Leading Change

What’s the first word you think of when someone says “change”? “Work,” “new,” “challenge,” “fun,” “opportunity,” “panic,” and “painful” were some of the participants’ answers in this workshop, facilitated by library consultant Maureen Sullivan. Sullivan led the audience through several exercises designed to determine their change style, perceptions of change, and level of comfort with change while sharing insights from current management literature.

Some of Sullivan’s guidelines for effective self-management of change:

1. Identify the changes you want, write them down, and create an action plan.

2. When you find yourself resisting change, ask yourself why, and continue asking until you identify a credible answer.

3. Associate with, and learn from, those who welcome change.

4. Learn to accept ambiguity and respond positively to uncertainty.

5. Adopt “learning as a way of being.” Be curious; see change as a discovery process that offers opportunities.

6. Identify threats and confront your fears.

7. Pay attention to what is going on around you; be alert to trends and developments in the external environment.

8. Technology is changing constantly; keep up with new developments.

9. Identify the new competencies you will need and develop them.

10. Focus on your strengths and ways that you can contribute to the success of any change effort.

11. Speak up. Offer your ideas and opinions. Disagree constructively.

12. Listen to understand.

13. Assume responsibility for your performance and for your own learning and development.

Recommended Reading:

Managing Transitions: Making the Most of Change by William Bridges
Transitions: Making Sense of Life’s Changes by William Bridges
The Heart of Change Field Guide: Tools and Tactics for Leading Change in Your Organization by Dan S. Cohen
Crazy Busy: Overstretched, Overbooked, and About to Snap by Edward M. Hallowell, M.D.
Our Iceberg is Melting by John Kotter
The Power of Full Engagement by Jim Loehr and Tony Schwartz
Becoming a Resonant Leader by Annie McKee et al.

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