32We always strive for experiencing something other than the ordinary. Eat in the newly opened restaurant. Go to a new place for the next summer vacation. Read the most recent book. Have the state-of-the-art mobile phone. Watch the latest movie. Purchase the cutting edge laptop. Try a new cookie recipe. Buy new season collection shoes (or just new shoes, different than those we already have... and rarely wear).
So why not to adopt a new goal? New idea? New approach?
People are not afraid of change! They love it! A big portion of divorces and job changes comes about just because of this appetite for different interpersonal and career experiences. And there is a whole fashion industry scaling up on the pursuit of the ultimate novelty.
So please, let's stop labeling people being resistant to change. It's not about change itself. It's about what it comes to offer. It's about uncertainty, limited visibility on positives, losing what's important and what we trust now... But if this offer makes a difference and promises experience of something more than average, a positive, important and trustworthy alternative, then we are always ready to adopt it in an instant.
In the corporate world (and personal life as well) we often justify the urgency for change with the need to fix something which is broken. But a vision for change should go way beyond that, to how future will be different from the past. A future-oriented vision acts as an action enzyme. And leaders are possibility thinkers. They are able to envision possibilities, finding a common purpose and crafting a shared vision that taps on personal aspirations of followers such as strive for success and achievement, sense of belonging and identification with something significant, meaningful and unique. It's their challenge to identify what's in it for their team to break new grounds. People have an emotional GPS about what's remarkable, challenging and noble. We want to see ourselves in that picture of the future that the leader is painting, and embrace the fact that this is our work too.
John Kotter highlights six key characteristics of effective visions:
· Imaginable: They convey a clear picture of what the future will look like.
· Desirable: They appeal to the long-term interest of those who have a stake in the enterprise.
· Feasible: They contain realistic and attainable goals.
· Focused: They are clear enough to provide guidance in decision making.
· Flexible: They allow individual initiative and alternative responses in light of changing conditions.
· Communicable: They are easy to communicate and can be explained quickly.
Cognitive psychologists have proved the human brain to be hardwired to make choices based on analyzing alternatives. Fair enough, just give us a consistent, authentic and inspiring image of the future as an alternative of the sub-optimal "now", and then watch us embracing change with willingness and commitment, seeing the whole effort as a path to success.
Best regards,

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