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Change Management for the Generations

Change management isn't new - it has been around for a long time and there are fantastic experts that have guided many leaders and organizations to implement phenomenal changes. Experts including John Kotter the guru on change have provided ideas and strategies for companies to manage...

If there is one skill that is needed for leaders today as we head to 2020 it is the ability to come up with real time creative solutions. I am talking about in the moment solutions that come from a place  of, 'how can we make this work?' rather than habitual habits of the brain to put up barriers or excuses to progress. In my keynote I delivered today, "Lead with 2020 Vision - Build the Future Workplace Today" I shared this concept as a key success tool for all of us moving forward. A few questions for you to test your creative mind:
leadershiplanguageThe evolution of leadership from autocratic to inclusive is a journey that many leaders are still looking to master. Making the change from a mindset of authority and power towards a mindset of sharing successes and equalization of power is a big one. One of the key ingredients of leading change is the ability to lead with the new leadership language that is required to inspire and engage today's workforce and to set the tone for the future workplace.  
match   Everyone in the organization sets up a constitution with rules to adhere to. The group decides to distribute tasks. Those responsible for tasks own them. There is no micro-management. Brian Robertson     The above quote is from the founder of the Holacracy movement made known by the recent announcement from Zappos that the company has adopted the shared leadership model. This model and others that are being created are the future of leadership. Let’s face it in these times of fast paced technological change the current hierarchical structure cannot support speedy innovation nor does it inspire teams to work towards a mission. So does this mean no more ‘leaders’? Not really……

keepcalmteamI was standing in the line up for Starbucks early this morning before boarding my flight to Denver when I overheard two leaders behind me talking about each of their teams.

The first woman says, "oh my god, Jane has gone rogue on me" and the second woman says, "what did she do?" and the first woman says, "she completely bypassed me with a decision and when I confronted her about it she got upset and told me I was a micro manager".

I smiled to myself - I have been working with leaders for over two decades now and the ongoing common challenge for many leaders is aligning team members with vision and goals. Many leaders get frustrated and irritated that "team members are going rogue".

For me as a leadership consultant I know that its never about the surface behavior -a team members behavior is always about more than meets the eye.

So what is really going on with a team member who 'goes rogue?'

Manage Upwards, Co-worker Managing UpwardsFinding opportunities to manage upwards is not always easy. I was recently working with a group of Gen X and Y leaders who are in the Commercial Real Estate industry. Often when I facilitate a workshop on change and we begin to discuss the impact of different generational attitudes as it relates to change there is a lot of interest. Zoomers (baby boomers who refuse to age) are still the largest leadership demographic in the workplace today and an inflexible Zoomer can be a real challenge for anyone but especially Gen X and Y. Research has confirmed that Gen X and Y are not loyal to a brand, rather they are loyal to a leader or the opportunities within the organization. When a Gen X or Y has a Zoomer boss who is attached to traditional methods, reluctant to explore new ideas or keeps information from the team it is extremely frustrating.  
neomatrix I have been a student of consciousness principles for over twenty years in addition to human behavior psychology and organizational development.   As a leadership and change expert I have seen many leaders and their teams who have made the effort to change and yet have reverted back to habitual behaviors that make change difficult or thwarts the vision altogether.   Why?
accontability Change always creates discomfort- I think the saying is that change is inevitable and growth is optional. You may remember the story of the frog who was put into lukewarm water and it was so comfortable that it never wanted to leave- each day the temperature of the water was increased until eventually the water was boiling and the frog never jumped out! The level to which each of us protects the status quo is where we also suffer because our desire to defend and protect will override our desire to grow. That is unless you believe or learn to believe that being uncomfortable is good and it is in the discomfort that we evolve. A strong influencer on me these days and I have mentioned him in the past- Donny Epstein is a pioneer in the mind/body connection to change. Science has backed his concepts and strategies and his ideas on how humans need to adapt are evolutionary. His research has shown that the more flexible and adaptable we can become as humans the more we wills strive to create 'thriving' lives rather than merely surviving.