Overview.  A key component to running your business, a clear head, can be challenging to maintain. This is especially true when experiencing success. This may sound odd but it often is just the reality of the situation. Growth and profitability take us to the next set of challenges that must be addressed in order to sustain.

Now, I am a big believer everything is simple when the right vantage point is found. The trick is having the right frame of mind which is a lens through which the situation is viewed.

Being able to focus is essential in finding that vantage point.if problems are going to be solved and success achieved. This blog covers what the appropriate focus is for defining the 5 challenges you can face.

The 5 challenges are reflected in the 5 five frames of mind described in Complexity Theory:

  • Simple
  • Complicated
  • Complex
  • Chaotic
  • Random

Let’s go through them. See which of them apply to your situation.

Simple.  With simple the rules work. The problem is out-of-bounds behavior occurring. You simply reference the policies/procedures and rules you have in place and get back to doing things right and achieve the deliverables. This is where money is made unless your company is being paid to explore the other areas listed below. Consequently, driving to simple as much as possible is always the goal.

Complicated. With complicated the rules work but the problem is there are several sets from which to choose.  For example, you may have a core product, such as sheet metal manufacturing, wedding photography, consulting services, home repair, course offerings, etc., that you are willing to modify based on specific client needs. The challenge is deciding how, exactly, those specific needs are to be met.

Complex. With complex the problem is the rules, to some extent, aren’t working and something new is needed. This is where excessive, spontaneous overtime starts occurring. Every client is beginning to feel their needs are a “one-off” and the continuity of your work flow is fragmenting.

Chaotic. With chaotic there are general thoughts but the problem is there are no specific, implementable rules. Once you go one level down below the strategic level organization disappears.

One is left only with intention. These intentions may be quite strong and there may be a great deal of belief in future success but, again, the situation “has no legs.” There is a talking-the-talk but no implementation of walking-the-walk.

Random. With random there is just a bunch of ideas with no particular structure. This is what I call the “coffee shop” stage where ideas are being kicked around but there is no coherent structure even at the “10,000 foot view.”

Share this blog with those around you and get their input. See if you can figure out what challenges they perceive and where they lie on the spectrum ranging from simple to chaotic.

Also, another blog, Solutions To The 5 Types of Challenging Situations, provides the methods needed to generate solutions to these situations.

For more information regarding change management and how you can get your arms around it download my free e-book, Mindset – 5 Simple Ways To Look At Complex Problems.