Vijay Govindarajan is one smart cookie. He is the Earl C. Daum 1924 Professor of International Economics at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College. I was fortunate to participate in a retreat he lead for our company when I was in the business world a while back and was really struck by his powers of insightful observation and his ability to keep things simple.
This past August I heard him speak at the Global Leadership Summit in Suburban Chicago. He hasn’t lost either of his skills. A recent book of his proved that. It is Reverse Innovation: Create Far from Home, Win Everywhere.
I want to focus on one point of his book, thought I urge you to pick it up and read it yourself. The professor conducted years of study on innovation and found one consistent roadblock to innovation (or change). He calls is “dominant logic”.
Dominant logic is “what you have learned, what you have seen, what has brought you your greatest success”. He goes on so far as to say dominant logic is something you must forget if you intend to innovate, drive change through your ministry, get different results.
As you wrap up your strategy and action plan for 2014, how are you handling your ministry’s dominant logic? Are you sure you have not overly protected your standard processes, approaches, and your assumptions? Have you really pushed the envelope to try something really innovative to offer new assistance for your chosen client population or to solve those organizational problems that just don’t go away?
And, at the board level, have you let standard operating procedures keep your board from adopting new nonprofit board best practices? If you keep doing the same things at the board level, and keep doing the same things at the staff level, you will always get the same results…What does your ministry need to let go of in 2014 so necessary changes and innovation can be implemented?