The New Normal

Roger McNamee calls the times in which we are now living, The New Normal. It’s a time of great uncertainty—about terrorism, corporate scandals, the outsourcing of jobs overseas, and more. The old predictable safety nets such as a lifelong career with one company aren’t coming back, even when the economy recovers. The good news is that the New Normal offers tremendous opportunities as well. Mr. McNamee, a successful venture capitalist and rock musician, explains how to make the most of your life, career, and money by embracing the future.

The New Normal is the era of the individual. In companies of all sizes, each person now matters more than ever! From the Fast Company interview with Mr. McNamee:

In the case of the New Normal, that means unlearning most of the principles of the past decade. Forget everything that you’ve learned about time (faster is better), money (capital is free), and leadership (no experience required). “Everything takes longer in the New Normal,” says McNamee. “Longer is better than never, but it requires a different frame of reference…”

In the New Normal, the trick is to get real about the new set of challenges we face and what it takes to win in an environment where there are no shortcuts…

In the New Normal, the big shift is from a focus on growing market capitalization to a focus on creating real economic value.

…What this means for entrepreneurs is that not only is it not enough to have a great product or service idea, it’s also not enough to have a rigorous, detailed plan, a deep understanding of the customer, a go-to-market strategy, and a team that can get it done. You also have to have paying customers signed up.

<In terms of leadership> The late ’90s were all about people who looked good in the spotlight. I call it the CNBC CEO. Now it’s about people who get things done… we need more leaders who aren’t afraid to act in the midst of uncertainty. The problem with the New Normal is that there’s no obvious one-size-fits-all strategy. And in the absence of an obvious strategy, most people would like to change as few things as possible. People are paralyzed when it comes to setting meaningful strategy. That’s why flexibility and responsiveness are the most critical skills of the New Normal leader.

We at wHolistic ChangeSM focus on the impact of organizational change to the people affected by the change: employees at all levels as well as the customers they serve. The New Normal highlights the fact that the ways leaders learned to lead in the past need to be revisited in light of the changing times in which we live.


About Michelle Smeby

Michelle Smeby is CEO of wHolistic Change, Inc. with more than 10 years of experience implementing enterprise solutions at Fortune 100 companies. Michelle specializes in helping corporations deliver transformational change.
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