Last week, the Department of Labor hosted a Learns and Works Conference in Connecticut featuring keynote speaker, Larry Quick on the topic of “disruption.” Ten to one – I bet you are feeling disrupted these days. Whether it be in your home life, your work life or both, disruption is just plain “unsettling.”

Yet the reality is – disruption can be a very good thing, if you let it be. Some of the key messages I got from Larry’s speech last week are: 1) we are all connected 2) we need to be focused on both immediate and emergent conditions 3) we all need to be better at managing strategic risk because the only way to capitalize on opportunity is to take calculated risks. Another way to look at it – once we recognize we are all part of the same game, keep our eye on the ball, and dance like no one is watching great things can happen – individually and collectively.

Larry gave the “Kodak” example of a great company that got it wrong – they focused on the future of “film,” when in reality, the emergent condition they needed to focus on was the future of “imagery.” We all know what happened there. Disruption is a given, and if you aren’t feeling disrupted now, wait for a minute and you will. So, prepare for it, embrace it and get ready for all the good it can bring.

Larry Quick is a strategist with significant global experience in both the corporate and civic sectors. He is the co-author of “Disrupted: Strategy for Exponential Change,” the original developer of the Strategy in Action framework and the founder of Resilient Futures.

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