There is a common misconception that change is happening faster. Yet in reality, the change signals are often visible on the horizon well before they become visible in mainstream business. Change is like a chameleon that changes as it moves through its own lifecycle:
- Single Event – It starts with a single event,
- Isolated Events – It then appears on the horizon as a series of seemingly unrelated events
- Connected Events – It then becomes a trend, with more ‘isolated’ events starting to form connections located in remote regions
- Local Market Force – It appears in your market – and boom, suddenly with the speed of Web 2.0 it becomes a recognisable market force
- Mass Market – It reaches mass market – where it has not only the inertia to continue under its own energy, but also leaves behind a latent footprint impacting other market factors
- Shadow Force – It becomes a shadow – it has moved from a driving market force into a market that lingers to the sidelines of a new change
If you are not watching over the horizon, and monitoring any new forces that transform from being isolated events into trends, then yes, the change will appear to happen rapidly. What has changed more than the so called ‘speed of change’ is the complexity of change. In many cases, it is the complexity that allows change to be hidden in plain sight.