New Wine for New Times
A story has long been told, in the writings of a first century physician named Luke, about the consequences of pouring NEW wine into OLD wineskins; or trying to patch an OLD garment with NEW cloth.
"The result," said the wise physician, "is that OLD wineskins will be burst open by the potent NEW wine." In the same way, a new patch sewn over a tear in an old garment only makes the tear worse, as it's never a perfect match.
The moral of Luke's story? Let me apply it to today.
Insisting that certain people adopt a "new and better way" of doing something can actually make a situation worse.
On the other hand, some people are so stuck in a rut, so bogged down in their old way of doing things that they would reject something NEW, even if it showed all the earmarks of bringing major improvements into their business and personal lives.
Without even trying a new method these types of individuals will insist, "The old is better!" And trying to convince or force them to except a different NEW way could be counterproductive. It just doesn't match their personality. But take note: it's anyone's personal choice to accept or dismiss a proven better way!
It saddens me when business owners and managers share their fears that they "would lose half" of their staff if they insisted they follow set procedures or abide by strict quality systems. These owner/managers seem to have resigned themselves to the OLD method—"business as usual"—even if that "business" isn't and hasn't been working for them.
I guess some people will just set themselves to ignore the pain rather than find a cure! I'm sure Luke the physician was very familiar with that method, back in the day!
Leadership, like a ship in the lead, faces opposing winds in order to make headway but knows how to change course when necessary.
To cure your business, it may take getting NEW skin in the game to allow for the new wine of fresh ideas, maybe replacing a few old "wineskins" that are likely to burst when tested.
In our day, Luke might say, "It may take discarding some soiled old garments that are soiling the rest of the garments in your business and finding new garments that match the new patches of fresh thought. NEW wine for NEW times!"
Did I mention? Great Systems Work!
Philip Beyer, founder/president of Ebiz Products LLC and founder of Beyer Printing Inc. in Nashville Tenn., is a chronic entrepreneur, business systems analyst and consultant. Author of "System Busters: How to Stop Them in Your Business" and recipient of an InterTech Technology Award for the design and development of System100 business process management software. Beyer speaks to business owners across the country on how to bring lean, sustainable order to their businesses. Contact him at (615) 425-2652.