub's culture, the harvesting of talent and the ability to foster change...and a winning attitude.

What exacty does all of this have to do with critical documents and printing? 

Fundamental change can be hard.  Assessing and revising processes can be a challenge in any organization. 

Document driven processes & communcations are the lifeblood of any company.  Documents (printed or electronic) enable the workflow that drives the marketing engine, that moves the products (operations), so that finance can collect the money.  These are the small fundamentals. 

EVERY communication your company sends out is an opportunity to connect with the end customer in a meaningful and relevant way.  Marketing collateral, advertising,  packaging/shipping documents & communcations, billing.  All of these items touch the customer.  If all "communications" are not working in unison, a "black cat" event can be catastrophic for any organization.
Are your communications an area of competitive advantage for your company? 

Whether your company is in need of change, is in the process of changing, or has already changed...Reign can help your organization evaluate and measure the communication processes (documents, print, electronic) that drive the organization.  Using a consultative approach, Reign has the ability to look across the enterprise and make certain the "small things" connect with the corporate goals...and enable sustainable success in this ever-changing marketplace.  

Let us help you make certain all communications are cross-functional, on the same page and working in harmony to contain costs and maximize the message results. 

Call us today for a free assessment ~ Reign Sales @ 800.853.3552.

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