Change, Innovators, Creativity and Community, Will it Blend?

As the technology age moves us along, innovation has been heralded as one of the few growth spaces left, and the power of community, think social media, is the other.  

Do they blend?  

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Does creativity have a place in how this can happen?

Enter change.  It is important to keep change leadership and innovation separate, but related and integrated so that both qualities assist in successful realization of an organization’s mission & aspirations through taking advantage of the yearnings of its current and future talent.

Sometimes this is really about:

Oh, you 10+ years employees.  You were cool when you were young and energetic, but now we’d really prefer to get more new-thinking, young things in here.  

Current talent, are you really talented anymore?

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A Two Step, Two Video Dance towards Loose – Tight Change & Innovation Leadership

If there is one thing that is buzzing in leadership circles in social media, it is that building an innovative, agile culture is key to remaining viable, surviving disruptive change, and thriving.

Consider Loose – Tight leadership by rightsizing your grip.

Deb, first flying experience

Grip the steering wheel too tightly and the result can be crushed creativity, stifled innovation and minimal risk taking.  You also ward away the energy from your renegades that bring productive tension to your organization.  Grip too loosely, and fragmentation, de-acceleration and multiple leaders heading in different directions can crop up.

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The Impact of a Challenging Goal, Parasailing in Key West

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If you’re trying to be miserable, it’s important you don’t have any goals.

  • No school goals, personal goals, family goals.
  • Your only objective each day should be to inhale and exhale for 16 hours before you go to bed again.
  • Don’t read anything informative, don’t listen to anything useful, don’t do anything productive.
  • If you start achieving goals, you might start to feel a sense of excitement, then you might want to set another goal, and then your miserable mornings are through.

~ John Bytheway

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Knowledge, Passion and Power: 3 Simple Change Principles to Release It

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Leverage is a reason that leaders use when choosing to work in collaboration as well as hire consultants, who have the skills of helping leaders see multiple perspectives.  This is especially an asset when dealing with difficult, complex, even wicked problems. 

This quote rings true in our experience with change projects:   “If knowledge is power, clandestine knowledge is power squared; it can be withheld, exchanged, and leveraged.” ~ Letty Cottin

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Joining Social Media Ecosystems, Learning the Ropes

Happy Social Media Day!  It’s a great day to share learning about on-line communities. Pam covers the opportunities and challenges you may encounter in finding a good fit and taking right action in find the right relationships on-line, as well as the a social media culture & style that works for you.

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Change Leaders: Why Should Anyone Trust Your Vision? John Kotter and Harvard Business Review

John Kotter, a change management thought leader of yore and Harvard professor emeritus, has written books that have helped manage change. He reminds us that the following quote underscores the need to lead from the side and the rear as well as from the front.

A leader is most effective when people barely know he exists. When his work is done, his aim fulfilled, his troops will feel they did it themselves.

~ Lao-tzu
John Kotter at the Global change management conference, ACMP, 2011

There are many change management trends from the first decade of the 21st century that I imagine Dr. Kotter has negotiated in his long career. As I prepared for an Association of Change Management Practitioners conference at the time of writing this post, including editing new videos with change leaders, I wanted to share some of John Kotter’s gems. Below is an excerpt, that highlights some common assumptions about how leaders approach change, still as relevant in the second decade, as they were in the first:

The conventional decide-execute model handles large changes very poorly.

~ John Kotter
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Selecting a Coach: 10 Questions to Ask Your Prospective Coach

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What are good questions to ask a prospective coach?  I was interviewed by Terry Wisner, BlogTalk radio host recently on the subject.   

I covered the three “Cs” of coaching, also referred to as 3 core competencies of coaching.

Blog Talk Radio Interview

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Co-Creation in Theory U: Leading from the Future as it Emerges & the Road to Commitment

Source:  Otto Sharmer and The Presencing Institute

The terms “letting go” and “letting come,” captured my imagination as Theory U arrived on scene several years ago.  The compelling nature of the U model visual added to its allure. 

The concepts that Theory U features are intended to help leaders and managers in the public and private sector break through unproductive patterns of behavior.  This includes breaking through barriers of ignoring their own staff and clients wisdom and other maladies that produce ineffective patterns of decision making.

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Entrepreneurial Success in Business, Professor Saras Saravathy and Effectuation

To understand innovation and entrepreneurship, listen to Saras Saravathy, Associate Professor – Darden School of Business, University of Virginia.  She speaks on how to be successful in business, starting  with “entrepreneurship is teachable.”  She has also been featured on TEDxMidAtlantic.

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Synchronicity! Meaning Making and Sense Making

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Summary: In this session we explored the science and application of synchronicity and other means of meaning making. What is the place of synchronicity in how we facilitate change and transition?  This session will explore how we help ourselves, and therefore help data from the field of existence emerge.  Theory U is a tool, a method and way of seeing and facilitating change, which invites data to emerge through shared meaning making helping co-create and sustain the change process.

What is Theory U?

Its originator, Otto Scharmer, says it is three things.  It is a:

1)  Framework describing a change process.

2) Method for effecting change personally and organizationally, in communities and globally.

3) Description of phenomena in the world – what is naturally happening.

Learning Goals:

Participants will be able to:

Define the concept of synchronicity

  • Identify C.G. Jung’s role in developing the principle
  • Understand how Theory U helps data to emerge
  • Engage groups to create shared meaning referencing Theory U
  • Understand how shared meaning influences change processes

Recommended Reading:

If the concept of synchronicity is unfamiliar, we highly recommend reading:

  • Synchronicity: An Acausal Connecting Principle by C.G. Jung or
  • The 7 Secrets of Synchornicity (Your Guide to Finding Meaning in Signs Big and Small) by Trish and Rob MacGregor

Here are the updated blog links to read more about what we covered in the session:

Co-Creation in Theory U: Leading from the Future as it Emerges & the Road to Commitment | Reveln

Talking with Daryl Conner and Change Management Resources, Circa 2011

Change Leadership: Why Should Anyone Trust Your Vision? | John Kotter & Harvard Business Review

Visit the ODX Members Forum at for additional information and to become familiar with the subject.

This session was offered:  Tuesday, March 8, 2011, 4:00 PM – 6:00 PM  Plymouth, MI

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