Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Why Trying to Change NEVER Works

(And the “success” secret you’ve been missing)

In one of the top five Harvard Business Review articles of all time, John Kotter explains the reasons change efforts fail. And fail. And fail. They fail over 80% of the time!!! They look good, they sound good, and often a policy or two gets changed. But, in the end…Words change but BEHAVIOR does not (at least not enough to make a difference).

People don’t change unless they have to! Think about it—when was the last time youactually changed your behavior when you didn’t really have to?

There are 8 Major reasons why change efforts fail… But 50% FAIL for only one reason: because THE LEADER doesn’t create a compelling sense of urgency! Seriously—a 50% fail rate for that one reason.

If you believe that you MUST change (or else!), only then will the pain be worth it. How do you establish that sense of urgency?  

Ken Blanchard, the One Minute Manager, did some follow-up research. He discovered that company leaders were totally deceived—they believed that when they announced change, things actually changed! That is so funny to me (since I’ve been at this for 20 years). I want to put my arm around those leaders and say, “Sorry bro, doesn’t work that way. Until you deal with how they feel about it 'personally,' they aren’t going to care about your company.”  

LeaderTribers, here is your chance to succeed where so many have failed:

  1. Figure out why you must change. If you don’t believe it, you’re not ready.
  2. Tell people with passion and urgency. Then communicate it again, and again, and again. (Most leaders under-communicate by a factor of 10!)
  3. BEFORE your announcement, list the reasons why your team members will struggle with the decision, then prepare answers.
  4. Don’t be afraid to ask the people for a solution!
  5. Remember that change is a process, not an event!!! You’ve started… now keep going.

Mark Zuckerberg notes “The biggest risk is not taking any risk... In a world that's changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks."

Getting better at work requires change. Knowing where to change is only part of a successful initiative.Communicating well and addressing concerns are both essential. There is much more, but without those three, the rest won’t matter.

Rob McCleland quotes:

“Every political candidate screams about the need for change—even the incumbents who got us into the mess!”

“Without change, you can’t improve. But where do you start? LeaderTribe helps people with that.”~ Rob McCleland, PhD

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