To Ponder: Disrupting High Performers
Can you generate even greater momentum from a team that’s already motivated and high performing?
By this I mean, those people that are fantastic contributors for your change and organisation more broadly. They are highly reliable, self-driven members of staff who take action to ensure a good result for both themselves and your organisation.
They’re already a work-powerhouse for your change. But what if I were to tell you that there’s a momentum level that’s even higher for this cohort…
Fanatics don’t just like coming to work – they love it. Their obsessions drive them. They actively self-label as being a part of your organisation, not just working for it. They advocate internally for you with any staff that are at lower momentum levels, and are beacons of light within your area, groups, and teams.
So how do we build change fanaticism?
I’ll be upfront here. Building Fanatics is difficult. Don’t get me wrong though, it is absolutely worth it. True fanaticism can be strong enough to overcome almost any sort of pain, generating both higher change momentum and ‘word-of-mouth’ style change adoption. After all, we all know the story of the Apple fanatics who lined up days in advance just to get the newest iPhone.
Or the Potterheads: those Harry Potter fans that would dress up in costume and stand in line for midnight book releases as a sign of their true dedication (minting the author J.K. Rowling over a billion dollars in the process).
So, what’s behind this fanaticism?
Well, two key things:
1) A strong sense of belonging, and
2) Operating beyond expectations (Positive Disruption)
So Change Leaders,
How can you create greater fanaticism within your change?
To Action: ‘Breaking Good’ Those Teams Stuck In Despair
But what if your teams are stuck at the opposite end of the motivational spectrum?
We’ve likely all seen it. That team that’s a black hole of ideas and performance. Sucking it all in - never to be seen again. Feet are dragged. Audible sighs of inconvenience are often heard… And they almost always find an excuse for why they can’t take on the next project.
These are teams stuck in ‘Despair’.
Those in Despair suffer from a complete and utter lack of hope. These people despise coming into work every day and are very likely miserable. They almost always feel stuck, because if they didn’t, you can be sure they would have moved on already. A primary factor for those in Despair is a feeling that their work at your organisation doesn’t matter. They have given up and will just do the bare minimum to get by. Teams stuck in Despair are some of the most difficult to work with, and as much as we would all love to pretend that they don’t exist – we’ve all come into direct contact with them throughout our careers (or perhaps have been there ourselves!).
But are they truly a lost cause? No.
There’s a key issue at play with those stuck in Despair – and that is that they are stuck!
So how do we as change leaders help them ‘break good’?
Provide An Excuse For Hope
The thing is, we humans don’t like to be wrong. What this means is that very rarely will we willingly change our minds without some form of new information or decision catalyst. This is especially so with strongly held negative views. So, to break the shackles of Despair, your aim here is to discretely give these teams the permission to change their mind. None of us want to feel we are inconsistent, so there needs to be a notable change in something around them.
In short - they need an excuse to change their mind.
This requires a physical change in either one or more of the following:
· Who (their team),
· What (their work),
· When (their timetabling),
· Where (their location), or
· How (their systems and processes).
It’s important to keep in mind that these changes will be met with absolute cynicism by those in Despair. The flicker of hope may not be obvious, but it will be there. And both you and they need it.
To Reflect: The $50 Note Difference
Ever put on a pair of pants for the first time in 6 months only to find a $50 note in the back pocket?
It’s quite a pleasant surprise. (And one that future generations may not get to experience given the ongoing societal shift away from cash).
You expected those pants to fit. You expected them to warm and protect your lower half. However, you didn’t expect them to pay for your lunch - and it probably made your afternoon.
That’s the $50 note difference.
How can you create little positive surprises into your standard processes to increase passive, word-of-mouth change adoption?
Coming Soon - Even More Podcast Interviews
Momentum begets momentum.
After the announcement that I’ll be recording with Kevin Eikenberry on his Remarkable Leadership podcast, I’ve been invited to record on a further 3 podcasts over the coming month or so.
The Everyday PM Podcast
Manage Smarter Podcast
The Leader Think Podcast
Expected release for these will be in the coming few months.
Watch This Space.
And if you want to learn more about why I’ve been invited to these shows - you can order your copy of Valuable Change here:
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Have a fabulous weekend. See you next week.