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Business Change Management

Business Change Management

Andrea Simon

Andrea (Andi) Simon, Ph.D., principal and founder of Simon Associates Management Consultants (SAMC), has over 20 years’ experience as a sr. executive in the financial services and healthcare industries. A Blue Ocean Strategy® practitioner and trained in Innovation Games®, Andi brings the unique perspective of anthropology to businesses and organizations that need to “see, feel and think” in new ways.
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Recent Posts

What Is Futurism And Do You Need It?

On Nov 29, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Andrea Simon, future trends, futurism

When we think about today's most celebrated business leaders, usually Steve Jobs, Jeff Bezos or Elon Musk come to mind. They are often portrayed as prophets, and with good reason. Once asked about his strategy, Steve Jobs said it was first to change his company, then to change the industry, and finally, to change the world. These highly accomplished visionaries are not only able to “see” the future but also create it.   

Possessing highly speculative mindsets, futurists like these chart their companies' strategies over the long term, with foresight that spans decades, not years. This type of outlook allows them to create products and services that fit into their long-term vision, kickstarting a self-fulfilling prophecy of sorts. As they repeatedly tell the story of this vision, their customers' brains get accustomed to the leaders' futuristic ideas, further accelerating and ensuring their vision's success.

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Is Everyone Winning But You? Time For A Blue Ocean Strategy®!

On Oct 23, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Andrea Simon, Blue Ocean Strategy, Blue Ocean Strategy Expert, culture change expert

At SAMC, we are rather passionate about the power of Blue Ocean Strategic thinking. In fact, I recently spoke to the Pennsylvania Petroleum Association on Blue Ocean Strategy, and I was reminded how the theory, methods and tools of this unique business growth approach are so timely for an industry like this. On the one hand, consumers expect vendors to provide them with the services they need when they need them, not when vendors can deliver their home fuel or when fuel trucks can re-fill gas station tanks. On the other hand, the petroleum industry has collapsed over the past decade, shrinking from 12,000 distributors to less than 4,000. Clearly, this consolidation reflects the changing nature of the fuel delivery industry.

But it also reflects the trends that are coming next. WaWa is a perfect example: a gas station with high quality food that also sells gasoline. This dual-service model has enabled WaWa to outsell 7-Eleven stores and even McDonald's. Its secret? WaWa realized that people want quality food fast, but don't necessarily need a drive-up or a place to sit down to eat. By redesigning their operations, WaWa's leadership found their Blue Ocean Strategy and out-performed the rest of the pack, which were still competing over having the best gas prices in the right locations.

What the oil and gas industry is discovering: cars are going to be electric or hybrids, now or soon

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Blink And The Future Is Here. Are You Ready?

On Oct 16, 2019 8:49:54 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Andrea Simon, innovation, future trends

Our weekly podcast, On The Brink, was recently ranked among the top 10 futurist podcasts by TAFFD, an organization focused on "providing a transdisciplinary awareness about the future." This made us wonder, what is futurism? What are we doing at SAMC to share with others what’s coming next? And, how do people actually understand the future?

Deciding to delve into this topic further, like many of you we Googled "What is a futurist?" Here's what we found, from futurist.com: "A futurist is someone who studies and researches probabilities for the future empirically or scientifically."

A futurist is also defined as someone who:

  1. Forecasts the future, using quantitative and qualitative means
  2. Imagines the future, using primarily intuition and writing skills
  3. Creates the future, using techniques of planning and consulting

Wow! That's exactly what we do at Simon Associates for our clients: help them accept, prepare for and adapt to change. In other words, see what's coming and get ready for it now, rather than wait for a crisis to hit and be left scrambling. Who knew we were futurists!

We'd like the share the stories of 3 others we've interviewed who are obsessed with the future, see it coming and are excited about what’s next

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Has Your Company Stalled? Anthropology Can Help You Get Unstuck.

On Sep 26, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Andrea Simon, Business Anthropology, corporate anthropologist, anthropology

I recently had the very great pleasure to be interviewed by Shannon LaNier on the Morning Dose for CW39 Houston. He wanted to know all about my book, "On the Brink: A Fresh Lens to Take Your Business to New Heights," what an anthropologist does, how Simon Associates Management Consultants helps companies off the brink so they can soar, how to help an individual or an entire company change...all the things I love talking about. Truly delightful.

Here's a quick synopsis of what we discussed:

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What Time Is It? Time To Change

On Aug 15, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Andrea Simon, Culture Change, Managing change, business change management

Maybe it is time to change “Change Management”

In today's highly competitive, technologically disrupted business environment, one thing that’s a constant across all industries is change. It cannot be ignored—it must be embraced. But how? How do you change when our brains hate it? And, while change is all around us, few of us really know how to change, i.e., how to adopt new ways of doing things. We're much more comfortable with the way we've always done things in the past. So why change?

Because we must. The times demand it. Even though change is pain, we really need to learn the methods and strategies for bringing about real, transformative change, and then apply them. And fast.

Is meaningful and lasting change possible?

Yes. But, it takes genuine buy-in from the executive leadership and a strong understanding of the current vs. desired corporate culture. If these fall into place, culture change can indeed not only happen but revolutionize a company.

To understand how you too can do this, read our white paper which contains a step-by-step slide show explaining the necessary steps an organization must take to bring about real change. In this way, you and your business can overcome today's challenges and boldly embrace the future.

To download our white paper, "Everything is Changing but Change Management. Why Is It Not Working?," click below.

Download Change Management White Paper

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Your Data Is Talking To You. Are You Listening?

On Aug 13, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Corporate Anthropology, data analysis, healthcare organizations and data, data as storytelling

More importantly, can you understand what it's saying? 

These days, more and more (and more) data keeps coming at us, and if you're like me, you're wondering what to do with all. Can it help you run your business better? Can it reveal important facts about your customers? Can it identify nonusers of your products or services and show you how to convert them into users?

For those in management and strategic planning in healthcare systems, can data help guide CEOs' decisions? Can it help hospitals respond more quickly to market and cultural shifts taking place all around them? These are all important questions.

To have meaning, data has to be visualized

As I write in my recent article in Healthcare Marketing Report, perhaps the true value of data lies not in the data itself but in how people visualize it. The challenge is our own brains, which tend to sort through incoming data and only capture those data points that affirm what we already know or believe to be true. The rest we simply discount or ignore.

I assert that to really understand the meaning of data, we need to take it and turn it into a story that helps people act upon it and share it, thereby influencing and leading others. (You can read my entire HMR article by clicking here.)

How to hear what your data is saying and turn it into the right story

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How's Your Culture? Doing Fine Or In Drastic Need Of An Overhaul?

On Aug 8, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: business change management, culture, business culture

What is culture anyhow?

In the very simplest definition, culture is the way people think, act and behave. For us to interact with others, we need to share common values, stories, beliefs and ways of doing things. We cannot live without culture. It's the essence of who we are as humans.

Successful firms have intentionally built cultures. If a company is aggressive and competitive, and its employees always want to win, it will build a culture around those values. On the other hand, if a company is entrepreneurial and likes innovation, teamwork and visionary ideas, it will build a culture around those things. 

Culture also creates a collective identity and a commitment to that identity. It becomes a company's brand. And if you have a good strong brand, you want to make sure you're living it, living the culture. 

Wondering what your culture is? Perhaps this presentation can help.

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Like Helen Keller, You Too Can Triumph Over Your Obstacles And See With A Fresh Lens

On Jun 11, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: women in business, anthropology, women entrepreneurs

 

I have been researching my next book about successful women entrepreneurs and female business leaders. As I have dug into the lives of these women whom I've interviewed, I've realized that there have been countless women over the years who have pushed the boundaries for the times they were living in and broken through to achieve lasting impact.

Each month, I will share with you some of my “aha” moments when I learn about one of these amazing women. Their stories have led me to acknowledge and be grateful for their remarkable lives. Perhaps we should remember them more often. Celebrate their triumphs. Let them remind us of what we must do to continue opening doors to the future for our daughters and granddaughters, regardless of the hurdles we have to vault or the challenges we must confront—and there are certainly an abundance of those all around us.

For June, I wanted to share Helen Keller’s story with you.

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Is Your Crisis Coming? Anthropology Can Help You Change To Avoid It.

On May 16, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Business Anthropology, corporate anthropologist, anthropology


In March of this year, 2019, I made a presentation to the Society for Applied Anthropology entitled "Anthropology Applications for Business." It was a fantastic experience and gave me the opportunity to talk about my two favorite topics—anthropology and business—and share how we at SAMC apply anthropology to our corporate, business, healthcare and non-profit clients. 

I'll summarize the key points here but you can watch and listen to the presentation in its entirety by clicking on the image below.

Change creates pain in the brain

Companies come to us when they are in a crisis or see one coming. In fact, we've built our business around helping stalled organizations change. As we know from the neurosciences, our brains hate change, they fight it. That's why at SAMC, we've developed an anthropological approach which enables us to evaluate how organizations operate today (obstinate brains and all) so we can better help them change for the future. 

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Ready To Seize Opportunities You've Been Missing?

On Apr 9, 2019 6:00:00 AM

/ Andrea Simon

Categories: Business Anthropology, corporate anthropologist, anthropology

As many of you know, two things I love talking about are change and anthropology, so it was great fun to be interviewed by Acquisition International recently because I got to talk about both! (You can read the article here.)

The interview focused on how anthropology, when applied to business, can successfully drive change and spur growth by showing organizations how to "see, feel and think" with fresh eyes. By using the tools and methods of observational anthropology, companies are suddenly able to "see" opportunities they may have missed, the proverbial acres of diamonds that are all around them, waiting to be seized upon.

What about you? Are you missing opportunities right in front of you?

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