Great leaders must have a solid foundation of mindsets, perspectives, and tools in order to effectively lead a change. During a leadership series, I talk about Intentional Change Theory (ICT), Leadership and Self-Deception, the power of choice, communication, the discussion outline, handling conflict in a positive way, using a coaching style of management, and motivation theory before we begin to talk about leading change. We start with the change theory from the book Switch: How to Change Things When Change is Hard by, Chip and Dan Heath which uses the model of the Rider, Elephant, and Path. You can read about all of these topics by following the link to the appropriate blog.
Here are some other considerations when leading others through a change:
- When facing a change, we want to clearly understand what is going to happen and why so that we can pass that information along to our subordinates. People are uneasy during a change, and knowledge makes them feel more comfortable. We want to create a clear picture of where we are going and why. People really like to know what the rationale is behind a change.
- We create buy-in by asking for people’s opinions and perspectives. It’s okay if they express negative feelings; it’s important to acknowledge those feelings and keep everyone focused on what they can do. We want to ask for input about the change as much as we can. However, it’s best not to ask for input if the change is set in stone or if we already have our minds made up; it breaks trust.
- Maintaining a positive attitude about the change, whether we like it or not, is crucial. Leaders set the tone for organizational change with their own attitudes. We create unnecessary hardship on people when we impose negative feelings about something that is going to happen anyway. We help the people around us when we stay positive.
If you have some people who aren’t really on board for the change. You can read about how to help them here.
Leading others through a change is the pinnacle of exceptional leadership that requires a solid base of foundational skills and knowledge.
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