The Evolution of Species… and Organizations

Nature is of course a good teacher and a source of inspiration. Let’s just think of the objects that we often design according to ergonomics principles coming from the characteristics of living beings, either plants or animals: from claws for an effective grip, wings to fly, communication systems using waves and sounds, up to the ability to understand physical principles by observing situations that occur “naturally” before our eyes.
In recent times we are experiencing important developments that see the reorganization not only of our companies, but of entire business models and consequently of all the subjects that work within these businesses, including of course trade associations. The awareness that organizations in general are somehow “living” entities created by men leads us to consider an analogy between the evolutionary aspects that characterize living beings and organizations themselves. Biology, in fact, teaches that change is “the normal condition of living organisms” and that for a living being the only condition that does not contemplate change is death. Ironically, stability seems not to be a “normal” condition. Often within modern organizations we see this perspective reversed, resulting in the concept of resistance to change. The willing to keep the status quo mostly comes from the fear of altering conditions that appear positive, immutable over time and therefore without risk. However, this hypothesis may represent the greatest danger, because it prevents people from carrying out a thorough analysis of the whole scenario. Stability does not mean the absence of changes, but the management and control of the evolution that becomes necessary due to a change in the conditions of the external environment and therefore, in the case of companies or associations, changes in markets and technologies. These thoughts are related to the decisive moment that we are living as ASSOFLUID, meaning a substantial evolution of the association structure, first of all with the consolidation of the partnership with ASSIOT. A choice dictated by the new paradigm that sees the development of cross issues between the sectors of fluid power and power transmission, with the need to expand the area of interest in terms of both technology (for instance, issues related to electronics and the so-called enabling technologies must be necessarily faced) and supply chain, as the upstream and downstream interactions are increasingly relevant. To sum up, a change that comes from the desire to provide member companies with an increasingly effective representation and, at the same time, from the need to increase efficiency, in quite a “natural” evolutionary process.