What is the secret to sustainable growth? What does it take to navigate and lead your organization through a change process successfully?
In my previous email, I introduced you to the RCA Seasons of Growth™ framework, which we have spent years honing and using to successfully guide a myriad of organizations through the process of change and growth.
Like a seasoned gardener, a wise leader knows that change and growth isn’t a linear process and that you don’t get results overnight.
Our framework highlights the similarities between leading change in an organization and bringing about a thriving garden… both need thoughtful action in the here and now in order for the long-term goal to become reality.
Today, I’m going to tell you more about the critical first step in our framework – Preparing.
When contemplating change, it is common to want to dive in headfirst, but skipping this step can be fatal. I’ll explain why and what you can do to set yourself up for success from the start.
Until next time,
PS: I’d love for you to share one takeaway from this newsletter. Did you discover anything today that you can implement in your organization?
Read more… Preparing
When thinking of change or growth in your organization, what’s the first thing that comes to mind?
These elements are certainly important, but there’s something crucial missing. Without the foundational step of preparing, no change effort will be sustainable. Growth will be stunted and may even fizzle out without taking root properly.
The best leaders recognize this and create an environment that encourages sustainable growth.
Consider this… A seasoned gardener wouldn’t just sprinkle seeds haphazardly and hope for the best, would they? They know this won’t create healthy plants and trees, let alone a blooming garden.
So the gardener starts by carefully studying their landscape, keeping the end result they want in mind. What is the weather like, and how is it behaving? As they plan the layout of their garden, they consider what sort of soil they are working with. Is there enough water? They will turn over the soil, picking out stones and weeds, and watering the ground. What else needs to go, and what can stay? They add the right fertilizer to enrich the soil, preparing it for the growth it will need to support.
This is an adaptive and learning process. As the gardener becomes more familiar with what they have to work with, they will identify what will be possible. They might need to modify their big vision to better fit with any constraints in the landscape. And they will be clearer on where they need to begin the work of creating the garden.
In this way, the gardener diligently lays the groundwork that will bring their vision to life. Taking shortcuts here or rushing the process will inevitably lead to stunted or failed growth.The gardener creates a plan for their garden, knowing that while they can expect to see some short-term benefits, their work may not truly bear fruit for years.
Once you have completed this step and made a careful plan, you are more prepared to move on to the next phase of the change process… cultivating.
Read more about this in our next newsletter!
As a leader, one of the more important things to explore while preparing for a change initiative are the people who will be affected.
Do you know enough about who these groups are? What might be needed to ensure they welcome and make use of the changes?
One helpful tool in this phase is the Stakeholder Assessment.
Many groups of people are likely to be impacted by the changes. Some may find that what they are currently doing is no longer needed. Some may have a vested interest in the status quo continuing just as it is. And some will easily welcome to the changes – but is there another agenda at play?
The Stakeholder Assessment allows you to identify the various groups of affected people, groups, even other organizations. Once you have a better idea of who they are, you can gather information about and assess their interests.
This will allow you to better understand who might welcome and who might oppose the planned change. And then you can develop your plan using these insights.
Read more about how to carry out a Stakeholder Assessment.
So, what do I think about the current culture of meetings and collaboration? I’m happy to share my latest podcast interview in which I have a few things to say about this!
I was a guest on the “Collaboration Is Culture” podcast, where I discussed a variety of topics, including…
⭐ Changes in the current ways of working, and what’s broken
⭐ Expectations of employees and employers
⭐ The impact of applying meeting-centric collaboration in the new paradigm
⭐ The alternative to meeting-centric collaboration and why
You can listen to the full episode at https://bit.ly/3E9kfFp
You can also find it on Apple Podcasts and Spotify!
3 Ways you can work with me: