Pandemic aftershocks, climate change, cultural polarization, supply-chain upheaval: “Managing change” in an ever-changing world is now the universal job description. And while leaders everywhere hope for the best, the wise course of action is to plan for the worst. There is a silver lining behind the gloom and doom, however. A much-maligned group that’s often seen as expendable actually holds the key to reimagining uncertainty as a catalyst for positive transformation—middle managers with the power to make a difference.

This is one of the core messages of Disruption Proof, the new book from Brant Cooper, a sought-after speaker, startup mentor, executive advisor, and New York Times bestselling author of The Lean Entrepreneur. He’s spent his career helping organizations shift from industrial-age thinking to the pursuit of new opportunities built around agile teams, human-centered design, and lean methodologies. His new book teaches businesses how to create long-term value and thrive in the 21st century.

As Brant tells me in this episode of The Groove podcast, change can only happen by discarding the old top-down mindset. “Fundamentally,” he says, “change happens from the grassroots, from the bottom layer up. There are things we need to do in order to decentralize our decision-making and empower the ‘edge’ [of organizations]. If they’re able to decentralize decision-making, suddenly leaders will find that they have more time to be strategic.”

Read the full article on Forbes.

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