BLENDIFICATION IN THE News

PUBLISHED ARTICLES AND BOOK REVIEWS

As COVID-19 began to impact the world, most businesses reacted swiftly and transitioned from a growth economy to severely depressed consumer demand. As the outbreak took hold, leadership capacity was stretched, and business focus began to go through phases. While the timing of the phases varied from organization to organization, the progression was similar. One “ah ha” emerging from the COVID-19 reaction is that businesses need a more efficient and effective cultural, strategic, and execution model to quickly adapt to rapid, unforeseen changes in external impacts to their business. Given the likelihood of additional unforeseen shocks, what will you do to build a strong and agile organizational core?

As COVID-19 began to move throughout the US, organizations reacted quickly to enable employees to “work from home.” For many leaders, this was a shock and they struggled to effectively adapt their organization to a blended world. The myth of work/life balance was prevalent in many companies as they failed to recognize the trends pointing to increased integration of work and life. The concept of work/life balance, or the separation between work and life, was dealt a huge blow with the outbreak of COVID-19. The novel coronavirus forced leaders of hierarchical, on-site, 9-5 businesses to acknowledge what should have been blatantly obvious: work and home life can no longer be looked at as being balanced but should be viewed as blended.


Capitalism has gotten a bad rap, bearing the blame for corporate greed and income inequality. However, no other market system has the ability to create opportunities and benefit society. The real culprit is how capitalism has been corrupted, associated with crushing competitors and world dominance. Learn how business leaders can move away from competitive advantage and instead pursue their calling as capitalists — and realize their organizational and human potential.

Blank Swan events such as the COVID-19 pandemic force leaders to step back and then step up. As the crisis swept the globe, skilled leaders evaluated the situation and were able to recognize the system-based impact of their focus, behaviors, and actions. They were able to turn anxiety into opportunities and focus on outcomes rather than obstacles.

If your life isn’t integrated, then it is segregated. If your business isn’t integrated, it is segregated. The concept of Blendification® rests on the foundation that you cannot reach your human potential without intentionally helping others pursue their potential. Further, a business cannot realize its potential without being completely integrated, or blended, with everyone working together towards something meaningful.

The world is getting smaller. In 1966, Walt Disney unveiled “It’s a Small World,” a now classic ride, and the phrase has been used ever since to highlight how the world keeps getting closer together. Even before this, the idea of “six degrees of separation” surfaced in 1929 and was popularized by a film by the same name in 1993. That was before the internet! The internet, though, with chat rooms, email, and social media, is making the world even smaller at an exponential rate.  Additionally, in 2016, Facebook said that the average separation between friendship links decreased to 4.47 instead of the popular six degrees of separation.

Why have vision statements fallen out of focus? The key reason: they typically do not connect to what drives and motivates employees. Today’s younger workforce does not trust the traditional vision statement where focus is placed on industry or world dominance.

The ability to align organizational, department, and team focus on something larger than myself is one of the most essential and impactful leadership tools available. However, there is a significant cost if a leader is not equipped with the ability to align focus and actions around a cause.

Has COVID-19 accelerated and magnified the pre-existing inefficiencies in higher education? As a strong believer in the value of higher education, I can’t help but think that the effects of COVID-19 shined a light on the underlying issues that have existed in education for many years.

The world is getting smaller. In 1966, Walt Disney unveiled “It’s a Small World,” a now classic ride, and the phrase has been used ever since to highlight how the world keeps getting closer together. Even before this, the idea of “six degrees of separation” surfaced in 1929 and was popularized by a film by the same name in 1993. That was before the internet! The internet, though, with chat rooms, email, and social media, is making the world even smaller at an exponential rate.  Additionally, in 2016, Facebook said that the average separation between friendship links decreased to 4.47 instead of the popular six degrees of separation.

Business’ role and responsibility in society is greater than generating a profit or maximizing shareholder value. While these metrics are critical to success, the true impact of a company is more substantial than a simple numeric metric. Once people start full-time work, studies show, they spend more than 50% of their waking hours in work- or work-related activities. The workplace becomes the primary place where employees learn to work with others, overcome obstacles, achieve personal and team success, and develop emotional intelligence. However, few businesses embrace their role in positively impacting their employees, customers and communities.

Remember Occupy Wall Street? How about Arab Spring? Like many social movements, each of these dominated the news for an extended period but ultimately lost steam. There are 127 social movements listed on the Wikipedia page. Several of the movements are still active, and some I have never heard of. Yet, I was struck by how many movements were once major headlines and now have faded away.

Early in June, Dan Bruder published an exciting new book entitled, The Blendification System: Activating Potential by Connecting Culture, Strategy, and Execution. By focusing on the unifying purpose within each organization, this book promotes alignment between leadership and employees setting a clear, strong foundation in which every individual can thrive.

Inside of every person is a desire to achieve something meaningful in their life. This may not be evident in some people, most likely because someone in their life deactivated their motivation by either making it too easy or degrading them. The outcome is similar: a lack of motivation and confidence to complete tasks, projects, and jobs.

Dan Bruder’s The Blendification System: Achieving Potential by Connecting Culture, Strategy, and Execution is another text about producing effective business leadership but has wider resonance. The book is born from over three decades spent working as a teacher and executive, but Bruder’s personal experiences are key to the book’s success. He currently serves as CEO for Fusion Dynamics Group, a leadership firm and international strategy firm based out of Colorado and both his past and present alike place Bruder on the front lines of what makes effective leaders in a way many of his peers and contemporaries cannot match. Those ingredients make for a winning concoction in The Blendification System.

The Blendification System, to put it succinctly, relies on synergy. Bruder envisions the system integrating team forums, technology, and internal peer groups into a cohesive whole capable of strengthening a business overall. He further imagines that, having achieved the aforementioned synergy, it will exert a positive influence on anyone who encounters it – customers, families, and even the communities where they operate. He goes to great pains in this book to delineate the system for readers. “The Blendification System” extends over four parts and fourteen chapters covering topics such as execution, strategic focus, the system of business, and strategic analysis. It makes for a substantial book, over three hundred pages in length, but readers are fortunate.

Bruder opens his book stressing his thesis of Blendification as a strategic method of improving the potential of any organization.

Bruder goes on to explain that the Blendification System is a system that is generated to connect culture, strategy, and execution in organizations in order that they are functioning to their full capacity. He likens the system to creating a company’s own DNA through the people that work there, thus creating its own culture. He explains that in order to utilize this potential a purposeful strategy needs to be implemented. He details what strategies are and how they have been used throughout history and in today’s world.

Bruder offers an in-depth learning progression to explain where leaders come from, and how they are shaped. He discusses the building blocks of cultural connection and how a strong cultural transition will redirect the process of developing leaders. His reviews of case studies through these discussions help to place the processes of the Blendification System into the various company and business standards. By using and applying these case studies to various businesses, each business owner has the ability to reimagine their own leadership training programs to fit the new standards.

My name is Dan Bruder. I created the Blendification System after three decades of leadership roles in global companies and entrepreneurial organizations along with teaching in the Executive MBA and MBA programs at Colorado State University and the University of Colorado, Boulder. I believe that business is a microcosm of capitalism and the purpose of capitalism is to build a better society by solving customer and community problems. Unfortunately, businesses and universities have oversimplified with narrow-focused metrics – shareholder value, sales, and profit. I created the Blendification System and wrote the book so leaders have a process for developing more fulfilled employees and customers thereby building better communities. My personal fulfillment comes from helping others pursue and realize their potential and have dedicated my consulting practice to that endeavor.

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