I ran a session with a group a couple of weeks ago, looking at practical aspects of modern learning design, and discussing how we drive change in practice throughout our Organisations. When we discussed the forces that can block change, the usual ideas came up: we are all busy, rewarded for what we have always done, and that change may take power away from certain established domains, in favour of emergent ones (look at how Data Scientists are suddenly the flavour of the day).
One woman shared a reflection: she said that she had a mortgage, family responsibilities, and a dog that had the habit of eating strange things. The legacy of this canine gluttony being a stream of vets bills i assume.
We may not all have dogs, or even mortgages, but the point was important: change is typically not blocked by bad people doing bad things, but rather by great people just unable to do anything. We are held in stasis by systems that reward repetition and compliance, whilst talking about experimentation and agility.
I reminded this group about the principle of six week change: if you cannot effect some change that you can measure within six weeks, then you are probably not changing at all. We are all busy, and all have constraint imposed upon us, but it’s only by taking the first of those ten thousand steps that anything will change at all, and we should remember that there is often a cost for every single one.