‘Coherence’: Navigating through a Dying and a Birthing in your business

Businesses are more dynamic than people realise. The organogram did us a massive disfavour in this regard by portraying businesses as being symmetrical, structured, and grid-like when, in fact, they are far more complex than that.

Today, something is dying in your business (eg. a strategic approach; a way of allocating capital; a way of seeing talent) and something is being born (eg. a refreshed culture, a change in leadership, a new market opportunity).

This is always the case. Something is always slipping in relevance and something is always gaining in relevance and the dying and birthing process is that playing out. That’s the nature of change, progress and evolution. 

This point of possibility is often missed because it doesn’t adhere to the existing cadence of a business – “We don’t do Strategy now. We do Strategy in September” –  or the CEO is so overwhelmed that they don’t have the presence of mind to recognise this point in the overall business journey.

This is always a crucial moment to pay attention to. Getting the timing wrong by waiting too long to kill something off, or prematurely creating something the business is not ready for can be extremely costly and time-consuming.

But there is a very simple way to crack this: by understanding the concept of ‘Coherence’

Coherence simply says some things belong in a business and some things don’t, and the CEO’s role is to oversee these subtractions and additions. This is a disarmingly elegant approach that I will be speaking and writing about a great deal in the coming months. 

It works because answers to tough questions appear naturally when approached through the lens of Coherence. Coherence doesn’t get caught in minutiae or trip over complexity. Something either belongs or it doesn’t belong. A binary choice.

Coherence is doubly helpful because the stage between Dying and Birthing is particularly fraught. Many people, accurately, call it the ‘messy middle’ and my last three weeks of work seem to be swamped by CEOs and businesses in this messy middle. 

Hence why a concept like Coherence is so useful.

Much more on this to come, but there is plenty on this piece to get you going. I would bet that a large majority of the roughly one thousand CEOs who read ‘CEO Mondays’ are in a messy middle and that there are choices to be made right now that would benefit from being seen through the lens of Coherence.

You May Also Be interested In

Engage with Lockstep

Found this article insightful? Contact Lockstep today to assist your business with world-class leadership solutions.