Change requires innovative, intelligent and energetic practitioners

Published by Tony Quinlan on

How highly do you rate changing your organisation?

It’s a topic that I’ve been thinking on recently because of what appears to be an increasing trend of making change/leadership/innovation teams the province of either short-term appointments or steady-as-she-goes staff.  Bright and challenging staff seem to be getting appointed to day-to-day operational roles.

While I think it’s encouraging that organisations think this way, I’m deeply concerned about the quality of people in change teams particularly.  Every team works best with a balance of talents and skills – as the original Belbin model recognised, without boxing people into single roles.

Change and leadership – in current thinking – demand new ways of approaching problems, new ways of acting and the imagination and faith to try new techniques without being able to predict the final outcomes precisely.  While it’s always good to have some detail people and some completer/finishers, the drive has to come from other types – innovators, intelligentsia, people willing to try new perspectives.

There are, of course, exceptions, but look at your change team (or yourself, if you’re leading change).  How strong is the tendency to follow established processes?  To take calculated risks?  To be imaginative?  To keep your head down? To need to keep control over every element?


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