God’s word encourages planning. Consider “Plans fail for lack of counsel” (Proverbs 15:22) and “In his heart a man plans his course” (Proverbs 16:9). Yet two things that are equally true are that change is all around us and ultimately God is in control. Because of the lack of control most of us have over our future and the plans we make today are likely to be interrupted tomorrow when something changes, many leaders fail to plan. In times of economic uncertainty or rapid change, for example, leaders are tempted to forgo the planning process until things “slow down” or “calm down”. That, however, can prove to be a fatal blow to an organization’s future.
The age of discovery and information, the industrial revolution and technological improvements all helped to usher the world into the rapid change and instant everything mindset. A natural reaction to that paradigm shift over time is for many leaders and organizations to “wait and see” what happens, because no one can as easily predict where we will go next as a society and culture. The truth, however, is that if change is constant and we are encouraged to plan, then somehow those two worlds must collide. We must learn to plan for our organization’s future in the midst of rapid change. This process may be one of the greatest challenges for leaders of this century and culture.
The wise person will always plan for change and through change. The leader’s role needs to be one of keeping the organization true to the overall mission and vision of the organization while at the same time always being aware of changes on the horizon which could enhance or threaten the organization’s success in the future and, in the end, steering the organization through those changes. Plans today must be much more adaptable and flexible to change and more inclusive of others and their opinions if they will succeed; but plans must be made that serve to move the organization forward.
The world is constantly changing and God does hold the conclusion to a matter, but the “wise man builds a house” carefully, through planning, hard work, and by adapting to the changing culture and environment. Don’t quit planning during times of uncertainty or rapid change!