Sunday, September 20, 2015

Have Fun With Change

I have written a great deal about implementing change successfully over the years. One must realize that change is really hard and a commitment to see the process through is vital if the end goal is cultural transformation that endures over time.  Success lies in a leader’s ability to make difficult decisions when needed. Leadership is not a popularity contest.  True leaders make the tough decisions instead of trying to please everyone.   In the end, real leaders take action and their ability to be catalysts for change are not defined by a title or position. They are defined by the example they set.

Image credit: http://www.brainyquote.com/photos/a/alanwatts386511.jpg

The key goal for any change initiative is sustainability that results in an improved learning culture. This requires a mindset shift and many other important elements. The bottom line though is the fact that change is hard for both the initiator and those beings asked to embrace the new initiative.  A simple solution, make change fun.

Dr. Angeline Lim and Dianne Conway discuss the importance of instilling fun into the change process:
"Nearly every day, leaders must initiate and/or help to sustain some sort of change in others. This can be hard work! Often, leaders are taught to "overcome" the dark side of change such as resistance, pain, and the high probability of failure. Infusing fun into a change process helps to create a positive environment for change that contributes to its success."
If you really want people to embrace change and get excited during the process add some fun factor. Take a look below to see what I mean.


So the next time you are faced with implementing the always challenging change process consider how you might positively influence behaviors, mindset, attitudes, and opinions through fun. This is not only an opportunity to be creative, but it can also go a long way towards building positive relationships with key stakeholders.  For some more specific ideas make sure you read the article by Lim and Conway titled Five Ways to Use Fun For  (a) Change. You might just have some fun yourself thinking about how you will help others embrace change in the future.

4 comments:

  1. Well put Eric!

    I believe here at Sagonaska Demonstration school we have successfully changed the mindset of learning. We work with students who deal with a severe communication LD every day. Through explicitly teaching the use of self advocacy skills, and assisstive technology we have turned these students into 21st century learners.

    The past school year was our most successful year yet! Data illustrates that students made the largest gains in the past 4 years. In my humble opinion, which also may be a bit biased, the progress is do to a mindshift among the teachers, administrator and learning team. We, the teachers, have worked along side the educational psychologist, residence councilors, the assistive technology teacher, IT personnel and the administrator to invoke change in these kids.

    It is truly amazing. Students come to us from all over Ontario, with the thought that they "can't learn". We change that because we make the mindshift from "non learner" to learner a fun experience!

    Check us out sagonaskaschool.blogspot.ca and mrdidonatosclass.blogspot.ca

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  2. Eric,

    Thank you for sharing! I'm a firm believer in infusing FUN into the workplace...how much more so when we have to embrace change or tackle difficult situations. They will always be there, but we can still have fun and find joy in our work as educators every day.

    Jon

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