I always say that you have two options at the bottom of a well drown or start climbing. Well many businesses currently sit at the bottom of that well. The events that have transpired over the last four years since the onset of the current recessionary cycle, evidence the turbulent times all organisations face. While uncertainty is troubling, it is also the time of greatest opportunity when business is most turbulent.

Humans are happiest in static times and yet if one looks at when the greatest organisations started, it was during times of upheaval and turbulence. Greats like Ford, Rockefeller, Carnegie and J.P. Morgan emerged out of the shift from an agrarian to an industrial society. Companies like Hewlett-Packard, Apple Computer and Microsoft emerged from the shift to an electronic society. This leap to greatness is made possible by the state of turbulence where the traditional paradigms and norms that govern business are shattered. Companies and whole markets are driven to seek out new solutions to their problems as they strive for competitive advantage brought about by the forces of change.

We are well beyond the realms of management and informed creative thinking and decision-making can greatly enhance leaders’ ability to lead. Positivity is key and rather than mourn the loss of business or bemoan internal changes brought about by recessionary pressures or from intensified market competition, leaders need to exploit the new opportunities that present themselves in the prevailing market conditions. One thing is certain: organizations are not going back to the business models that governed them prior to 2007. They are seeking new ways to enhance productivity and profitability, and therein lies the opportunity for any leader who wishes to seek it out. However, each should acknowledge that in times of turbulence, the ability to anticipate problems, situations and opportunities dramatically increases their chances of success. The Sampson Hall Gordian model allows leaders to make informed decisions about their future and the Sampson Hall strategy model enables them to plan in a world of uncertainty. Both are key to an organisations survival in these modern economic times.

If leaders wish to take advantage of the turbulence in their markets they must apply informed creative thinking skills based on reality and yet forward looking to the future. They must step ‘outside the box’ and think imaginatively and yet not naively. Positivity is key and yet credibility is essential. Rigor needs to be applied from a futuristic perspective. The Sampson Hall tools stimulate a shift in thinking that allows leaders to design and develop new solutions to address their workplace and organisational problems. Not only do the tools help with the current position but they enable organisations to understand where they are and how much further they have to go. They identify potential by pinpointing available but oftentimes hidden opportunities. These tools will help the creative thinking process in an organisation, they will allow leaders to take informed decisions whilst understanding and mapping the possible consequences of their decision s and the future problems that they may come across along their path to success. However these tools will only suit organisations that have genuine ambition and the desire to remain competitive amongst their peers. Organisations that have used them do not look back.

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