Neil and Johnnie have great posts on the negative role that conformity can have on our attempts to engineer organisational change and innovation.
While what they say is fair enough, it strikes me that we are perhaps rushing a bit quickly to see the negative side of copying and social learning…(as we too often do). It's not just that it comes with fancy hats (see pic above) and all that that means.
Are we not assuming here that only through deep volitional intention can change come about? And that anything that lies in the way of change is a bad thing…
another mechanism that leads to what we know of as "innovation" & which
is actually a lot more common than intentional innovation: "random
drift" – i.e. conformity gone wrong (inaccurate copying over many iterations).
Maybe it's another version of our attempts to "force change" – to "drive", "lead" or "create" change