What does “failure” look like?

I talk a lot about the need to define success. (And it is a need, not just a nice-to-have or a default to “but everyone knows what it means”; read more here and here; links open in new tabs, so you won’t lose your place.) But we also need to define failure. We do a lot to avoid failure – but – do …

Comfy? You’re doing it wrong.

Change is uncomfortable. Full stop, end of statement. Whether it’s operational change (implementing new software, for instance) or cultural change (such as a diversity initiative), you’re being challenged to do things differently. Which means you’re being challenged to think differently. And that’s uncomfortable. We generally get it with operational change. We know we’re learning to use a new tool, or working …

Is there really a Great Resignation?

Yes, I think so. People have been arguing with me about this, but the data don’t lie. (Yes, I insist on “data” being plural, thank you.) The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that April and May, 2021, had the highest “quit rate” EVER. As in, never before this high. As in, really, really high. Look, I get the impulse to …

So what the *^?@ is “culture,” anyway?

Every company has a culture – a personality, if you will. In fact, in larger companies each department or division also has its own sub-culture, which can sometimes be quite different from that of the company as a whole, or that of other departments. If you’ve ever envied a colleague because they worked in a department known for its supportive …

What’s the cork in the bottle?

There’s something you want to do. But you’re not doing it. (How do I know? Because we all have that in our careers and lives!) It might even have become a source of serious – or at least mild – frustration. Why aren’t you doing it? Let’s ask a few questions. And bear in mind: this is relevant to anything in …

Is change hard?

There are many reasons why change feels hard. The unknown is scary We’ve all seen (and probably experienced) how easy it is to stay in uncomfortable – and even painful and dangerous – situations because they’re known and familiar. As poet and author Anais Nin famously said, And the day came when the risk it took to remain tight inside the …

What people *say* isn’t what they *do*!

I’m presenting – virtually, of course – at the OHIMA conference this week. Subject: Change Leadership. The conference organizers asked the speakers for some pre-session warmup questions about our topic. This is what I sent: When I’m asked to lead change, I… My favorite ways to resist change are… Being required to change makes me feel… I’m fascinated by the …

Change leadership? Who cares?

It’s odd to me that change leadership is so often overlooked when companies embark on a big strategic change. The focus is typically on change management – which is primarily about project management: how we get from here to there, planning, resource allocation, task assignments, status tracking, and so on. A big strategic change initiative may have multiple projects, of course, but …

Change and loss aversion

Why do we want to create change? Based on our actions (hello, New Year’s resolutions!), we think we want to change more than we actually do change. And the same is often true of organizational change initiatives, as illustrated by the sad statistic that 70% of change initiatives either fail outright, or aren’t sustained over time. That’s a really sad statistic, especially when …

Leading through Uncertainty: a call to action

What does it mean to be a manager and leader in a time when everything seems to be turned upside down? Are you ready to take on the challenge? This isn’t an easy time for anyone, especially the first-line manager. I offer three key questions to help you decide what you’ll do. The choice is yours. Are you ready? Resources …