… I ran workshops for leaders in large corporate organisations. They wanted change.
Sometimes their situation was remedial, where something wasn’t working. Mostly it was generative change, taking what worked well for them and amplifying it. Very occasionally it was transformational.
I learnt a lot hosting these workshops. As you can imagine every experience was unique. And I saw different levels of resistance to change … depending on the audience and the context.
The workshops started with me inviting people to try out a tiny change. With the promise that, if they chose to play, they’d experience something worthwhile.
The tiny change was … try it right now for yourself … move your watch from where you normally wear it, onto the other wrist.
Do this and you should get some sense of awkwardness, bordering on the uncomfortable. Go on, do it.
Within a few minutes most people would swap the watch back to their ‘normal’ wrist. You’ll probably do the same.
This demonstration gave me the opportunity to explain how strong our desire to preserve the status quo – our normal – can be. We’d then talk about the changes ahead and what the signs of resistance might be.
Consultancy is mostly about changing things. Structures, processes, technology and so on. Fundamental to this are questions you, as a consultant, must ask and answer:
How do I feel about this change? What are my expectations?
How does my clients feel? And what are their reservations?
So, in closing, last year we all had to change our work practices without notice. We had to move our watches, so we did. As we approach another change, unlocking the country, we have an opportunity to move time back to where it was before.
How does you feel about that? And what are your reservations?