Being an Effective Change Manager

As Heraclitus, a Greek philosopher, once said (updated with current protocol), “No person steps in the same river twice, for it’s not the same river and they’re not the same person

So, it would stand to reason that, if the only constant in life is change, then we are all, in fact, the change manager of our own life, both personally and professionally.

Why then, does the role of a Change Manager exist?

Similar to a personal trainer, financial advisor or guidance counsellor, during times of significant change, an experienced and qualified change manager can provide people with the required support, within each step of the process, to make effective choices and ensure a smooth transition.

Given there are different circumstances and types of change, the role of a Change Manager can take on many forms and the will depend on the findings of, what I term, the Third ‘I’ Review©:

  • Intention: accepting change is occurring and being real about the mental state that represents a commitment to carrying out an action or actions in the future. It involves mental activities such as strategy, planning and forethought and requires identification of desired outcomes.
  • Insight & Intuition: gaining an understanding of the impact of change; the cause and effect based on relationships and behaviours within a model, context, or scenario. It is the power of a piece of information, acute observation and deduction, introspection, discernment, and perception.
  • Identification: ability to define the change, the core good or service being produced and supplied, as well as distinguishing between an individual and/or a organisational change that will determine the appropriate change management frameworks, tools and techniques to apply; a change within health care would be different to one in information technology, as would a change to physical well-being compared to a change in the way we work.

Regardless of the result of the Third ‘I’ Review©, here are my top 3 tips for being an effective Change Manager:

  1. Realise it’s not a one-person role (or the role of one team);

An effective Change Manager has the ability to partner, influence and build lasting relationships with people within the community. In the context of business, change management would be architected by change management professionals but is developed with, and executed by, many players across all levels of the organisation; from top-level executives to front line supervisors and includes specialists from human resources and organisational development, impacted employees and designated resources.

  1. Recognise the meaning behind the change

There is always a reason for the change. The more a Change Manager can assist in identifying, clarifying and specifying the reason, the more likely it is that people will understand the need to change, develop a desire and willingness to change and be open to connecting with others around a common purpose or collective vision that will bring the change to fruition.

  1. Know it’s more than just a process

While there are a number of proven Change Management approaches and methodologies that outline a set of steps to follow, these need to be continuously tailored in line with the Third ‘I’ Review©, current trends and innovative practices, including customer experience, design thinking, value management and business agility. Not to mention that a Change Manager deals with the people side of change – and people bring with them a constant challenge of uncertainty and complexity.

When it comes to change, you are, without a doubt, your own Change Manager. You can either go it alone or you can seek the guidance and support of an experienced and professional practitioner, someone who can support and guide you in the direction you seek – it’s up to you!

Courtney ‘Co-Creator’ Wilson

m: +61 (0)417 107 888| e: courtney.connect@outlook.com

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Community-based protocol in Business

On a recent trip to Hawaii I became part of a new, diverse community; one that bonded over a shared interest and experience – the Molokai Hula Bliss and Huaka’i 2018.

It got me thinking…What makes a community? Why is community important? How can business benefit from community-based protocol?

What makes a community?

A community is built on relationships and can naturally form from one or many of the following ways:

  • Shared location – a city, a neighbourhood, a country e.g. I was born in Adelaide
  • Shared attribute – “I am _____” e.g. I am female or I am vegetarian
  • Shared lineage – birth, marriage or choice e.g. I am Australian, Scottish and German
  • Shared interest or passion -“I like _____” e.g. I like dancing or I like travelling
  • Shared action or practice – “”I do ______” e.g. I participate in social change conversations or I practice Change Management

But what makes a community?

In my experience, it’s commitment; and the level of commitment to sharing and to one another is what determines the strength and impact of that community.

In Hawaii, we made a commitment to not only learn but experience the traditional Hawaiian teachings and Aloha way of life and, in turn, we learnt about ourselves and each other.

Why is community important?

A community provides an opportunity for people to connect and belong. It’s also the mechanism for creating social norms. A community of action or practice, with a high level of commitment, even has the ability to develop self-managing and sustainable systems that enable us to keep working together towards a collective vision or goal.

In Hawaii, I connected with people from around Australia and the world. We developed a sense of belonging through a shared experience “We’ll always have Molokai!”.

At the beginning, we were given a set of simple rules – e.g. be on time. Throughout our experience, however, a set of social norms also started to develop, sourced from our own personal culture and from the teachings we were rediscovering. What I came to know, through this (and past) experience, was the importance of the following principles:

  • Invitation and Consent – from inviting someone into our personal head or heart space to inviting someone onto the land, our home or office. Upon entering, the act of checking in and asking for agreement; which in Hawaii could mean a specific chant or hymn. And upon leaving, giving thanks. Always showing respect for ourselves, one another and our surroundings.
  • Responsibility and Trust – taking ownership of our own contribution, actions, reactions and responses. It’s about creating a safe and secure environment, being reliable, keeping each other accountable and considering the needs of the group; knowing when it’s time to fill up our own cup so that it’s over flowing and we are able to contribute for the benefit of others.
  • Nature and Nurture – understanding the nature within us and the nature that surrounds us. Demonstrating care and compassion to what is and how this can grow or be destroyed – dependent upon our thoughts and actions and our ability to balance the needs of the people and the sustainability of natural resources.

As a group, we operated by a roster system that outlined what needed to be done, when and by who. The lesson here was to let go of control, remain flexible and trust the natural order of things to emerge and evolve. Inevitably circumstances and challenges present themselves that forces a change, and when you are in it together, committed, and following these three principles, emergence takes place and transformation occurs.

How can business benefit from community-based protocol?

A community has the power to

  • Cultivate respect and team effectiveness
  • Encourage contribution and participation, without force or control
  • Inspire ideas and innovation, without self-orientation
  • Support one another through challenging times and share the success

In business, we can benefit from community-based protocol. We are a community, after all! And it’s the elements of a community that I consider when applying the Triple S Planning© model:

  • Strategy – a focus point established by a shared or collective purpose, vision or goal
  • Synergy – the level of cohesive interaction created from social norms, values and principles
  • Systems – flexible and new ways of working developed by one another with one another

 

The essential catalyst being commitment – to the collective and for the greater good.

Close your eyes and imagine a community you know. What is the commonality? Is it a good feeling with a sense of safety and strength? Or does it give you a cold sense of uncertainty? What are the guiding principles? How do you work together? What is the level of commitment?

Consider these elements and go forth to strengthen your community or your tribe – it’s what we were born to do….

Courtney ‘Co-Creator’ Wilson

m: +61 (0)417 107 888| e: courtney.connect@outlook.com

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It all started with a Bang!

Wow! What a month…. I performed for the first time at the Sydney Latin Festival with a team of amazing Zouk dancers AND launched my business, Cultivate Connections, with the first ever CC Event. Talk about start the New Year off with a bang! 2015 is definitely the year for no holding back!!

The launch of CC Events was terrifying and amazing all at the same time. It was a long time coming and a journey like no other. I was so grateful people aligned with my passion and vision and showed up, not to mention provided so much positive feedback, more than I could have hoped for. The morning brought Leaders, Influencers and Visionaries, from an array of backgrounds, together in one room. It was an opportunity for us to meet, connect, share knowledge and build relationship.

The context was Teamwork centred on the Circle of Collaboration. It is my dream that together we embrace, define, develop and innovate around the Circle of Collaboration – co-creating a brighter future for ourselves and those to come. 20 years ago Health and Well-Being was merely a concept, now it’s a way of life. Imagine a world where we know to be true and are living and doing business aligned with all the petals of the Circle of Collaboration….

Thought provoking and controversial conversations arose around the following petals of the circle: Causes and Community, Social and Spiritual (now Social and Sustainability), Professional and Personal and Profit and People (now Public & Policy). The word Spiritual in particular was at first, by some, difficult to relate to but then once any preconceived ideas about religion was set aside, the true meaning of the word emerged and people could relate to their eternal spirit within. It was a joy to witness, to participate in and to contribute towards. The energy of the room certainly took on its name ‘Thinking Space’ – it couldn’t have been more aligned if I tried! I really look forward to seeing where the events, connections and conversations lead the community as the year continues….

What do the petals of the Circle of Collaboration mean to you?

The next event will be held on Friday morning 27th February and I’m calling out to all Leaders, Influencers, Visionaries or Collaborators who want to connect, team up and help grow a new humanity. The conversations with continue and further connections will be made as we explore the Circle of Collaboration and the benefits of Creative Collaboration and Synergy.

Register and book your seat now via Eventbrite and contribute towards a brighter future https://cultivateconnetions.eventbrite.com.au

I hope to see you there!

Courtney ‘C0-Creator’ Wilson

m: +61 (0)417 107 888e: courtney.connect@outlook.com

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Living in the Moment

It has become quite obvious to me recently that I have lived most of my life in my head, most likely due to my analytical nature and conscientious mind; preplanning, organising and calculating what I “should” do next for the “best” outcome. I dwell on the past, worry about the future and fantasise about being on holiday. I get so caught up in the expectations of life, people and situations I have the tendency to seldom just go with the flow. My ‘monkey mind’ usually equates to being preoccupied with thinking I have to do something to make things happen and then when I do act, I’m left feeling guilty and full of regret. In business, and in my personal life, this tendency to jump from tree to tree can appear forced and controlled and contributes to high levels of indecisiveness, stress and anxiety, not just for me but for everyone involved.

Every now and then, however, I remember to relax and experience life; usually when I’m looking at something breathtaking, doing something that I really enjoy or experiencing a moment that touches my heart. It’s in these moments, I let go of thought, I feel alive, connected and my life becomes effortless. I allow life to unfold and act only when inspired to do so and when I do act I’m not attached to any specific outcome. Life becomes peaceful and uncomplicated.

So I ask myself, what can I do to balance the scales so my life is constantly in the flow, effortless and peaceful?

And the answer is simple; live in the moment by being mindful and connected.

I remember to observe my thoughts that come and go, without judgement, and at the same time have the courage to connect to everyone and everything that presents itself, especially the smaller things in life. Most importantly, I let go of all expectations and have faith. I offer life, people and every situation my full attention so that when I act, I trust it. Who knows, it may not turn out the way I expected but something else just might transpire instead.

I realise practice makes perfect; that every day is a new day and I’m gentle on myself. With each day, I start again and observe my thoughts, knowing that some days may be harder than others. I cultivate a connection with something I enjoy; walking along the beach, watching the sunrise or sunset, listening to music or dancing to a tune and then expand this to all experiences in life. When it comes to building relationships, both professionally and personally, I have the courage to look people in the eye and practice being present by allowing the situation to unfold without judgement or expectation. It can lead to extraordinary things or at the very least it lends itself to an authentic and stress free and peaceful experience.

I recognise that when I am mindful and connected, I trust life and life trusts me.

“As soon as you trust yourself, you will know how to live”. Goethe

So take a deep breath, relax and start humming this song ….

 

I leave you with one thought to think each day “Are you living in the moment”?

Courtney ‘Co-Creator’ Wilson

m: +61 (0)417 107 888e: courtney.connect@outlook.com

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Competition vs Collaboration

Recently in the workplace, and in life, I have been exploring the concept of competition and collaboration. What I have observed is a significantly higher tendency towards competitive behaviour as opposed to collaborative efforts. This left me asking the question why? Is competition really good for business or is it simply a ‘traditional’ way of operating that requires some much needed attention and re-direction?

According to Wikipedia, “Competition occurs naturally between living organisms which co-exist in the same environment. Competition, in biology, ecology, and sociology is a contest between organisms, animals, individuals and groups for territory, a niche, for resources and goods, mates, for prestige, recognition, awards, social status, for leadership. Competition is the opposite of cooperation. It arises whenever at least two parties strive for a goal which cannot be shared or which is desired individually but not in sharing and cooperation”.

In short, we are all born with a natural instinct to compete, but again is this really good for business or life in general? And can we change our habitual nature with emotional intelligence?

“The primary belief that drives competition is that it helps the crème rise to the top, it drives excellence!”

If I think back to my childhood at school, I can see where the idea of ‘excellence’ started with grades, exams, assignments and contests. If you were caught sharing knowledge or collaborating with others, say during an exam or an assignment, this was considered cheating! We were taught from a very young age to compete with one another and to take pride in being the top of the class. And the only way to get there was to know it all…yourself.

Therefore, it’s clear our education has encouraged our natural instinct to compete but again does this really work in life in general? Competition is completely the opposite to most of the aims of building communities, whether as teams, organisations or families. And isn’t this the main driver behind life in general … to build communities?

So while I agree that “competition can help promote curiosity as we see in all the extraordinary innovations in the business, scientific, sport and academic worlds, if unchecked it can also drive a close minded, un-sharing mindset where the focus shifts to defensiveness and protecting what we have”.

What is collaboration?

Collaboration is working with each other to do a task and to achieve shared goals. At the conceptual level, it involves Awareness, Motivation, Participation, Negotiation, Exchange, Reflection and Engagement. Now doesn’t that just feel better!

The aim of collaboration is to produce synergy and coherence, or in other words, cooperation and unity; outcomes that are only possible by working with others. Effective collaboration, however, is hard to achieve, because various businesses, teams and people have different aims, traditions and styles of working. Overcoming differences to create productive collaboration is a key challenge and you can only do this by realising you don’t have all the answers and you don’t need to know it all. As an alternative you recognise the gifts and talents each team player brings and respect that each person has an important part to play in achieving the task at hand or the shared goal. To relate it back to exams, it’s redefining the word cheating into a belief that cheating is in actual fact the act of not sharing! If someone asked you what you thought about a particular question on the exam and you didn’t share your thoughts this would be labelled cheating! Imagine what this belief would create in our society….

So my conclusion is this ….a touch of competition is healthy and can keep us striving towards new discoveries and innovations, yet as they say “two heads are better than one”. And in the sports industry, well, there can only be one winner. However, when it comes to business and life in general, and the type of people you want to work with, be led by and surround yourself with, the world needs more collaboration and team work and less competition and conflict.

So what can you do today to be a better team player?

Courtney ‘Co-Creator’ Wilson

m: +61 (0)417 107 888e: courtney.connect@outlook.com

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Hello!

Hi & Welcome to my blog,

It is my soul’s purpose to Cultivate Connection and Build Relationship through CREATIVITY, COMMUNICATION and EDUCATION.

BUILDING RELATIONSHIP = identifying the true value of individuals and organisations in order to cultivate and nurture quality relationships that will establish a coherent and unified humanity and the creation of better solutions for the future.

CREATIVITY = demonstrating the importance of creativity to design life with purpose and support personal creative ability, an essential ingredient to coherent collaboration.

COMMUNICATION = A new way to communicate to bring individuals and/or organisations together, that are aligned in vision, to promote trust, collective determination and achieve unity of effort through sharing knowledge and building consensus.

EDUCATION = providing a safe environment that supports everyone to be informed, do their best thinking and practice and enable group members to better understand coherence, collaboration and co-creation.

Let’s Create, Communicate and Educate together….

Courtney ‘Co-Creator’ Wilson

m: +61 (0)417 107 888e: courtney.connect@outlook.com

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