my 9 top tips for implementing change – #likeminds (7/10)

my Like Minds keynote on intrapreneurship (7/10)
On the 19th of October 2011, in Exeter in Devon, I delivered a keynote at Like minds. It is entitled “confessions of an intrapreneur”. There are 9 of these anecdotes and tips, which are all used to describe my preferred approach to change management. I have decided to publish the script of my presentation in this blog, starting from lesson number 9 and going backwards to lesson number 1 and then the introduction.
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lesson no. 3: choose the path of least resistance

  • Resistance to change is a staple of change management, so rather than confronting your detractors, it’s best to ignore them and circumvent the issue by working exclusively with the positive change agents that you can find. Therefore, there will be more than one person to advocate the change, and eventually, your detractors will follow in your footsteps when they realise you have succeeded and they can’t do otherwise,
  • If fights arise, I have found time and time again that refusing to confront people was the best way of getting rid of such issues. When the fight gets nasty and personal I go off on a tangent and do something else until the person tires and usually, they do. The most aggressive ones usually make so many enemies for themselves that they either fall victim to their own aggressiveness or, eventually, they go somewhere else and make other people suffer, in search for other fights,
  • It’s best to concentrate on one’s work, one’s results, to be a professional, not to confront people and move ahead,
  • I must also emphasise that one must remain courteous and friendly, even with one’s worst enemies. Always shake hands, never attack them, remain positive: “(Matthew 5:39) But I tell you, Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also” 

Anecdote: when I worked for a large British Bank in the mid-1990s on the Internet strategy for the Bank and was interviewing people, I met some people who were initiating their own project. I proposed that they become part of the team and that we promote their project and use their idea as a driving force for our strategic change. They instead became aggressive and secretive, refused to share their ideas and findings, refused to share their project, and eventually died with it. The Internet project – ours I mean – went on without them, they didn’t benefit from their advance, didn’t make any friends and didn’t help their company either. We didn’t have to confront them, they just shot themselves in the foot.

[Chrysalis photo, Some rights reserved by Odd_dog]

Yann Gourvennec
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