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One constant is that everything changes. How we deal with change influences our day-to-day decisions. The Change Management training modules, in this section, will help bring a greater understanding of the benefits of change and how to deal with it.

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Bruce Tuckman's Forming, Storming, Norming and Performing Team Development Model

Article Overview:
In this article, Carol Wilson briefly examines a team development model that was created in 1965 and which remains relevant today.

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Article Overview:
In this article, Carol Wilson briefly examines a team development model that was created in 1965 and which remains relevant today.

Opening Words:
There has never been a time of greater conflict between members of newly formed teams than in today’s world of cyclonic corporate change, where relationships are made and changed through global mergers, demergers, portfolio careers, cost cutting redundancies and a widespread lack of ability in organisations to nurture and retain their home grown talent.

For some 40 years, Bruce Tuckman’s classic model has been delivering comfort and new perspectives to managers either charged with running a team, or trying to function within one, assuring the players that they are not alone and that the discomfort of conflict is a normal part of the journey towards an effective and enjoyable unit.

Suitable Reading For:
Anyone interested in understanding how team dynamics work and change and why teams perform in different ways at different times in their life cycle.

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Coaching, Mentoring and the Sibling Organisation

Article Overview:
This article from Mike Bagshaw, considers the changing business culture. He argues that the paternalistic approach has gone, replaced by a sibling stage in organisational development - a sort of half-way house to full alignment between individual and organisation needs.

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Article Overview:
This article from Mike Bagshaw, considers the changing business culture. He argues that the paternalistic approach has gone, replaced by a sibling stage in organisational development - a sort of half-way house to full alignment between individual and organisation needs.

Opening Words:
The sibling organisation is a stage in the development of organisations following the uncertainty created by downsizing and restructuring. People feel the need to invest in self-preservation, perhaps at the expense of collaborative effort, risk-taking and shared learning. Organisational defensive routines limit growth and creativity. Morale is depressed, job satisfaction is reduced and performance goes down. To counter this post-change depressive effect, a new contract of mutual investment and respect needs to be created between the employee and the organisation. A coaching style of management combined with independent mentoring support can provide the vehicle for a climate of two stranded development where both the needs of the individual and the needs of the organisation are aligned.

The concept of the sibling organisation is a new one. It's a stage of evolution in business ethos, and it seems to me it's the stage we're at now. We have moved past the old paternalistic ethos, where we were looked after in exchange for loyalty. That move has been forced on us by the changing market demands and shareholder power. The drive has been to cut costs. The highest cost is people, so it has been uneconomic for the bosses to go on looking after people. There has had to be downsizing. "Lean and Mean" has become the cry. All too soon that has meant "Sad and Mad".

Useful Reading For:
Anyone involved in coaching and mentoring.

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Culture - Help or Hindrance?

Article Overview:
Joe Espana explores the importance of organisational cultures, and their impact on all aspects of business life; especially change programmes. Joe looks at the difficulties in defining culture, and therefore identifying a 'right' culture, and asks ultimately how can we ensure the organisation's culture is having a positive impact?

About

Article Overview:
Joe Espana explores the importance of organisational cultures, and their impact on all aspects of business life; especially change programmes. Joe looks at the difficulties in defining culture, and therefore identifying a 'right' culture, and asks ultimately how can we ensure the organisation's culture is having a positive impact?

Opening Words:
There are a number of inter-related performance factors in a company's operating style/culture (the way things are done) that can significantly influence its organisational effectiveness. Poor execution caused by organisational issues is held responsible for over 50% of corporate failures to fully deliver business strategy.

Moreover, at least 60% of company mergers fail to realise their anticipated pre-acquisition values, and approximately 75% of all change programmes are unsuccessful. Why? Because organisational culture can secretly conspire against these efforts.

Useful Reading For:
Managers.

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Don't Make Me Go Back to the Gym

Article Overview:
In this article, Rod Webb wonders why he's not motivated to return to the gym after Christmas this year, and considers the lessons here for organisations and managers. The article outlines key thoughts and ideas about motivating people at work and managing change.

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Article Overview:
In this article, Rod Webb wonders why he's not motivated to return to the gym after Christmas this year, and considers the lessons here for organisations and managers. The article outlines key thoughts and ideas about motivating people at work and managing change.

Opening Words:
I had one of those moments this morning, which seem to come with increasing frequency once you reach your forties. The image in the bathroom mirror just seemed to be a little more out of shape than normal – the sagging more noticeable, the posture a little worse. On really bad days I see my father in the mirror. Nothing against my father, you understand, but when he was my age (and I wasn’t) I thought he looked old, whilst I of course know that I’m still very much in my youth.

Anyway, this unfortunate revelation got me thinking and wondering whether once again I should try and lose some of the post Christmas excess via lots of exercise at the gym.

I’ve tried the gym before – many, many times, without any discernible difference being achieved in the few weeks my commitment lasted before the excruciating boredom became unbearable and I was driven back to the sofa - and chocolate.

Useful Reading For:
Managers and team leaders who need to motivate others.

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Getting the Best from Changing Situations

Article Overview:
Martin Haworth's article provides ten simple tips for preparing for and dealing with change.

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Article Overview:
Martin Haworth's article provides ten simple tips for preparing for and dealing with change.

Opening Words:
It can be great to do something new 'for a change', when it's your choice. It's fun then. But when it comes up on you from out of the blue, when you're least expecting it, it's something very different. So, here are a few things you can do.

1. Accept how You Feel
How you feel is OK: Whoever is going through this change experience would feel the way you do, whether it is angry, sad, frustrated etc. All the emotions are acceptable. It is OK in the moment to feel the way you do.

2. Sleep on it
Avoid being hasty about anything - let it sink in. The better news will be tomorrow - after you have had time for it to stew a little. Your right brain will kick in - and then you can get creative!

Useful Reading For:
Everyone, as we all have to deal with change at some point.

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Help, I am the New HR Director. Now what?

Article Overview:
This excellent article from Joe Espana, considers the difficulties faced when someone is appointed to the role of HR Director. Joe argues that they have approximately 90 days in which to make an impact, and suggests different strategies for dealing with three different scenarios that might exist within the organisation.

About

Article Overview:
This excellent article from Joe Espana, considers the difficulties faced when someone is appointed to the role of HR Director. Joe argues that they have approximately 90 days in which to make an impact, and suggests different strategies for dealing with three different scenarios that might exist within the organisation.

Opening Words:
You've made it. What you always wanted to achieve; a senior HR role with a seemingly dynamic company, a CEO who gives every indication that he is on your side and will listen, and a real challenge that will allow you to make full use of your talents. And then the realisation of what you've taken on really hits. A friend of mine once describe getting his new HR Director role like this: His challenges felt at first like having to climb Mount Everest and being at base camp. Two months into the job he was beginning to realise that what he had taken on was definitely the summit of Mount Everest, but he now realised that far from being at base camp he was actually at Heathrow waiting for his delayed flight to Kathmandu - and, oh by the way, he'd forgotten to pack the oxygen needed for the climb.

The issue for many senior appointees in these sorts of circumstances is knowing exactly where to start. The requirements of an organisation in which everything seems important and urgent needs careful balancing. And on top of that, there is the added pressure of having to demonstrate value and contribution as soon as possible. By any measure, the new HR Director has approximately 90 days to show that he or she was a sound recruitment decision. The key issue, therefore, is to work out where the biggest return for effort exists.

Useful Reading For:
Management involved in HR.

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Keep Focused

Article Overview:
In this article Damian Hughes shares some tips and advice on how to keep focused when faced with a changing environment.

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Article Overview:
In this article Damian Hughes shares some tips and advice on how to keep focused when faced with a changing environment.

Opening Words:
If I asked you to describe how you feel about change, what would you say? Many people often come up with a mixture of negative and positive terms. On the one hand fear, anxiety, loss, danger and panic; on the other, exhilaration, risk-taking, excitement, improvements, energising. With a mix of emotions, keeping focused can be difficult during a period of change, and maintaining your best performance may become more of a challenge. The power of focus works on what I call ‘The Spice Girls Principle’.

The more you want and focus on something, the more of it you get. However, take a few moments to think about what actually happens to your focus when you are under the pressures of change.

Useful Reading For:
Everyone.

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Lean Thinking - What Is It?

Article Overview:
This provocative article from Italian-born Carlo Scodanibbio looks at the history of business since the industrial revolution and suggests that few of today's businesses are truly Lean; instead carrying the burden of principles that were developed for the 20th Century and which no longer apply. This one will really get you thinking and will provoke lots of discussion.

About

Article Overview:
This provocative article from Italian-born Carlo Scodanibbio looks at the history of business since the industrial revolution and suggests that few of today's businesses are truly Lean; instead carrying the burden of principles that were developed for the 20th Century and which no longer apply. This one will really get you thinking and will provoke lots of discussion.

Opening Words:
There is a problem in industry: We have gone into the 21st century with enterprises, organisations and business structures conceived and designed in the 18th and 19th centuries to perform well in the 20th.

The principles that gave origin to industry were conceived back in 1776, when the British economist Adam Smith published his famous book entitled "An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations". Considering that in those times there was practically no industry, some very excellent principles, conceived by a real genius, were laid out. Smith visualised that the future wealth of the world would be founded and based on industry. Smith also went a step further, engineering practical principles for the future would-be industry, including his famous principle of "Division of Labour" (the whole job to be sub-divided into a number of elementary tasks, each assigned to a dedicated, single-skill worker).

Useful Reading For:
Managers, including senior managers to board level, and anyone who wants to examine strategic thinking and customer focus at a high level.

Notes:
The author has confirmed that trainers can download this article and use it in their courses to provoke discussion and thought, as long as the 'about the author' bit remains intact.

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Obama's Magic

Article Overview:
In this article, Martin Shovel considers Barrack Obama's success as an orator and the impact they had in the run up to his election.

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Article Overview:
In this article, Martin Shovel considers Barrack Obama's success as an orator and the impact they had in the run up to his election.

Opening Words:
There is one supreme gift that marks out truly great speakers from the rest: it’s an unerring ability to make us care about what they’re saying, whatever the topic. Up to now, Barack Obama’s greatest achievement has been to make the people of America care about politics. Armed only with words, he has miraculously transformed the vast desert of political disaffection into a fertile plain where the litter of broken dreams has been replaced by seeds of hope.

Obama’s words have cast their spell in a series of stirring campaign speeches; speeches that have excited and inspired people around the globe. But what is it that makes these speeches so special? And is it possible to begin to understand how they work their magic?

Useful Reading For:
Anyone who wants to improve their presentation skills or their ability to influence others through words.

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The Home Improver - Understanding Kaizen

Article Overview:
In this interesting article, Carlo Scodanibbio explains the concept of Kaizen, the process of continuous improvement that originated in Japan.

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Article Overview:
In this interesting article, Carlo Scodanibbio explains the concept of Kaizen, the process of continuous improvement that originated in Japan.

Opening Words:
If you consider your house more than just a shelter and a place in which you eat and sleep, in other words if you consider your house a "home", a cosy, warm nest for you and your family, you will probably take great care of it and will gladly dedicate time, effort and money to making it even warmer, cosier, more functional and better looking. You will not just maintain it in its present state but you will try to render it better and better. You will renew plumbing and electrics in due time, paint or polish doors and windows regularly, add new pieces of furniture or replace some unsuited ones. You will shop around to find some nice pieces of soft furnishing, or wall pictures, or antiques. You will place flowerpots and ornamental plants here and there. If you really love your home, this will be an endless process.

The process you are following with your house is a Kaizen process. The Japanese word Kaizen means "step-by-step, continuous improvement”.

Useful Reading For:
Managers and those responsible for continuous improvement.

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Unconventional Wisdom

Article Overview:
In this article, Martin Shovel asks the reader to be prepared to challenge conventional wisdom, and to look for creative opportunities when there is a mismatch between what we've always done and the results we're getting.

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Article Overview:
In this article, Martin Shovel asks the reader to be prepared to challenge conventional wisdom, and to look for creative opportunities when there is a mismatch between what we've always done and the results we're getting.

Opening Words:
Ask a random selection of colleagues if they like PowerPoint presentations, and what do you think they’ll say? Chances are they’ll give you the thumbs down. But do they use PowerPoint themselves? The answer is probably ‘yes’.

Let’s be clear about this – they don’t like being on the receiving end of PowerPoint presentations but they use them themselves. Isn’t this somewhat odd and inconsistent? True, there’s nothing intrinsically bad about PowerPoint, but the way most people use it has turned it into the grey suit of business communications; ubiquitous, boring and predictable.

Useful Reading For:
Anyone looking to overcome 'conventional wisdom'.

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Vital Leadership in the Twenty-First Century

Article Overview:
To succeed in today’s world, Mike and Caroline Baghsaw argue that an organisation has to become a complex adaptive system, operating through core principles that nurture flexibility and innovation.

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Article Overview:
To succeed in today’s world, Mike and Caroline Baghsaw argue that an organisation has to become a complex adaptive system, operating through core principles that nurture flexibility and innovation.

Opening Words:
At the dawn of the twentieth century, most organisations relied on large numbers of people working together in the same building. The young started at the bottom, and the most able would, with experience, become the leaders. It worked well in the context of stable technology. The bosses could predict future needs well enough to make quite detailed plans, including the duties of employees. These could be structured into career ladders, plus a pension, to reward good workers. "Good" meant co-operative. They didn't want bright ideas from low down the ladder. The boss looked after good workers, and the workers obeyed the bosses.

At the dawn of the twenty-first century, all this has metamorphosed. Constant innovation makes experience, not irrelevant, but in need of constant adjustment. The good workers are no longer the quiet, co-operative ones, but those who look ahead, spot what's coming, and adapt. This applies to organisations as well as individuals. The static ones will be left behind. To succeed, an organisation has to become a complex adaptive system, operating through core principles that nurture flexibility and innovation.

Useful Reading For:
Managers and trainers.

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When Change Really Hurts

Article Overview:
In this article, Sheila Williams looks at how we feel when faced with imposed change and suggests five ways for helping us work through such changes.

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Article Overview:
In this article, Sheila Williams looks at how we feel when faced with imposed change and suggests five ways for helping us work through such changes.

Opening Words:
When imposed change – change we have not chosen ourselves – hits us, it can really hurt. We often experience feelings of loss, hopelessness, being powerless, worried that we can’t count on anything and overwhelmed by the need to adapt to new demands.

The Change Curve is a model that illustrates the emotional stages we may go through when experiencing this type of change and not only helps us to make sense of our emotions but allows us to recognise that what we are feeling is entirely normal.

Useful Reading For:
Anyone responsible for managing change or faced with change.

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