It starts with one: changing individuals changes organisations

It has always been an interesting problem to solve – Do organizations change Top-down or Bottom’s up? What should be the focus of the Leadership is it to creating tight coupled framework for change or loosen up the change with a broader guideline and coach their 1st line managers as change agents.

An interesting book which deals with these problems by Hal Gregersen and Stewart Black – It starts with one: changing individuals changes organizations.

http://knowledge.insead.edu/video/index.cfm?cid=9&vid=75 

When I wrote the article on “Innovating at the Top” I was inclined to think that the changes are driven by putting in the structure and systems in place, and CEOs of the large global organization see themselves as championing the Innovation.

On the other hand this book provides an interesting perspective as it focuses on developing champions right at the point of action who can help develop individuals. The book insists on increased focus on understanding the need for change, how the individuals shall be groomed for change, and finally how the targeted individuals will perceive it. The book concludes on three inconvenient truths due to which the change initiatives fail-

1.     Failure to see the need for change

2.     Failure to move in the direction of change

3.     Failure to finish the change initiative

The book stresses on creating avenues and experiential learning environments so that people can appreciate the need for change and creating the champions at the grass roots who can act as motivators for the people to move in the right direction and complete it.

The two books “Innovating at the Top” and “It starts with one” provide a unique perspective to perceiving the Innovation and Change, as one of them focuses on the structure and processes from the CEO’s view point, while the other deals with issues faced to make the change a success.

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