One of the greatest benefits of understanding flow is managing change. Like it or not, change is nonstop and can seem very scary. Things you thought were “set” are no longer there, or have altered dramatically.
Take cotton. In America, most people associate cotton with the deep south, and an industry that goes back to slave times. Well, even that’s changed, and in a very strange way. It seems an Australian company (yes, a totally different country), developed a high quality, long-staple cotton called FiberMax. While FiberMax is a great invention, it doesn’t like the deep south weather that much. It works best in the south-west. Result? Half of America’s cotton crop now comes from . . . drum roll please . . . Texas! This has radically changed the cotton industry as many of the traditional ways of doing things literally no longer apply. Keep in mind we’re talking centuries of cotton production suddenly being upended.
The same holds true for American car production. For the first time in its 102 years in business, General Motors sold more cars in a single foreign country than in America. What’s even more bizarre, from an historic perspective, is that that country is communist China. So here is this big traditional American company that is clearly going to focus its efforts on a communist country as American car sales aren’t going to significantly rebound for years.
Both examples, cotton and GM, again prove that the world constantly changes and the only way to find success is with flow. Flow enables you to manage and triumph no matter how bizarre things seem to get.