Developing a change mindset strategy begins with your own attitudes, behaviors and habits. After all, Change is a Big Idea.
First, you have a nagging sense you can be doing better, professionally. So, you discover a different way of looking at things. Next, you start paying more attention to the attitudes, behaviors and habits of workplace colleagues. What happens if they begin to do things, ever so slightly differently, together on behalf of customers?
Then, you discover it is impossible to go back to your prior mindset. The singular shift in your own perspective changes how you are professionally hard-wired, moving forward. You move one millimeter outside your current professional comfort level. Now, you cannot wait to get the rest of your colleagues on board!
Except, the rest of your colleagues are not receptive to your change mindset strategy, are they?
In fact, they are very comfortable within their own professional perspective, habits and behaviors. They were trained to think the way they think. You realize they are permanently hard-wired to think that way. Why should they expand their professional bandwidth to include your new perspective?
After all, everyone is quite successful with Yesterday’s mindset, not your proposed “new” mindset and strategy.
As a result, colleagues do not roll out the red carpet when you introduce your revelations to them. In fact, they are dismissive instead of supportive. Discouraging instead of encouraging. That does not stop you, does it?
Introducing a change mindset strategy focuses on possibilities and opportunities to innovate.
I strongly feel that, depending on where we sit around the table, we see the same things differently. Shouldn’t our similarities and differences become opportunities to innovate and differentiate, instead of impediments to collaborate? ~ Babette Ten Haken
Take a walk around the table, to “their” side. The term, “Change” with a capital “C,” in itself, has a lot of baggage associated with it. From leadership’s perspective, they think you are talking change management, and are biased to unconditionally accepting new systems and rules to be imposed on them. In reality, change mindset introduces a holistic, collaborative approach to working cross-functionally. Do they know the difference?
Then again, consider that any initiative with “Change” in the title is synonymous with Innovation, from their perspective. Who, within your organization, is permitted to innovate? Just Them? Just You? Or both of you, together?
And, that is an important point to make, when discussing your new perspective to colleagues. Especially, those colleagues who are operate in professional disciplines which traditionally do not collaborate well across departmental lines. Let’s say STEM and business, for example.
Yes, professional innovation is professionally uncomfortable.
Client outcomes can become far more profitable. However, teams must regularly wander outside the lines of departmental mindset and professional disciplines, which keep them fractured and compartmentalized.
Are you making it too easy for leadership to hunker down in risk-based thinking? Are they confusing your change mindset with change management?
If you want to move forward from what is holding you and your colleagues back, change mindset starts as a project, so it is not confused as an organizational initiative. Yet.
Consider that you may be using Yesterday’s systems and protocols to introduce your innovative ideas. So, you remain stuck in Today’s protocols, even though you simultaneously think light years beyond it. Proposed Change remains a Big Idea that requires cross-functional collaboration to bring it to fruition.
Take the next steps towards professional innovation:
- Read these related posts on professional innovation, workforce engagement and customer retention.
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Babette Ten Haken, Founder & President of One Millimeter Mindset™ serves organizations as a corporate catalyst and innovative speaker, strategist, coach and storyteller. Babette’s One Millimeter Mindset™ Workshops and Speaking programs leverage collaboration to catalyze professional innovation, workforce engagement and customer retention, especially in challenging Industrial Internet of Things environments. Babette’s playbook of IIoT team collaboration hacks, Do YOU Mean Business? is available on Amazon. She is a member of SME, ASQ, SHRM and the National Speakers Association.