Understanding Change

1132549892I read a fascinating article recently about change, The Media World, Brands Are Changing For Good The question it addresses is how change can sometimes happen seemingly rapidly. In reality, rapid change is merely a bi-product of ongoing slowly shifting values which are then ignited by a flash point event.

In our more recent cases, the flash point events were COVID-19, George Floyd’s death causing the social uprising that has occurred.

So now we are starting to realize that social injustice occurs systemically (which has always been the case), and we how we merely were inoculated to its existence, but now the inoculation has worn off.

Should we re-think the role of police and find solutions rather than unfair treatment, even death, and overall increased incarcerations? Of course, we should.

Should we worship the Confederacy and all that it represented? No.

Should be Redskins change their name? Of course, they should. Now they will have to.

And change will happen

Change is slow to come by, but then it happens seemingly quickly. Here’s that interesting article below:

“Change is the only constant in life.”

These words were first spoken by Heraclitus of Ephesus.  He was an ancient Greek philosopher with a relatively morbid outlook on life.

I am a born optimist, so I never took this statement or any of the endless paraphrases and restatements to be anything other than positive.  To me, change is a good thing.  It symbolizes evolution and is indicative of the fact that humans are fallible, we know it, and we’re capable of striving to improve.

There is a LOT of change going on right now in the media world, so that must mean there are a lot of good things happening, even in the face of COVID-19.

The media is finally becoming a force for change rather than the voice of the bully pulpit it had become in recent years.  The media had become polarizing, only catering to the voices of the far right and far left, but in recent weeks I have sensed a change that demonstrates a dissatisfaction with that tone and tenor.

The media is supposed to be a conduit for information, and is now working to convince people to be responsible and wear masks in public to stem the spread of COVID-19.

The Washington Redskins are looking to change their name.  The Cleveland Indians are expressing an interest in doing the same.  Statues are falling, and people are asking questions, forcing themselves to have difficult conversations.  Advertisers are boycotting platforms that refuse to take on responsibility for the content and conversations held within them.

Large brands are forcing change by amplifying the voices of their customers.

This is a unique moment in time because brands are becoming more than a voice for profit.  They are becoming a megaphone for their customers.  More importantly, people are listening.

In the ’60s, the voices that carried were those of specific leaders.  In today’s world we are experiencing a lack of leadership, and brands are being tasked to step up and help amplify the voices that do exist.

I’ve listened to artists play music online and try to rally the spirits of the people sheltering in place. I’ve watched members of the sports community try to come up with a plan to engage the world during the pandemic and provide a welcome distraction.

The last 10 years have witnessed the rise of the “purpose-driven” brand, and now that purpose is tangible.  Will that purpose be realized in the next year or two?

It does feel as though brands are having their moment.  The pressure being exhibited on the Washington Redskins is palpable and does seem to be driving towards a true outcome of change.  Team owner Daniel Snyder may have once said, “NEVER — you can use caps,” but it would appear NEVER happens in 2020.  If anything, this is most certainly the year when anything “that will NEVER happen” does happen.

Can you only imagine what an ancient Greek philosopher would have to say about the world we are seeing unfurl before our very eyes today?  That quote resonates even more today than when it was last paraphrased by a well-intentioned public figure.

Change happens slowly….until ignited.

More Strumings

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