Change – besides, religion and politics, there are few other topics that are so polarizing. Some people are opposed to change regardless of the reason, rationale or logic. Others, often leaders, make a living creating it. The irony is, even some leaders don’t love it, but they instigate it anyway. Why? Leaders understand: Progress is always preceded by change.
In The Secret, Ken Blanchard and I wrote extensively about this practice; we described it like this…
Great Leaders Reinvent Continuously
How are you doing on this? Is it easy for you to drive change, or, is it difficult? What in your world needs to be reinvented? To help you think more deeply about this consider the following three arenas.
Self – How are you different as a leader today than you were 5 years ago? What have you learned? What skills have you developed? What’s your plan for personal growth? Ken and I shared our thoughts on this question in our book, Great Leaders Grow. Is your team or organization stuck? If so, start by looking in the mirror. What is it about you that needs to change? Leaders are learners.
Systems – What work processes do you need to reinvent? If you need a clue regarding where to start on this one, ask yourself: What outcomes need significant improvement? The answer may highlight an area ripe for reinvention. The systems and processes you now have in place are perfectly designed to give you the outcomes you are receiving today. Don’t expect a different outcome if you continue to do the same activities over and over again. Hope is not a strategy for change.
Structure – Another area often in need of reinvention is structure. For some reason, leaders tend to overlook this. I don’t fully understand why. Perhaps we forget the purpose of structure – it is to enable, not inhibit, the accomplishment of the task at hand. If you find it increasingly difficult to accomplish the work, you may be able to solve the problem with a change in structure. Imagine your ideal structure. If your current reality doesn’t match, begin making structural changes.
If all this sounds hard, it is! Now for the good news…
Progress is always preceded by change and creating positive change is your specialty; that’s why you’re a leader.[GLS_Shield]