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essentials | Chapter 1

About Shift Thinking®

By Mark Bonchek and Causeit, Inc.

About Shift Thinking

Shift Thinking® is a set of exponential mindshifts for success in the Digital Age.

Embraced by a growing community of leaders and organizations, this transformational way of thinking about business reflects the new logic of value creation in a networked world.

To achieve breakthrough results, you can't just change what you do. First you must change how you think.

“We cannot solve our problems with the same thinking we used when we created them.”
— Albert Einstein

Why Shift Thinking?

In transformational times, we need to change how we think.

Complexity is overwhelming. The pace of change has become exponential.

Leaders face multiple challenges at once. Consumer expectations are changing. Industries are being disrupted. Organizations are having to reinvent themselves.

Everyone is asking themselves: What should we do?

We think there's a better question:

How should we think?

What is Shift Thinking®?

To change what you do, you first have to change how you think.

They say that people resist change.  But that’s not always true.

Imagine you are hanging from a trapeze. The rope is fraying and there is no net below. People are telling you to jump. But until someone brings a new bar within reach, you’ll hang on as long as you can. You aren’t resisting— you’re just being smart. When you can reach that new bar, you gladly let go of the old.

Today, we are all swinging on a digital trapeze.  The old ways are becoming obsolete.  The rope is fraying and we all have to jump. But where’s the new bar?

Shift Thinking is a new mindset for success in the Digital Age.

This work accelerates not only learning, but unlearning. It helps leaders let go of the old and grab onto the new, with new mental models that leverage the power of network effects to transform how companies engage, organize and grow.

People ask how Shift Thinking differs from other methodologies such as design thinking, Agile or growth mindset.

While each of these pertains to a specific aspect of business, Shift Thinking is an overarching mindset about value creation that ties together strategy, marketing, leadership and culture.

If you are ready to make the leap to achieve breakthrough results, Shift Thinking is the new bar you’ve been waiting for.

Mindshifts for success

We've spent 20 years looking at companies that are succeeding in the Digital Age to understand not only what they do, but how they think.

We looked beyond best practices to identify mental models that others can use to survive and thrive.

We found a characteristic pattern—a set of mindshifts. The most successful organizations have shifted their thinking in these ways.

  • The mental model of change shifts from incremental to exponential.
  • For leadership, the shift is from control to empowerment.
  • Organizations are shifting from hierarchy to network.
  • And the role of people shifts from co-creators to consumers.

Shift Thinking multipliers

New mental models for exponential success in the Digital Age.

With Shift Thinking, product-focused, process-intensive, hierarchical organizations can become agile, adaptive networks aligned on Shared Purpose.

Multipliers are new mental models that enable exponential transformation by tapping into the power of network effects.

  • Mobilize around Shared Purpose
  • Inspire co-creation by designing a powerful Narrative
  • Build customer ORBIT: Ongoing Relationships
    Beyond Individual Transactions
  • Use Doctrine to empower aligned decision-making
  • Leverage Platform thinking to unleash network effects

Are you a Shift Thinker?

Shift Thinkers are a community of transformational leaders.

Shift Thinkers are leaders who can let go of existing ways of thinking to embrace new ones. With practice, Shift Thinkers can also catalyze new ways of thinking for others.

Traits of Shift Thinkers

  • You like to explore new ideas and new ways of thinking
  • You enjoy having epiphanies
  • Others often look to you for inspiration and thought partnership
  • You enjoy thinking about future possibilities