Planning a change

In this series of Speakers Associates posts we tap directly into the power of our extensive roster of speakers to find what they think. We tackle some of the biggest topics you’ll face in your organisation and distil that advice to its essentials.

Here we ask; what is the key to successful change management?

Miles Hilton-Barber describes himself as a “blind adventurer” and has, since the age of 50, set numerous world records whilst undertaking extreme endurance events across the world. He is a true inspiration in the way he has overcome his own personal setbacks by refusing to give in.

He says;

“Start with your goals, not your current circumstances, and think unconventionally. I lived as a victim for many years after going blind, accepting the conventional thinking from society that blindness was a major limiting factor for a person.

Now I live my life, starting with my goals, not my blindness, and figure out what I need to do differently. Companies need to be beware of developing a victim mentality and do the same.”

Successful change management has to take place first in the personal lives of the leadership, or it will never succeed. Add in teamwork, unity and vision - perseverance when things go wrong plus a sense of humour and remember that the only limits in your life and company are those you accept yourself!”

Motivational speaker and author of Taming Tigers Jim Lawless works to ignite the desire and courage for personal change, often in the context of shifting performance requirements within their organisations. He says “Our evolutionary journey gives us a double edged sword - we want challenge, progress and success, yet we are programmed to shy away from new and uncertain activities and interactions.

"In the current shift from the Industrial Age mind-set to the Knowledge Economy, successfully navigating this dichotomy is critical to personal and organisational success. To achieve personal change, people need self -awareness and confidence in effective, proven tools. Taming Tigers was developed, and is proven, to deliver just that."

International award-winning thought leader and Professor of Business & Management, Vlatka Hlupic says “The key to successful change management is to focus on people and purpose. Implement the change programme collaboratively by involving a wide range of employees in design and implementation of the change programme.”

Author and speaker René Carayol agrees it is about the people. With a focus on inspirational leadership, culture & business transformation, he says; "Organisations don't change, the people within them do. We tend to focus on the 3 Ps - People, Process and Procedure.

Leaders energise People to get excited for the change. Managers then follow up by getting the necessary Processes in place. Then (and usually lagging behind) HR brings the Procedures up to date to match the changes made.

A strong contemporary insight would be that - Collaboration is the New Leadership. No change is best done alone anymore.

Most change initiatives today need to be implemented (horizontally) across the organisation. This requires collaboration and collegiate behaviour.”

Alan O'Neill is the change management expert who turned around Selfridges - he has worked with some amazing brands and believes that the key thing to remember is the importance of communication. He says;

“People naturally resist change for reasons such as comfort zones and so on. Therefore the more you include them in the change process the better.”

If you’re keen to learn more about what these fascinating thinkers can do for your company you can follow up with their published work or we can help you book them to speak at your event.

Aug 19, 2015 By Lucy Thorpe