Boiling the Frog

One of my favorite anecdotes on working with change was always the "How do you Boil a Frog" example.  The theory goes that if you throw a frog into a boiling pot it will jump out, but if you put it in a cold pot and then heat it up it will fall asleep and then boil.  Meant to be an analogy to implementing change slowly.

But sadly, according to Karl (one of our advisory board members) this is not true.  The frog jumps out either way.  Oh well, too bad.  I guess that leaves us with the Drip method.  To be discussed in a later Harvey Sayings post.

  1. mip Reply

    Yes…but as you’ve often said, we often have to do what is best for the client….putting a “lid” on it is sometimes beneficial. What I would suggest is to paint the inside of that lid like the sky…then you can’t tell the difference until you bump your head.

  2. Stephen Reply

    Karl sent me a note this morning pointing me to this article.
    A great view on the anecdote showing the challenges of not moving too fast or also moving too slow with a bit of scientific opinion thrown in. I can not vouch for the scientific opinion, but the guy uses some big words.

  3. Stephen Reply

    MIP, not sure there are many clients who would want a lid put on them

  4. Jim Reply

    The story may be a myth but the parable is very, very important. I have said for at least ten years, I wonder if GM can jump out of the pot. I think they are pretty much parboiled. Interesting to know whether IBM has been able to jump out of the pot. Opinions?
    One of my clients with whom I had worked for a long period gave me a frog ornament when the project was wrapping up as a symbol. I figure the metaphor really resonated with them. They certainly jump out of the pot. It was a long hard road.

  5. mip Reply

    My approach would be to put a lid on the pot.

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