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"I Don't Know How to Talk to You Now": Why Change Efforts Fail (and How to Succeed)

Steve Kerr, prior head of leadership development for GE (renowned thought leader in this field) once said,

Family therapists agree.

I was reminded of it yet again by a client who has done tremendous work to improve his communication and leadership approach... only to be met with resistance.

One person even said to him,

The value of transparency and fierce conversations, eh?

We get used to the status quo.

We become comfortable not having to look at our own contributions to problems.

Even if we don't like 'what is', we learn how to work with it and it beats the unknown of 'what might be'.

For these reasons and a dozen others, the system - the environment -almost always wins.

The recent conversation I had with this client was also a reminder that it is incumbent on us to help those we mentor and coach to be agents of change for their environment and their teams... to help plant the seeds needed for forward movement and growth for everyone; to bring the group along, not just the individual.

At the end of the day we need to bring other voices into the room to join in our change efforts.


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