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Love It or List It

HGTV (Home and Garden Television) has become the subject of both workplace and social gathering conversations wherever you go. The shows seem to appeal to a broad demographic that includes singles and couples, young and older, men and women, and people in all regions of the country.

Each series has a slightly different approach to finding the perfect home for the featured buyer(s). The Property Brothers help with the search for something to buy while updating the current residence to maximize the sales price. Fixer Upper involves just that – finding a property that will become a dream home with varying degrees of renovation. Flip or Flop features a couple who purchase houses that are clearly in need of repair and transform them into “models” that typically provide a sizeable sales profit.

Love It or List It tracks the search for a new home and the renovation of the existing property before allowing the buyers to ultimately choose between staying where they are or selling and moving.

While there’s clearly an entertainment factor to these shows, it occurred to me that the central theme is the re-design of living space. And this often includes some re-framing (literally and figuratively) of what someone has lived with for some time - and then almost suddenly senses that there’s something missing or the possibility of something better.

How much does this resemble our experiences in organizations? How often do we find that what we’ve been living with no longer meets our needs or desires? How much renovation and repair can we do on our own if things are in dire need of attention?

We suggest that re-designing organizations parallels key elements in these home shows, such as:

  • Open space that facilitates communication and information sharing;

  • Sensing and responding to unexpected and unplanned events rather than predicting and controlling;

  • Limiting unnecessary rules and bureaucracy that get in the way of creativity.

All of these environmental elements can be designed and implemented by individuals and teams who want to create a culture that encourages innovation and agility, which are essential for personal and organizational success.

Take some time this month to find one thing that you can do to make your organization one that you and your co-workers want to be a part of. Be prepared for some “expense” in terms of time, effort, and commitment. Know that you may need some advisors to guide you in this process if you have become less aware of what’s not working. And remember that you have choice in creating something that you will enjoy or deciding that it’s time to move on to a different neighborhood or dwelling.

Will you Love It or List It? That decision is yours.


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