The idea of control is attractive.
But in times of change, turbulence, and uncertainty (which is almost all the time now), if you control, you will fail.
Instead, you have to improvise.
To improvise, you have to postpone all decisions until you’ve first listened to what’s happening in your context. That’s called being present, and it’s one of the principles of Jazz.
In response to my post from a few days ago, Control Is For Beginners, Carl Stormer, founder of Jazzcode, replied with more details about improvisation and adaptation in business.
I’m sharing his words with you here, and with his permission:
Thank you for bringing this up. My wife Ane came up with this slogan in her book about the aftermath of her stroke (Da jeg døde, Pax 2011, only published in Norwegian, unfortunately).
How to influence when you are out of control? It starts with understanding the system, trusting your team, and mastering your instrument, among other things. The idea is also that if you are out of control, you need to “accept the offer”, in other words, start looking for opportunities rather than worry about loss and resisting. Robert Poynton has written a great book called Do/Improvise – Less push, more pause, better results. He suggests that you get results when you accept the offer by a) letting go, b) noticing more, and c) using everything. Check out more at https://jazzcode.com or look at Poynton – https://www.robertpoynton.com
Carl didn’t mention that he also has an astonishing talk during which he demonstrates on stage the power of improvisation and how you can build more sustainable organizations with it.
So, accept my offer and take a moment to watch and listen. You’ll love it, I am sure.