When I suggest big course corrections for people or organizations, they are often flabbergasted. This gast of flabber doesn’t come from them being dumb or even surprised by the idea of change. They are going thru a little bit of a window of pain where they realize that the way they’ve been doing things might not be working for them.
The question that comes up first is “How long have we been doing this wrong?” This question isn’t verbalized, it’s just turned into a feeling of anger toward the messenger (me) or shame towards themself. So, this question is not really necessary at the start.
The second question is “How?”
- How do we cast for diversity when all our friends are white?
- How do we focus on empathy?
- How do we become leaders of our audience?
- How do we take responsibility for our mission?
- How do we make a new brand?
The answer is “Try.” It’s important to remember that this question of “How?” is our second line of defense to protect us against that first question. It hurts to change and “How?” is trying to save us from the pain. If the answer happens to be “Nevermind, it’s impossible!” we’re saved. No need to change.
The answer “Try” makes it obvious that we can give it a go and we can start answering our own question pretty easily. We could brainstorm in one hour probably some methods to try to make major changes.
The great thing about major changes is that a little bit of effort can yield mega results. When we’ve been training for 5 years, running a little faster than our best speed is hard. Running a lot slower is easy.