Monday, April 2, 2007

At which level in the organization does change process begin?

The change process doesn't start at a level it starts with an individual prepared to take the initiative to bring it about. In a healthy organization that is learning from experience and change is an ongoing process.

Unfortunately, because some people get too comfortable, and the organization stalls, development stops. People at all levels have an investment in the status quo, risk is discouraged and the organization stagnates until its "inhabitants" (at this point in time they are really not active members of anything) are forced to change - usually by the prospect of loosing their jobs.

With inspiration, however, everyone is more willing to take the risk of something new. The inspiration appears inside as a confidence that different personal behavior can bring about different results. When someone takes that risk and the results are seen to be promising, others will follow. They can be subordinates and/or peers and/or more senior people who have been waiting for someone to take a risk and identify alternatives.

There are examples showing that the instigator can be anywhere from someone at the lowest level who demonstrates what is possible by winning back a lost customer, or demonstrating a new process, to the board room when the chair decides to bring in a new CEO.

The lesson in all this is that we cannot wait for someone else to start change because it might not happen. By waiting we are depriving the organization of our contribution and depriving ourselves of the satisfaction of knowing we have done our best. By changing, by learning, we are acknowledging we are alive and that we still believe in ourselves.

organization level, change process, initiative, learning, experience, stalled development, status quo, organizational stagnation, inspiration, risk, contribution,

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