future matters

Team engagement

18 February 2019

Team engagement

How to make the desired transformations a reality?

When we partner with leaders to help them design and realize the desired future of their company we always talk about how to engage their teams. Transformations only happen when people feel the need to change and are committed to the future direction. In organizational change theory, they use the formula ‘effectiveness = quality x acceptance’ for this. You can develop the greatest strategy in the world, but if your people won’t implement it because they’re not engaged there will be no effect.

Last week we spoke to the director of a leadership programme, and he told us he always gives his students a choice: ‘imagine your strategy is 80% spot on in terms of quality of content, but only excites 20% of your people, or your strategy is just a 20% start but 80% of your people are enthusiastic and eager, what would you choose?’ The answers vary, but two groups of people answer consistently: business consultants opt for the 80% strategy, learning professionals for 80% excitement. It made us realize why we have such a hard time finding a word for what we do. Consultants are too much about the content only, facilitators focus too much on the process. We’re happiest when we enable the teams we work with to realize their own transformations, and use our knowledge and experience, creative process and people skills to support this. Time for a new name for our profession!

What would you choose: quality of content or excitement? How do you inspire your people to take part in your organization’s transformation?