A few weeks ago, the RE:INVENTION team decided to go on a diet for a few days. I don’t know how I got dragged into it, but before I knew it, I was eating an organic vegetarian dry dog food by Pet Guard instead of my usual brand. It wasn’t an easy adjustment, but now I’m one of the leanest pups at the dog park and I feel great, too! I’ll admit, the transition freaked me out a little bit and I’m slightly peeved that whoever fed me that day didn’t give me a warning. The last thing I was expecting was to take a bite of food from my dog bowl and taste something completely different. But the change was definitely worth it in the long run, so I decided I’d take a break from my morning yoga class to share a few tips about change management that helped me get through my dog food transition.
- Create a sense of urgency. Both Steve Jobs and change management expert John Kotter believe the secret to successful change management is a sense of urgency. My team created a sense of urgency for me — it was better to transition me to healthier dog food while I was a puppy rather than wait until I was more set in my ways. It’s harder, after all, to teach an older dog new tricks. Just remember that change happens more smoothly when you actively solicit feedback from team members before change occurs.
- Lean on your team. The RE:INVENTION team pulled together to stay motivated and ensure that change happened. I couldn’t have made it this far without the team effort. But each of us had to take ownership, too. For instance, eating healthy has inspired me to tone up. Change is a both a company journey and a personal one.
- Develop a purpose-driven vision and strategy. Ask yourself and (your team members), “what do we want to look like in a year or two years or three years?” My change vision: I want to look and feel like the best dog on the block.
- Focus on short-term wins. Take it step by step if you need to. Sniff it out. Chew one small bite at a time. I usually scarf down my meals, but the first one with this new dog food took a little getting used to for me, so I ate it very slowly. I learned to treat each bite as a small victory for me getting closer to steering away from my old ways.
Hungry for more change management tips? Watch this video featuring John Kotter.
Regardless of how scary change can seem at first, it can pay off in significant ways. I hope that this advice will help you undertake your next business transformation. Oh and hey, sometimes I’m the underdog at the dog park. If you haven’t heard, RE:INVENTION is honored to be a finalist for two 2013 iMedia Agency Awards. We’re a boutique firm that has been nominated along with some huge ones. If you’re like me and enjoy rooting for the underdog, vote for us.
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Have a “paw-some” day!
– Kane, K-9 Intern