Effecting change in the Social Age: don’t push harder, share smarter

The Social Age is characterised by states of constant change. Organisational response to change is often to try to drive messages out, to react, to take a stance and push people into place to deliver it. This is all very well and good, but it’s jolly hard work. It’s rather like pushing mud: you put your hands in front of you and push away, but no matter how hard you are pushing, it’s only a tiny bit of mud in front of you that moves. The rest of it has great inertia, just resisting the change or flowing around your fingers.

Brute force or viral?

You can try to effect change by pushing hard, but it’s far better to share smarter, to go viral

Far better, then, to have many hands do the work: rely on your stories to permeate, to spread, to align motivations and intent behind your common narrative. Share with local context, with meaning for individuals according to their everyday reality.

Instead of pushing, seek to inspire: build your reputation and lead from that position. Hierarchical authority drives us to push harder: reputational authority and Social Leadership teach us to create context, to share, to build reputation and magnetic authority

Organisational change is more than just telling people where to go: it involves creating a whole new culture, a whole change in ethos and action. An approach where that change is co-created throughout is stronger than one that tries to drive it from the outside or above.

1. Work out where you are heading
2. Create the spaces to co-create
3. Engage in storytelling and building shared narratives
4. Keep talking: send out contextualised messages to separate groups
5. Listen and draw up shared community narratives to maintain momentum in the journey

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About julianstodd

A learning and development professional specialising in e-learning and learning technology.
This entry was posted in Adaptability, Authority, Change, Collaboration, Community and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

25 Responses to Effecting change in the Social Age: don’t push harder, share smarter

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