How To Change Something You Don't Like

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Are you frustrated with the direction of a current plan or program? Do you have a healthy sense of discontent about the outcome of a current path or direction? If so, it may be time for change. If you are thinking about leading change in the near future you may want to consider the following actions to help you achieve your goal.

1. Cast Your VISION
Most people who set out to lead change understand this step. I just want us to think differently about it. If your goal is to have 100 people attend your next event why not change your thinking? To do this simply add a zero to the end of your number. Planning an even for 100 is much different than 1000 and it will cause you to at least rethink your vision and possibly expand it. Be bold!

2. Unite Your TEAM
You can’t lead change with one charismatic personality. Sure, a charismatic personality can spark a change but without any fuel nothing will be accomplished. A united team with like minded personalities is what it takes to really accomplish change. I can't begin to tell you what one short-sighted team member can do to the change process. The following story, an urban legend, tells us the perils of people going in the opposite directions.

On March 2, 1944, Train 8017 departed from Salerno, Italy.  A few hours after Train 8017 left Salerno, it brought death to more people than perhaps any other train wreck in history. Yet, it wasn't derailed, burned or damaged in any way.

Shortly after 1:00 AM, the heavy train with 600 passengers lumbered into the Italian tunnel called Calleria delle Armi.  Precisely what went wrong inside the tunnel no one knows for sure.  The one certain fact is that when the two locomotives pulling the train reached mid-tunnel, the drive wheels began to slip.  The wheels lost traction and the train stopped.

All else is speculation, for both engineers died at the controls. Carbon monoxide snuffed out the lives of nearly 500 passengers.

Ironically, when authorities began clearing the bodies, they found the leading locomotive unbraked with its controls set in reverse.  The second locomotive was unbraked with its throttle set full ahead.

Apparently, when the train stopped the two engineers had fatally different ideas of what to do.  They were pulling and pushing against each other.  Some have speculated that no lives would have been lost if the engineers had both been clear in the direction they were going.

3. Decide Your STRATEGY
You have cast a vision and you have a united team, now what? It’s time to get moving! Most visionaries stop at step two when real change takes place here, at step three. Strategy is the plan, the blue prints to the building. Strategy involves systems, structure and process. Do you have a plan beyond your vision? Here are five questions you can ask yourself to get thinking strategically.

What is my end result? (Outcome)
Who is helping me? (Team)
When will I start? (Time)
Where is the biggest challenge? (Risk)
Why am I doing this? (Reason)

How! The biggest question of all. I will address this in the next post as we talk about the 10 steps you need to take in order to lead change.

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