Now-to-new signifies a shift from the present situation to what is needed instead, such that value is generated, or anti-value generation is halted, or value generation capability is expanded, or it is restored.

The six main types of now-to-new work are problem solving, surmounting, creating (previously labelled innovation), changing, developing, and utilising. These categories are neither mutually exclusive nor collectively exhaustive.

The six main types of now-to-new work: problem solving, surmounting, creating, developing, changing and utilising. Originated by Jack Martin Leith.
Read more about the six main types of now-to-new work

The now-to-new concept, principles and practices are the product of a lifelong enquiry into how the new comes into being and how this changes into that, coupled with a 30-year consulting career in the fields of complex problem solving, breakthrough innovation and whole system change.

Now-to-new articles, slideshows, downloadable materials, video and glossary

Items in the left-hand column shown in red are articles located elsewhere on this website.

“70% of organisational change initiatives fail” — Fact or fiction?A detailed timeline showing how the widely-quoted 70% change failure rate was first seen in 1993, in Michael Hammer and James Champy’s book Reengineering the Corporation, and how it became received wisdom — largely due to the efforts of John Kotter and McKinsey & Company.
Creating collaborative gatherings using large group interventionsChapter 28 of the Gower Handbook of Training and Development,
Third Edition, 1999. Download pdf document (10pp)
Creating greatness in the realm beyond systems thinkingIn this article, I present 14 propositions about creating the new and changing this into that. The article formed part of an e-book distributed to participants in European Sharing on Systems Thinking, held in Prague, June 2015.
Creating greatness in the realm beyond systems thinking (pdf document; 22pp)
Creative imaginationProposition: Truly original ideas having the potential to enrich the world come to us by means of creative imagination, and not through synthetic imagination, which produces derivative ideas and mediocrity.
Creative power: degenerative and generative manifestationsWhen someone deploys their creative power in a solo or group setting, it can manifest either in a degenerative form or a generative form, depending on their state of consciousness. In this article I try to explain what I mean by the terms degenerative and generative, and attempt to bring the terms to life by means of examples drawn from a variety of sources including Erik Erikson, Napoleon Hill and Otto Scharmer.
Designing innovation and change work to create maximum ecosystem value: the why and the howA Gurteen-style Knowledge Café I designed and facilitated, forming part of European Sharing on Systems Thinking, held in Prague, Czech Republic, June 2015. pdf document | PowerPoint file (53 slides; editable)
Enriching the world: Is it good business practice? (video)This is the title of the five-minute talk I gave at Ignite Bristol (motto: Enlighten us, but make it quick) some years ago. The 20 slides accompanying the talk auto-advance every 15 seconds. I just about managed to keep up with them.
Watch the video of Jack's five-minute Ignite talk »
The fallacy of ‘change is a journey’The most widely used metaphor of change is that of a journey from the current state of affairs (a.k.a. As-is) to the desired state (a.k.a. To-be). The desired state is seen as a place out there in the future. But change is not a journey from here to there. There is no here, no there, and no journey. This is simply a metaphor, an inaccurate and potentially dangerous one.
The fallacy of employee engagementTrying to engage a person is like trying to dance them. It cannot be done.
The fallacy of resistance to changePeople are not “resisting change”. They are expressing their displeasure that the change initiative or innovation endeavour is designed in such a way that it generates anti‑value for them.
How can we animate our strategy and manifest our intent?It seems to me that in many enterprises the link from purpose (what I now call intent) to strategy, and from strategy to action, is tenuous at best. How can these connections be strengthened? The answer, I suggest, is by means of a mission: an enterprise-wide programme of work in which everyone from the CEO to the most junior employee participates.
How can co-creation meeting formats be modified in order to honour the max4 principle?In this article I suggest how the formats of type 1 (pre-designed and facilitator-led, such as Future Search) and type 2 (Open Space) co-creation meetings can be modified in order to honour the max4 principle.
How the now-to-new concept came into beingThe initial inspiration for the now-to-new concept was the TOTE (Test—Operate—Test—Exit) model introduced by George Miller, Eugene Galanter and Karl Pribram in 1960.
Knowledge CaféKnowledge Café (a.k.a. Gurteen Knowledge Café) is the format for a meeting of around 32 people that enables rich and rewarding conversation on a topic of mutual interest. Knowledge Café participants immerse themselves in the topic, share knowledge, hatch ideas, gain insights, acquire new perspectives, strengthen relationships, and form new connections. The originator of the format is David Gurteen, an influential practitioner in the areas of knowledge management and conversational leadership.
The max4 principle: four people maximum for a proper conversationThe max4 principle is revealed in four studies summarised in this article. It has profound implications for those who design and facilitate workshops, unconferences, Open Space meetings and large-scale gatherings.
Now-to-new glossaryI use certain terms in a particular way, and sometimes it’s necessary to invent new terms when existing ones are inadequate. The aim of this glossary is to make my intended meanings clear.
Organizing work, creating value: the story so farA set of 60 slides illustrating the 150-year history of management theory and practice. The slides accompanied my talk that formed part of Organizing Without Managers: exploring new forms of organization, a workshop held at Ashridge Business School (now Hult International Business School), July 2016.
pdf document | PowerPoint file (60 slides; editable)
Problem transformationProblem transformation is a way of perceiving and responding to tough challenges such that ambitious outcomes are achieved, widespread value is generated, and the value creation capability of the individual or collective is increased.
Readiness workReadiness work enables members of a now-to-new project team to prime themselves for the showing up of a high potential concept by becoming immersed in the demands and dynamics of the project and having a felt sense of the new reality in which the desired results will arise.
Rich Co-creationRich Co-creation is a set of principles and practices employed in projects where stakeholders work together on an equal footing, from start to finish, in order to bring forth a mutually beneficial result. This could mean eliminating a tough problem, bringing about a desired change, creating something new, expanding value generation capability, or utilising value generation capability more fully. The ‘rich’ prefix indicates that this approach to co-creation is full-bodied and directed towards the generation of significant downstream value.
Rich Co-creation principlesThe principles are arranged in three groups: principles relating to the enterprise as a whole, principles relating to the projects the enterprise undertakes as it seeks to accomplish its mission, and principles relating to small and large scale meetings convened in order to plan, design and expedite co‑creation projects.
The six main types of now-to-new workThe six main types of now-to-new work are problem solving, surmounting, creating, changing, developing, and utilising.
Specifying the value to be generated by a now-to-new projectA tool to help you specify the value you intend your now-to-new project to generate for each beneficiary group.
The story of the Organization Transformation symposiaThis was written by John D. Adams during the Sixth International Symposium on Organization Transformation (OT6), held in Djurö, Stockholm archipelago, Sweden, August 1988. He reveals the origins of the OT conference series and recounts how Harrison Owen came to devise Open Space as the conference method for OT3 in 1985.
The complete list of Organization Transformation symposia, 1983 – 2005
The Tell–Sell–Test–Consult–Co-create conceptA manager or leader has five main ways of getting something done: telling, selling, testing, consulting, and co-creating. The five ways were first articulated by Bryan A, Smith in The Fifth Discipline Fieldbook, clearly inspired by the work of Robert Tannenbaum and Walter Schmidt. I have elaborated Bryan Smith’s concept a little.
The three main co-creation meeting formatsType 1 meetings are pre-designed and facilitator-led. Type 2 meetings (e.g. Open Space) are spontaneous and self-facilitated. Type 3 meetings (e.g. OpenSpacePlus) combine types 1 and 2.
Unconditional serviceUnconditional service is selfless action taken by an individual or group on behalf of others, motivated by a heartfelt desire to enrich the world. When we give unconditional service, we work for the benefit of others without wanting anything in return.
Value: the red threadValue is the red thread that unites intent (formerly referred to as a purpose/vision composite) strategy, mission, project work, capability expansion, and other business fundamentals. In this article I talk about the three main types of value, the means by which value is generated, and the concept of anti-value. The article makes reference to jobs-to-be-done theory and the value proposition canvas.
Why is now-to-new a beneficial way of thinking, talking and working?Summary:
1. The essence of now-to-new is seeking to create that which generates abundant value for others.
2. Now-to-new indicates a reality change.
3. Now-to-new is a useful collective noun.
4. Now-to-new gives people a shared language.
5. The six types of now-to-new work are named using verbs rather than nouns, because nouns signify abstract concepts and verbs signify real-world action.
6. One type of now-to-new work is labelled creating, as this is a more inclusive term than innovating. For example, I created this web page, but no one would describe it as an innovation.
7. Now-to-new enables the right intervention or programme of work to be designed.
8. Now-to-new provides principles and practices for creating alone,
creating together (notably Rich Co-creation), and helping others create.
9. Now-to-new is holistic, responsive, interactional and recursive.
10. Now-to-new makes a clear distinction between developing and utilising.
Woodrow Wilson’s “You are here to enrich the world” address in fullThe full transcript of the address given by Woodrow Wilson, 28th President of the United States, at Swarthmore College, Swarthmore, Philadelphia, USA on 25 October 1913.

From Now to New right here: Change-as-flipping

BetaCodex Network White Paper No. 16, March 2019.
A set of 19 slides by Niels Pfleaging and Silke Hermann.

My thanks go to Niels and Silke for their acknowledgement on slide 16.