Humans don’t generally like uncertainty, and when a lack of clarity about the future relates to something as personal as one’s livelihood, the struggle can be intense. The pain of this uncertainty can be worse that the certainty of pain!
Watching the Kansas City Royals & San Francisco Giants battle it out this week reminds me of a baseball legend from the 1948 pennant chase. It’s a story about baseball, superstars and heroic effort. It’s also about leveraging your best people in clutch situations while avoiding the urge to over-rely on your ace players and put team goals at risk.
Agents of change have a risky job. They are, by definition, a threat to the status quo. One of the more frightening ways that people react to such threats is with anger. …and as a Change Agent, don’t be surprised if sometimes that anger is directed straight at you! In my last article, we […]
I’ve been told – as most leaders are told during their careers – that taking action is critical to success. We’re rewarded for doing. We’re rewarded for results. The unfortunate flip side of this prejudice for action is that leaders are not typically rewarded for stopping and thinking before taking action. . I’ve also noticed […]
When it comes to tracking change adoption, identifying levels of change support or uncovering pockets of change resistance, data may be king, but information should rule your decision-making process. In my last article, I introduced a way for Change Agents to gather and apply accurate data related to change support, adoption and resistance. It all […]
The last article on theBigRocks was authored by our first-ever guest writer. Dr. Rodger Dean Duncan is an accomplished Change Agent who worked for several decades in the field before capturing his methods in a book called “Change Friendly Leadership“. He shared part of his new book in that post. I would encourage you to […]
I’m up in the mountains today and even though the calendar and the weatherman predicted it, one of this year’s first blasts of wintery weather caught me off guard. It also looks to have altered the clothing choices of most folks – including me. A nice, warm coat is definitely this week’s hot fashion accessory. […]
Ugh. It’s election season in the United States and the rhetoric is flying in every direction. Since I live in the “swing state” of Florida, it’s nearly impossible to watch television for five minutes without being told who’s going to raise my taxes or destroy my future. Regular readers of this blog know that I […]
Few professional skills will correlate more closely with your ability to lead change as your ability to facilitate influential groups through critical discussions and timely decisions. Being able to guide people as they define their goals for a given interaction – and then consistently reach those outcomes – is a big part of helping your […]
So far in this series, I’ve focused on how Change Agents can be more effective by learning and applying the art of facilitation to their routine work. We’ve talked about different ways that people think and how good facilitators pay attention to this variance as they guide group discussions and decisions. Over the next few […]
I wonder if the cattle-driving skills I learned as a child growing up on a farm in Minnesota influenced my interest in group facilitation. Long before the catchphrase “herding cats” became popular, I had come to enjoy pulling and pushing strong-willed people through challenging processes. Based on that experience, I firmly believe that the art […]
Change Agent Tip #40: Don’t Wait. Communicate. It’s hard to over-emphasize the value of communicating with stakeholders when you’re implementing change. “Failure to Communicate” is consistently listed as one of the top causes of lackluster change results even though common logic, past experience and routine risk management would tell us to err on the side […]
I’m a huge fan of Freakonomics. In their books, blogs, films and podcasts, co-authors Stephen Dubner and Steven Levitt regularly explore what they call “the hidden side of everything”. They research cool topics like aligning incentives to motivate behavior, proving or disproving causality and digging into data related to all matters of systems theory as […]
There’s a time to fall in love and a time to fall in line. Sorry to put it so bluntly, but while some changes are perceived as being a good deal for everyone involved, sometimes change is needed for less-then-positive reasons. In the world of implementing change, the chances are good that you’ll see both […]
Change Agent Tip #31 In my last article, I described methods for Change Agents to reclaim control of their overflowing inboxes by, among other things, setting aside dedicated slices of time each day to focus on handling email and using a 2-minute rule to knock out emails that are easy to answer. Click here to […]
Change Agent Tip #25 One of my favorite parts of helping people deal with change is the chance I get to work with some incredibly talented leaders at all levels of my client organizations. One such leader had a great way of boiling complex behavioral expectations down to simple phrases that I like to call […]