December 2001 was a time of great turmoil in the world and in my life. The world was still reeling from the events of 9/11 and its consequences. I had just learned that the nonprofit training and consulting business I ran was about to lose the majority of its funding literally overnight. I was faced with the question of whether to stay and rebuild the organization or go out on my own.
Jeanine has a really big change initiative in the works. Here she is in her own words:
“This may not sound like a big deal but I need to rally my family to clean out the attic before winter comes. We’ve got 25 years of stuff stored up there: Christmas decorations, luggage, the kids’ old sports equipment, and who knows what else. We haven’t been able to move around up there for years. Plus it’s really dusty and we’ve got mice and birds in there.
I’ve tackled organizational change efforts with fewer moving parts than this one!
Have you ever offered unsolicited feedback and had it blow up in your face?
Or spent hours preparing what you wanted to say then had it land badly even though you sugarcoated it?
Or tried time and again to get your point across about how someone’s behavior negatively affected you…only to end up in yet another “groundhog day” argument?
I’m deeply immersed in Charles Duhigg’s compulsively readable book, The Power of Habit.
Organizational leaders often play a key role in change efforts. Given that responsibility, it's easy to serve as "change cheerleader" and perceive any resistance as unwelcome. I'd like to offer a different perspective.