(Image above from the October 2017 High Performing Culture Summit on Amelia Island)
Photo credit: Up on the Star Deck, “Journeys of the Imagination” by Gary Lee Price
This past weekend we attended the annual Wizard Academy Reunion. Always a blast and as usual, they completely over-delivered. Stirring our sense of adventure, we got to hear Jon Spoelstra, an Academy graduate and author of NYT Bestseller, “Marketing Outrageously.” And found ourselves spell-bound by Virginia Postrel, author of The Power of Glamour.
Wizard Academy teaches many things – but mostly advertising and marketing – to business owners worldwide. Turning little companies into big ones.
Demonstrate doing the right thing in all your actions and all your decisions, especially when no one is looking. Always tell the truth. Acknowledge and own your mistakes, clean them up and make appropriate corrections.
Integrity is the foundation of everything and what makes things work. From a business perspective, Integrity is the basis for workability, which creates opportunities for performance. Performance in an organization becomes a measure of the level of integrity in the business.
In business, like in personal life, the tighter we maintain integrity, the greater the opportunities to perform well. So, when I act inconsistent with what I said I would do, my attention is unnecessarily drawn to explaining it, hiding it, or saying nothing and hoping no one notices. This is wasted energy that could have gone to more productive effort.
It’s important to recognize this especially applies to commitments I make to myself. If I tell myself I am going to commit to a regular exercise regimen and then don’t do it, my thoughts are preoccupied with why not, my explanations, the creeping guilt, and the loss of confidence in myself. This is energy that could be easily applied to the exercise or other productive matters….which could include relaxing!
This is true for the things I tell myself and it’s the same principle for organizations. There is a cleanliness, a freedom and a self-satisfaction to honoring my word which not only impacts me, it impacts how others see me. Most importantly it impacts how I feel about myself and how I perform.
Founder and CEO,
Momentum Consulting, Inc
Author: Dale Halm, OD Practitioner
Is there a leader anywhere who isn’t confronted with leading large scale changes? Leading change successfully is a core leadership competency; it has become a business imperative. Yet how many leaders excel at this? There are stakeholders to manage, communication strategies to execute, employees to engage, and so much more. But whether you are restructuring, implementing new business processes or working to reinvent your organization’s culture, there is a fundamental obstacle all leaders face. The obstacle is, “How do you get others to let go of their resistance to change?” This of course assumes that you, as the leader, fully believe in the change yourself.
When confronted with unsettling change people tend to hold on to the status quo and become cynical. What can cause a tipping point where people begin to embrace change versus dig in and resist it? Yes, robust change models provide a useful framework for change management but what matters most is people’s resolve. Think about that for a moment. Without resiliency and the courage to adapt to new changes the application of theoretical change models will have limited impact on people’s behavior. The groundwork leaders must take on to successfully lead change is to stimulate people’s determination to succeed.
I would like to offer three simple but powerful questions that leaders can use to challenge people’s reaction to change and strengthen their resolve. Each represents a choice both on a personal and organizational level.
Question #1: Will we be one of the 70% of organizations that fail or one of the 30% that succeed at change?
Countless studies reveal that 70% of change efforts fail or fail to meet their intended outcomes. Large scale change efforts can be daunting and overly complex exerting a heavy toll on people and mismanaged business opportunities. By recognizing upfront that the vast majority of change efforts are unsuccessful, leaders and organization can do a reality check. They can clearly carve out what aspects of change to focus on and be authentic about the level of resolve and work needed to see change through. This inspires the organization to make their change effort one of the 30% that succeed.
Question #2: Will we be open to change and expand our capability to shape our future?
In Peter Senge’s book, The Fifth Discipline, he discusses the concept of a “metanoic” organization. The Greek origin of the word metanoic literally means, to change one’s mind, a transformative change of heart. Senge explains that this type of organization continually expands its capacity to create its future; it is the meaningfulness of the experience people are drawn to – being part of something larger than themselves. This question presents alternatives most people truly desire; owning their future and creating a legacy.
Question #3: Will we acknowledge our fears and do what is necessary to implement the change?
Carly Fiorina, former CEO of Hewlett Packard, often talks about change at the personal level. She says that everyone is afraid of something. In addition, she says that the natural instinct of any organization is to preserve the status quo – it is human nature. What distinguishes successful people is what they do in spite of their fears. This question makes people uncomfortable, which is exactly the point. We don’t learn things by always doing what we have done. When people “together” express what’s holding them back they begin to encourage one another to take risks and support each other in the process.
There you have it. Three powerful questions, three choices that challenge the obstacle of resistance to change and rally people to do what they haven’t done before. Every time I have used these questions to help facilitate change they elicit deep reflection and ignite conversations for possibility. This is how accountability and commitment for change get created. This is how an organization’s resolve gets strengthened.
I’ve always thought that questions are more powerful than answers. Author, Peter Block, says, “Transformation comes more from pursuing profound questions than seeking practical answers. Getting the question right might be the most important thing we can do.”
The work of leaders driving change is to push these questions hard. This means leaders need to position these questions as a serious inquiry and set the expectation that people take quality time to engage in rigorous dialogue to determine how they will approach change.
Should leaders really take up the organization’s time with these questions when there are so many things to manage regarding any large scale change initiative? Think of
any significant personal change you have encountered. Until you had the resolve, that is, developed the fortitude to tackle the change, I suspect anything else you did to move things forward was met with limited success. It is the same for organizations. Until people are determined to make change work for them most of the change
activities organizations put in place will have minimal impact.
Using the fundamental questions described in this article will provide the perspective needed to successfully launch any change initiative.
Dale Halm is an OD Practitioner with 20+ years of experience in high technology, energy, and education. He has established a legacy for leading large scale business transformations and building high performance team-based organizations. He authored The Teamwork Toolkit (2011) and is a Registered Organization Development Consultant (RODC).
Original post link: http://www.bestpracticeboard.com/author/dale/
On December 5th, 2013, Nelson Mandela, the first President of South Africa elected in a fully representative democratic election, died at the age of 95. South Africa observed a national mourning period of 10 days. During this time numerous memorial services were conducted around the world. The official memorial service was held at FNB Stadium, Johannesburg, on 10 December.
While working with Botswana mining client I was in Johannesburg at time of Nelson Mandela’s passing and caught this awesome rainbow over the FNB Stadium following his Memorial Service.
“When a man has done what he considers to be his duty to his people and his country, he can rest in peace.” ~Nelson Mandela
First National Bank Stadium or simply FNB Stadium, also known as Soccer City and The Calabash, is a stadium located in Nasrec, bordering the Soweto area of Johannesburg, South Africa. The FNB Stadium is currently the largest stadium in Africa with a capacity of 94,736. The stadium is also known by its nickname “The Calabash” due to its resemblance to the African pot or gourd.
The FNB Stadium was the site of Nelson Mandela’s first speech in Johannesburg after his release from prison in 1990.