In a world where everything is changing rapidly, the old rules no longer apply. The structures, strategies and processes that once created successful organizations are not sustainable today. You’ve heard the refrain – funding is disappearing, we don’t have enough money, there aren’t enough volunteers. We know things aren’t working. And yet, we remain attached to the status quo and traditional ways of doing things. Change is difficult and uncomfortable – and we resist it.
Recently, Chip Wilson (founder of Lululemon) challenged 600 people at a Public Salon to re-examine their personal status quo with this statement:
“What got you to where you are isn’t going to get you to where you’re going.”
This simple sentence has been running through my mind ever since. I have it on a post in note at my desk, shared it in a workshop last week, and wrote it on the white board in our lunchroom. The words evoke learning, transformation, accomplishment and opportunity. It strikes me as a succinct, compelling summary of our “vantage point” on the not-for-profit sector, and volunteer management in particular. Change is not optional. It’s an imperative, if organizations are to thrive in the future.
What if we fully embraced that truth? Could we then begin to completely reimagine our community organizations? Might we begin to let go of old structures and engage people differently? Would we invite the abundance of brilliant and dedicated people into our organizations – to contribute their time and talent in new ways?
What if we did? I can only begin to imagine the transformative models, imaginative strategies, and ingenious processes we’d create... and where we’d ultimately go – together.