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Enterprise wide change superiror results through systems thinking - William J.

William J. Enterprise wide change superiror results through systems thinking - Wiley publishing , 2005. - 353 p.
ISBN: 0-7879-7146-4
Download (direct link): enterprisewidechangesuperi2005.pdf
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The Rollercoaster of Change illustrates the natural and normal way people react to change. It doesn't matter whether the system is an individual, an interpersonal relationship, an intact team, a cross-functional team, or a total organization; it is
E
Wave After Wave of Changes
221
still a living, organic system. In his seminal work on the transition aspect of change, Bridges (1991) discusses this concept extensively.
The Rollercoaster is perhaps the most important concept change consultants can use to understand the process of EWC. The Rollercoaster can be applied to every change initiative within an overall Enterprise-Wide Change effort.
In an EWC journey, a major concern is the right-hand side of the Rollercoaster, which requires the involvement and participation of many people. Enlisting participation contributes to the new, shared vision and desired outcomes, both for the people involved and for the organization as a whole. The right-hand side of the Rollercoaster allows people to discover for themselves what's in it for me (WIIFM).
Any kind of new learning that helps people feel they are growing also helps to get an enterprise through the Rollercoaster. Unfortunately, change leaders can experience five different pathways with the Rollercoaster, not all of them yielding the superior results desired.
It takes eighteen months to two years of steady disciplined effort to feel comfortable with new behavior.
Harles Cone
Why does it take so long?
Successful individual change requires changes in people's knowledge, skills, and attitudes resulting in three waves of change.
Wave #1: Knowledge = Acquired new intellectual understanding
Wave #2: Skills = Developed through active involvement, participation, and
practice
Wave #3: Attitude = Supported emotionally by peers and supervisors
Rollercoaster Questions
Question #1: It is not whether or not we will go through shock and depression . . .
but rather, when will it occur?
Question #2: How deep will the trough be? The depth of psychological change
will take away from the energy for performance in a person's or a team's life.
Question #3: How long will it take to get over to the right-hand side, rebuilding?
It is not a given that the Rollercoaster has to involve a major dip during a change process. The depth and the length of the
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Enterprise-Wide Change
Question #4:
Question #5:
Question #6:
Question #7:
change frequently depend on leadership's ability to manage themselves and others through this curve so that the curve itself is as shallow as possible.
Will we get up to the right-hand side of the curve and rebuild at all? The left-hand side of the Rollercoaster is a given, but as Figure 8.1 illustrates, reaching a high point on the right-hand side is not. Reaching the "top" of the right-hand side requires doing many things right and having proactive strategies to guide the organization through change.
Will we rebuild to the highest level of new achievement—one that makes the entire change process and pain worthwhile? Viewing the situation from the current state, you should carefully examine whether the outcome or final rebuilding stage is at a higher level, the same level, or some lower level than where you were before. The only reason to undergo change at all is to end up with an improvement that is worth your tolerating the pain and the dysfunctional behavior during the chaos, complexity, and emotions of the Rollercoaster's dip.
How many different Rollercoasters might we have to experience at any one time? This is a particularly troubling question in the 21st Century. From a Systems Thinking perspective, no organization ever experiences only one Rollercoaster at a time. Since people's personal and professional lives are intertwined, they experience a confluence of many different changes at the same time. The conflicting emotions that we have about change are often the result of multiple concurrent changes.
Will we hang in and persevere through the change? The hang-in point is where many EWC processes fail. The key is to recognize that this is a Rollercoaster, understand what the hang-in point feels like as it is occurring, and persist despite depression and/or anger. The perils of attempting to stop an EWC midway through are many, as you can see. An interrupted change leaves you in a lower position than you were in to begin with—even more reason to persevere through that "hang in" point.
Wave After Wave of Changes
223
The only alternative to persistence is failure. Nothing in the world can take the place of persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education alone will not; the world is full of educated idiots. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent.
Calvin Coolidge
Question #8: How can we deal with normal resistance? The reality is that
depression, anger, pessimism, cynicism, other negative emotions, and the accompanying resistance are normal. Leadership can either assist it by applying the methods described earlier or make it far worse by saying things like "You shouldn't be upset" or "If you don't change, I'm going to fire you." Dealing with resistance is better done through participation, empathy, and open communication than through command-and-control pushing, which is often the first instinct of inexperienced (and sometimes incompetent) managers.
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