Developing Leaders – Tom Yeakley

Taking the Mystery out of Leadership

Leading a Change Process

No leader is satisfied with the status quo. All leaders want to bring change. John Kotter in his modern classic, Leading Change (p 21) urges 8 Steps in the Process of Leading Change.

1. Establish a sense of urgency
• Examine performance against goals
• Identify and discuss crises, potential crises, or major opportunities

2. Create a guiding coalition
• Form a group with enough power to lead the change
• Form the group into a team

3. Develop a vision and strategy
• Create a vision to help direct the change effort
• Develop strategies for achieving that vision

4. Communicate the change vision
• Use every vehicle possible to constantly communicate the new vision and strategy
• Have your guiding coalition model the expected attitudes and behaviors

5. Empower broad-based action
• Get rid of obstacles to the change
• Change systems or structures that undermine the change vision
• Encourage risk-taking and nontraditional ideas, actions and events

6. Generate short-term wins
• Plan for visible improvements in performance, or “wins”
• Create those wins
• Visibly recognize and reward people who made the wins possible

7. Consolidate gains and produce more change
• Used increased credibility to change all systems, structures and policies that don’t fit together and don’t fit the transformation vision
• Hire, promote and develop people who can implement the change vision
• Reinvigorate the process with new projects, themes, and change agents

8. Anchor new approaches in the culture
• Create better performance by implementing the change initiative
• Articulate the connections between new behaviors and organizational success
• Develop means to ensure leadership development and succession

What change are you currently seeking to bring about? Where are you in relationship to the above eight steps? What do you need to do to move forward in your own change process?

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