SUSTAIN Summer 2021

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3 SUMMER 2021 Step 2: Reacting Reacting is the second step in the change process. It usually comes on its own and can often begin with a change event. Something 'happens', and we react. It is also a critical step that requires us to become aware. Are you aware that you are reacting? And even further, are you aware of why you are reacting? When you find yourself reacting to change or a change event, try to turn this awareness into progress. Denial is common and natural, which is why information is critical. Leaders should focus on building an understanding of the need for change and the scope of the change initiative. I hope this change model has been helpful and can act as a tool for you and your organization as you navigate the change landscape. It's a process, change requires reiteration. Try not to be discouraged for yourself or for anyone on your team who is moving through this process. Instead, try to reflect at any given moment where you are in the four- step process and get back on track. As Sharma reminds us all: "Persist. Greatness loves the relentless." Joe Baker Step 1: Acknowledging Acknowledging change begins with awareness. In many cases, this is also where the process of coping with feelings begins. In the early stages of change, emotions are apparent. This is a very normal part of being human so you should allow yourself or the team you are a part of to experience these emotions. Sometimes we rush through this stage, which can appear later in our process as a pitfall. Patience is critical here. Leaders, in particular, should focus on building acceptance and commitment with themselves and their teams. Step 3: Investigating The step of investigating change is the most pivotal. It begins after feelings are vetted and allows us to begin the process of exploring options. Anticipation is a common experience during the investigating step. It can start to feel exciting and hopeful. Honesty is critical both to yourself and to the people you are trying to build change with. This presents a unique opportunity for leaders to focus on building commitment to the new reality. The more we visualize and talk about the outcome, the more real it becomes. This is how we turn hope into results. Step 4: Implementing The fourth and final step in the change process is to move towards implementation. This can only begin once the direction has been defined. It is the process of understanding new expectations. This is the critical stage of growth, and learning is essential. Our hearts and minds have become open to the change and we now have a plan. New skills are essential as we build towards the future. Learning as a group or team, even if just reading together or sharing a digital learning experience, can boost the all-important element of buy-in. This is the opportunity for leaders to focus on building new skills for themselves and their teams, as well as modelling and rewarding behaviours and norms that suit the future goals of the organization.

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