About the Author: Brian Hernandez

Founder and Chief Storyteller | Phalanx Outreach Solutions

In the everyday world of workforce development, the landscape is constantly evolving. What worked yesterday may not necessarily yield the same results tomorrow. As a workforce development organization committed to outreach innovation, it’s crucial to adapt and embrace new strategies that resonate with your audiences. This entails shifting our collective focus from a process-driven approach to one that is audience-driven, much like Dick Fosbury did with his revolutionary high jump technique at the 1968 Olympics.

Let’s take a trip back to Mexico City in 1968. The High Jump competition was dominated by athletes using the straddle technique, where the jumper would go over the bar facing down and headfirst. It was the established norm, the process everyone followed. Then came Dick Fosbury, a relatively unknown athlete with a radical idea. Instead of conforming to the traditional approach, Fosbury dared to innovate. He introduced the now-iconic “Fosbury Flop,” a technique where the jumper goes over the bar headfirst, but facing upward, arching their back and going over the bar backward.

Fosbury’s approach was met with skepticism and resistance initially, but his courage, calculation, and intention to forge his own path paid off. Not only did he win the gold medal, but he also changed the game forever. The Fosbury Flop became the new standard in high jumping, demonstrating the power of challenging conventions and embracing innovation.

Similarly, in workforce development, we often find ourselves trapped in processes and methodologies that may have become outdated. We rely heavily on program performance measurements, but these alone do not define our success. To truly make an impact and achieve our outreach goals, we must recalibrate our approach to focus on our audiences and customers.

By shifting our mindset to be more audience-driven, we can better understand the needs, aspirations, and challenges of the individuals we aim to serve. This allows us to tailor our outreach efforts more effectively, crafting messages and programs that resonate on a deeper level. Just as Fosbury redefined the high jump by prioritizing his own path to success, we too can create value by daring to innovate and forge new ways of engaging with our communities.

At Phalanx Outreach Solutions, we recognize the importance of embracing this paradigm shift. We understand that every workforce development organization has a unique story to tell, and we’re here to help you unlock the power of your narrative. Through our collaborative approach to storytelling, we empower you to connect with your audiences authentically and drive meaningful change.

So, let’s take a leap of faith together. Let’s embrace the spirit of Dick Fosbury and the Fosbury Flop, and chart a new course towards advocacy and results in workforce development outreach. It’s time to break free from the constraints of old paradigms and pave the way for a brighter future, one where innovation and intentionality guide our path to success.

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Phalanx Outreach Solutions Paradigm Shift Leap of Faith

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