Yesterday I wrote a post withwarning signs for organizations which are in a season of fast growth. When the pace is quick, we sometimes are blind to things that could trip us up.
On the other hand, when your organization has stopped growing or is in decline, there are also some traps that are easy to fall into...
- We forget the mission. We are frustrated by the lack of growth and so we allow the mission to be lost in charts, budgets and forecasts.
- We mess with too many variables. We change 8 things all at once. Perhaps 2 of them were great ideas and 6 were bad ideas. The end result might be neutral and we have no idea what worked and what didn't.
- We pay too much attention to the loudest voices. We never listened to the complainers before, but suddenly we wonder if they might be right.
- We candy-coat the issues. In an effort to be positive and paint the picture of a brighter future, we make things appear rosier than they are.
- We focus more on the back door ("Why are they leaving") than the front door ("Why aren't they coming?").
- We become too internally focused. We spend more and more time pleasing existing "customers" and much less time working on winning new "customers."
- We turn down jump the curve ideas because we are too focused on maintenance and have lost our will to risk.
- We spend time trying to pin blame on the lack of growth rather than getting to the source of the problem.
- We look everywhere else for the issue and don't take time to look inside. "What if it's me?" is too hard to ask.
- We lose faith. We reflect on yesterday as though it could never happen again.
Where am I wrong? Where am I right? What am I missing?