Business buzzwords are often so overused, they start to lose their meaning. I mean, if we could just actualize and find best of breed and backward compatible solutions that are bleeding edge, it would enable us to drill down, fast-track, ideate and create mindshare that would help us peel the onion, push the envelope and go beyond the tip of the iceberg. Know what I mean?
I feel this way about “best practices”.
Best practices are really about “past practices”. For some reason, we look at the past, examine it and then determine what may work for the future. For those of us who have worked inside large companies, we hear “let’s benchmark best practices of our top competitors”. The only problem is that we generally find practices that are fairly similar, which is why most best practice exercises lead to very little change.
Let’s admit it. Best practices are yesterday’s buzzword and they are less helpful than first thought.
Next practices are what we want. We want to understand where a market is going and identify what our customers are thinking so that we can innovate in the future.
Leaders surprise the market.
Leaders have the courage to innovate slightly ahead of the curve.
Leaders realize it is lonely at the top.
Leaders create next practices. Best practices are for the middle of the pack. For those who wish to be like their competitors and not stand out.
When this comes up again in conversation at your company, ask how you can develop next practices. See where it takes you.
All the best, Bob