What we can learn from caterpillars ans butterflies
IMAGINE A CATERPILLAR. The caterpillar thinks “I'm not really that happy with myself. Something has to be different!” She ponders what she does could change. Crawl along new routes? Restructure the day? Go to the caterpillar hairdresser and have the pattern on the skin repainted? The caterpillar implements one change after another. But she is not really satisfied. There’s still something pulling her in another direction... she does not know where it will lead. But the urge for a different life remains.
From the caterpillar to the butterfly
One day the caterpillar pupates into a cocoon. From the outside, nothing happens at all... stagnation? Not at all! Because after two to four weeks something wonderful happens: The cocoon breaks up. And where there once was a caterpillar, now there is a butterfly. Quietly, in the cocoon, a change has taken place something fundamental has been done. So fundamental that the caterpillar is almost unrecognisable. But she is still there - you just have to look carefully.
The digital butterfly
The same is true of the digital transformation that is taking place in many different areas of our lives. Digitisation initially began in silence. Since then, it has got loud and we are confronted with it, whether we like it or not. It is so loud that sometimes we do not even listen to ourselves. This is questionable because digitisation is all about recognising the caterpillar in the digital butterfly.
This means that we should focus on our work, our business model, our company, our customers - on the very core WHY, WHAT and HOW in our everyday working life. If we have clarity here, it's not just about optimising what already exists, but actually thinking of something new.
Pause instead of dawdling on
Well, the caterpillar shows us how to do it. Real change takes time and protected space. That's why the caterpillar builds its cocoon. It always looks the same from the outside. But inside, slowly but surely, something groundbreaking is happening.
My experience is that companies also need a cocoon like this. In the autopilot of the hustle and bustle of everyday life, nobody develops fundamental change. It’s more about finding niches where free thinking and real development become possible. Then real change can happen and the butterfly can stand out.
About Nicola Fritze
She is a speaker, coach and author.