This year's Super Bowl was fun to watch, even for me. My spouse called it the best...game...ever! What will live in infamy was that last call made by Pete Carroll, the Seahawk's coach. Everyone was talking about it. Those that gave him a fair shake understood why he made the call he made, but it was likely that other outcomes were not considered possibilities. That came back to bite them big time.
When it comes to purposeful work cultures, environments, and experiences, the design should be considered with not only the context in mind, but also the possible outcomes that might make a difference. You could have the best design in the world, but if the implementation stinks and sustainability can't be achieved with people, then you have a lot of wasted time and lost potential. That is why change management is a key part of the DOWE model and process. An organization's transformation brings the design to life.
That all being said, you can't anticipate for everything. There will be failures. We should live in workplaces (and societies) that allow for failure as learning opportunities to be celebrated. Let's let up on Mr. Carroll here--any one of us could be in the same type of situation, even if we aren't NFL coaches at the Super Bowl. He's a smart man who's strategy didn't work as planned. Haven't we all been there?
2/5/15 Update: Matt Lauer's interview with Pete Carroll happened to be on when I ate my breakfast this morning. Here are some sound bytes I jotted down quickly to illustrate:
"I'm an optimistic person...it's the way I'm wired."
My reaction: Good for you Pete Carroll, and I love that it is what drives your decisions and your philosophy after the fact.
"...never make a call thinking it's gonna go bad." My reaction: Thanks for confirming my suspicion, but I encourage that optimism with a healthy dose of planning for other outcomes. Even if he reaches the same decision again and has the same outcome, he has the right attitude about being positive.
It wasn't a bad call, "it was the worst result of a call" My reaction: This is the piece that I refer to above--sometimes you can't anticipate for everything. And sometimes it is the worst case scenario that happens. The test is what we do thereafter.
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