Change Management Resources
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Mount Everest Shows the Danger Of Clinging To Goals: Embrace Uncertainty Like An Entrepreneur

Mount Everest Shows the Danger Of Clinging To Goals:  Embrace Uncertainty Like An Entrepreneur | Change Management Resources | Scoop.it

In 1996 a disaster of historic proportion happened on the peak of Mount Everest. In the entire climbing season, 15 climbers died. Eight of those deaths took place on a single day."


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In the corporate world we’re often focused on achieving our goals at all costs. This eventually reaches the status of dogma.

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Journalist and mountain climber Jon Krakauer captured this story in his book “Into Thin Air;” he was on the mountain that day.
    
Krakauer puts part of the blame on the stubbornness of a climbing guide. While there is some evidence to support this claim, most climbers are, by definition, stubborn and arrogant. Yet disasters of this magnitude are rare. 
    
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In this case the teams encountered a traffic jam at Hilary pass that slowed progression, and disregarded their turnaround time.   ...Members, however, continued on reaching the summit   ...Doug Hansen, a postal service worker from the New Zealand group, was the last to summit. While he made it to the top, the odds were against him ever coming back.

Like seven others, he died on the descent. 

     

...What would it look like to embrace uncertainty?

      

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Start with your means.  Don't wait for the perfect opportunity.
   
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Professor Saras Sarasvathy interviewed forty-five “successful” entrepreneurs and found a disconnect between our thoughts on entrepreneurs as successfully pursuing a goal-oriented approach and reality.

    

"An entrepreneur's ...precise endpoint was often mysterious to them, and their means of proceeding reflected this. Overwhelmingly, they scoffed at the goals-first doctrine of Locke and Latham. Almost none of them suggested creating a detailed business plan or doing comprehensive market research to hone the details of the product they were aiming to release."

  

The most valuable skill of a successful entrepreneur...[is] the ability to adopt an unconventional approach to learning: an improvisational flexibility  [including] a willingness to change the destination itself, [using] a set of principles she calls “effectuation.”

      

 “Start with your means. Don’t wait for the perfect opportunity. Start taking action, based on what you have readily available: what you are, what you know and who you know.”

     

A second is the “principle of affordable loss”  ...— ask how big the loss would be if you failed. So long as it would be tolerable, that’s all you need to know. Take that next step, and see what happens.

        

“The quest for certainty blocks the search for meaning,” argued the social psychologist Erich Fromm. “Uncertainty is the very condition to impel man to unfold his powers.” Uncertainty is where things happen. It is where the opportunities — for success, for happiness, for really living — are waiting.

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Deb Nystrom, REVELN's insight:

As one who faithfully taught purpose, goals and work planning since the 90s, I've learned to revise my thinking post 9-11, in a global, "anti-fragile" (Taleb) age, embracing a different approach to adaptive change.  Now, it is especially important to think like an entrepreneur, to embrace uncertainty, and to get clear about how goals can also be a trap.  

    

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“A goal is not always meant to be reached, it often serves simply as something to aim at.”  

~ Bruce Lee
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This piece illustrates the deadly side of goal-setting, and features one of my favorite entrepreneurial professors, Dr. Saras Saravathy - who has the research goods on how to embrace uncertainty, a bias for action, and how pushing through failure helps create entrepreneurial success.

    
Entrepreneurial thinking is a mindset that can help all of us let go of the industrial age rigidity.  Note that GM is mentioned in the article.   It's worth pondering for what you might choose to do differently, tolerating a certain amount of uncertainty, in your own life, tonight and tomorrow.  

    

~  Deb 

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Deb Nystrom, REVELN's curator insight, June 25, 2014 2:18 PM

As one who faithfully taught purpose, goals and work planning since the 90s, I've learned to revise my thinking post 9-11, in a global, "anti-fragile" (Taleb) age, embracing a different approach to adaptive change.  Now, it is especially important to think like an entrepreneur, to embrace uncertainty, and to get clear about how goals can also be a trap.  
    
This piece illustrates the deadly side of goal-setting, and features one of my favorite entrepreneurial professors, Dr. Saras Saravathy - who has the research goods on how to embrace uncertainty, a bias for action, and how pushing through failure helps create entrepreneurial success.

    
Entrepreneurial thinking is a mindset that can help all of us let go of the industrial age rigidity.  Note that GM is mentioned in the article.   It's worth pondering for what you might choose to do differently, tolerating a certain amount of uncertainty, in your own life, tonight and tomorrow.  


~  Deb 

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Prosci's Q & A on Bosom Buds: Change management and project management

Prosci's Q & A on Bosom Buds: Change management and project management | Change Management Resources | Scoop.it


Highlights:


Prosci has delivered a webinar on integrating change management and project management three times and asked attendees the following question:


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“What are the most pressing topics or issues you are facing regarding change management and project management integration?”

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Here are highlights of their analysis of the most common needs


Top 5 common pressing issues


1. Support and buy-in for change management from project teams


Participants felt that project leaders and project managers did not see the value or importance of change management. 


Tip: Make change management meaningful and real. 


2. Support for change management from leadership

...leaders and sponsors have a limited awareness of the need for change management, which impedes the critical integration of change management with project management activities. 

Tip: ...By making a direct connection between how well the people side of change is managed and the ultimate ROI of the project, you can shift the context and the conversation.


Others:


3. Scope, timing, and prioritization

4. Direction on how to integrate project management and change management. 

5. Role definition and clarity


Click the title to read the full article.


Change Management is an engagement focus.  Exert too much control, and you stifle it.  Here's more about control issues within a project implementation:

   

    



Via Virtual Global Coaching
Deb Nystrom, REVELN's insight:

"Prosci provides their perspective on how change management and project management cross paths in the execution of an initiative based on recent webinar Q & As."


These are helpful viewpoints on the state of the practice.  


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Do you Need Change Management with that, Project Managers?

Do you Need  Change Management with that, Project Managers? | Change Management Resources | Scoop.it

"How to use the right tools for the job - determining when comprehensive Change Management is essential - along with Project Management."


Gail has a track record of robust, detailed posts on the many facets of change management, including the project management combo - more than, "do you want fries with that?"


Here are some highlights on the pairings of CM and PM in her blog post from awhile back exploring conflicts between the two disciplines.


Excerpted:

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When employee discretion can impact ROI [so you] need employee commitment, then projects benefit from Change Management.

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Determining “how much CM and what forms should it take” is not a scoping exercise for a PM.  This requires an experienced CM practitioner with an array of assessment tools (that analytical minds can relate to) and a truckload of integrity and communication skills (and an enlightened leader with long term commitment to the organization). 


When employee discretion can impact ROI, i.e. you cannot drive 100% of the benefits through compliance but need employee commitment, then projects benefit from CM. 

 

  • PMs serious about considering CM in a transformational change will provide for a professional CM Risk Assessment in the planning phase [to] provide data to inform discussions and decision making.
   
  • [Get] ROI anchored and...defined scope of the project. 
   
  • Without adequate People Change Management, [and] ... Program Management, transformational projects are not actually “finished”.  
   
  • PM and CM partnering and a tangible commitment to [stay] with the roll out long enough...ensures benefits realization.


Click the title to view the full article in context.


Change Management may also include large group events that can make or break a successful realization of a change project.  


Offering traditional meetings, including virtual, as well as alternative formats, like agenda-less meetings such as "Open Space" can refresh and bring new energy to a tired implementation process.


Here are several samples from Deb on alternative meeting formats for successful implementations:

   

   

   

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