Implementation

Collaborative problem solving with affinity diagrams

Not many people seem to know what an affinity diagram is, but most project teams seem to have used them. So maybe I am using the wrong term for the process of "writing ideas on a post-it note and then whacking them up on a wall". In my defence though, most seem to have mixed… Continue reading Collaborative problem solving with affinity diagrams

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Capability growth · Courses · Idea management · Products

A course on change management in the real world

I spend a lot of time training teams in new approaches like agile development, but most of this training is about new techniques themselves rather than the process of managing the adoption and acceptance of those techniques. I also spend a lot of time coaching project managers in how to run more effective projects, but… Continue reading A course on change management in the real world

Decisions · Idea management · Leading change · Reflection

Would you hire a project manager to plant a tree?

Many great ideas fall on deaf ears. So organisations bring in project managers to make sure we implement good ideas properly. Good project managers define and clarify the idea, break the idea into features and then deploy the features into production. But quite often, people just don’t make use of the shiny new features they… Continue reading Would you hire a project manager to plant a tree?

Implementation · Investigation · Leading change

Understanding the background to power in a group

To really understand any team, it is important to understand the distribution of power within the group and how that power is exercised. Similarly, in order to understand the challenges of implementing change in a group, it is useful to understand what impact that change will have on the power within the group. Some of… Continue reading Understanding the background to power in a group

Observations

Power, politics and readiness for change

Early in my career, I was told that “middle management” are often the main obstacle to progress in an organisation. The middle managers, so the theory goes, see every change as either a threat to their hard-won business empire (resulting in less staff, less authority, a loss in status etc) or a chance to use… Continue reading Power, politics and readiness for change

Implementation · Leading change

Assessing a team’s readiness to adopt agile practices over coffee

I just finished an article on assessing the likelihood that a team will successfully adopt a change, such as a new process.  So this arrtice provides an example of how the approach I discussed might work in practice. Lets say that my client, Jenny, wants to implement “Agile practices” in her organisation.  So she buys offers me… Continue reading Assessing a team’s readiness to adopt agile practices over coffee

Implementation · Leading change

Rating a team’s readiness for change

I have just written a couple of articles about understanding a team’s existing world. But how does that relate to the likelihood of a new initiative being adopted? How do we actually know if a particular group will accept, adopt and sustain a new way of working? And what can we do to increase the… Continue reading Rating a team’s readiness for change

Consulting · Investigation · Leading change · Techniques

The 7-S framework (+2) for evaluating change readiness

I recently explained the “Arenas of Change”  approach that I often use to understand a team and its environment. So I thought it might be a good time to discuss another approach that I often use - the 7-S framework developed by McKinsey Consulting. For a proper explanation of the approach and its use and background, it… Continue reading The 7-S framework (+2) for evaluating change readiness

Idea management · Implementation · Investigation · Leading change

The Arenas of Change for assessing change readiness

To communicate effectively, you should align your message to your audience. And to drive effective change, you should align your change to the drivers and constraints faced by those you are planning to impact. But, as I discuss in a long-winded recent article, that is easier said than done. And unfortunately my solution here is… Continue reading The Arenas of Change for assessing change readiness

Idea management · Implementation

Is change hard because people are stupid?

When I first got involved in projects, I used to get frustrated that people so often did the opposite of what was needed. We would roll out a new tool, and they would go back to manual processing; we would roll out a new process, and they would go back to making errors and causing… Continue reading Is change hard because people are stupid?