ANTIGENcy

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Inoculating companies against inaction, irrelevance, inflexibility and instability.

ANTIGENcy Presentation for Recruitcamp

Attached is a presentation I am giving at Recruitcamp at Quintiles Transnational in RTP, NC on Thursday, April 22. The presentation talks about where ANTIGENcy comes from, how it evolved and how the corporate antigens are conceived.

Take a peek and let me know what you think. And if you are so inclined, check out #recruitcamp Thursday the 22nd at Quintiles. http://www.recruitcamp.com.

antigencydeck2

Filed under: Innovation, management consulting, Properties of Antigens, , , , ,

Understanding Some Origins of Management Consulting

I was poking around Wikipedia, reading about “Formula for Change” created by Richard Beckhard and David Gleicher. I am curious how much applicability there is to ANTIGENcy in these models…and vice versa.

They created a model to help evaluate the propensity for an organization to change. It looks like this:

D x V x F > R

Three factors must be present for meaningful organizational change to take place. These factors are:
D = Dissatisfaction with how things are now;
V = Vision of what is possible;
F = First, concrete steps that can be taken towards the vision.

If the product of these three factors is greater than
R = Resistance,

then change is possible. Because of the multiplication of D, V and F, if any one is absent or low, then the product will be low and therefore not capable of overcoming the resistance.

To ensure a successful change it is necessary to use influence and strategic thinking in order to create vision and identify those crucial, early steps towards it. In addition, the organization must recognize and accept the dissatisfaction that exists by communicating industry trends, leadership ideas, best practice and competitive analysis to identify the necessity for change.

What this allows managers to do is to isolate the actual problem areas of change and develop unique strategies specifically designed to resolve the correct form of resistance.

Okay. So what this means is that given most organizations, like most people, have a hard time seeing introspectively, they are most likely to not change.

I like how this begins to isolate individual parts of resistance so they can be addresses “atomically” and all the players and pieces can enjoy more transparency.

I think every organization I have ever been with, worked for or against, had massive difficulty seeing and feeling the dissatisfaction. It is about admitting something. Like an alcholic admitting they have an important issue, they aren’t likely to.

The second variable, the vision of what’s possible, is the easy part. Who cannot see something better? This feels like table stakes.

The third variable is precisely what ANTIGENcy is about. Being able to isolate the specific challenges or friction an organization feels and doing something about it. Especially with respect to internal cultural dynamics.

In any case, I like how this formula helps people who know change is necessary see the possibility deconstructed.

If you are a CEO and your org’s performance isn’t what it should be, know that there will be ample resistance if you have the willingness to start change. I’ve been there and sludged through it. It isn’t pretty but for each time I have walked through the “tunnel of change, ” I learned to embrace the resistance and understand it from all angles before taking that first step.

Filed under: General, , , , , , , , , , ,

Corporate Antigens :: Application Along Nine Dimensions

ANTIGENcy is an unconventional framework to be applied to the conventions of business management. It allows people to anticipate and isolate weakness in their organizations by viewing them through the lens of immunology and epidemiology.

If immunology is about understanding and manipulating an immune system against unwanted strains, ANTIGENcy is about anticipating and understanding an organization’s weaknesses along several dimensions and doing something about it. Those dimensions, so far, are;
1. Strategic
2. Leadership
3. Culture (human capital)
4. External (marketing, advertising, etc.)
5. Technology
6. Operations (process & methods)
7. Sales (revenue & profit)
8. Environment (physical space & location)
9. Knowledge & learning

The ANTIGENcy strawman concept was created by mashing-up management consulting and vaccine science. This mash-up allows companies to gain prescience along these dimensions by proactively running through scenarios to address found weaknesses in each. Think “spectrum analysis.” These weaknesses can be found by creating antigens for which an organization can consequentially react/adapt to by developing antibodies.

Different than conventional and reactive challenge-solution approaches to management consulting, the ANTIGENcy model is recombinant and evolving. The more the approach is used, the more value it brings to the particpants by virtue of its growing database of management antigens and subsequent antibodies. The universe of antigens and antibodies are meant to grow and benefit their hosts progressively.

The ANTIGENcy model brings a the entire database of antigens to bear providing organizations a potential innoculation against unknown strains. While conventional management consulting is normally the pedestian application of known solution(s) to relatively known problem(s), ANTIGENcy is the broad and deliberate exposure to a spectrum of “challenges” with the goal of strengthening weaknesses that are both known and unknown.

The nascent goal of ANTIGENcy is to be run through open source means by a growing number of practitioners.

Filed under: General, , , , , , , , ,

Nosocomial = Infections From Within

There is a great term explaining infections that come from within a hospital. It is “nosocomial.” Because hospitals are essentially a zoo of rapidly mutating illnesses growing within people with compromised immune systems.

I liken this to many business cultures or communities. Within any company you will find cultures where “infections” are born, mutate and multiply under a specific management structure, leadership style or attitude. And they are always specific to one company.  When creative or innovative thinkers enter into this culture, they may be susceptible or become exposed to nosocomial strains.

Think about it. What do company cultures do to onboard new people? They get them in the door and begin acculturate them. If your culture is one that foster’s thinking, creativity, innovation and functions like a meritocracy, granted that is what you want, you first must have the right culture. Otherwise you are bringing new people into an environment where their “fit” is determined by how much they think like everyone else, to some extent. And if that baseline isn’t what will get your organization to point B, you have a problem.

We suggest you think carefully about the culture you foster. To what extent is that culture the one you know will support the future of your work. Conversely, how long until you infect the new gal with your specific strains. Or worse, kill them off.

Filed under: General, , , , , ,

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