Leading Change Within Our Organization

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Creating change is more than just changing someone’s mind. It requires a plan and purpose that targets changing people’s behaviors. When I start with heart, my colleagues are able to see that this innovation plan is more than just a project. I care deeply about my students' education, especially in kindergarten, because having a wholesome, solid foundation will ground them into what is truly important. 

Through the duration of my implementation, I will stay true to my why, how and what statements. People buy your why. My why allows students opportunities to shape themselves into powerful young human beings. They deserve to be the CEO of their own learning. Age is just a number. Whether they are five or twenty-five, students can flourish in an environment that provides them real-world experiences. Keeping these statements in the forefront will always keep my initiative and organization moving in the right direction. 

Although these statements are important for my entire organization, in order for my teammates to have accountability in this change they will need to develop their own why that they will be invested in. This is only a small portion of the six sources of influence that will continue to lead the change we are looking for. These six sources are a part of a larger strategy referred to as the Influencer Model. To begin this strategy, vital behaviors will have to be developed along with a result. Each team member will follow three vital behaviors that will subsequently lead them to our result. These are small but lethal changes for our organization. Personal, social and structural abilities and motivations will be targeted to continue leading change and therefore, success.

Creating a plan that will help my team achieve a wildly important goal will require the four disciplines of executions and the five stages of change. Our team will refer to this as the 4DX Plan. Focusing on one goal at a time will allow our team to not lose sight of other goals that we plan to achieve in the future. Leading change means knowing what is important at this moment in time and creating these subtly changes together. Building this plan as a team will hold each one of us accountable in making positive change in our organization and, one day, the world.

Communication is an important part of all relationships. This initiative is no different. There will be heated topics and emotions will run high, but using the tools provided in the Crucial Conversation book will allow my team and I to become self-differentiated leaders and learners to work through those tough conversations.

Each one of these strategies and plans will work cohesively to lead the change with our organization and innovation. Small steps are still big leaps when it comes to change.

 

Why, How, What Statements

 
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WHAT

We promote a growth mindset and prepare students to flourish in blended learning environments and real world experiences. 

Creating change has always seemed like a relatively easy thing to do. It isn't until you begin to understand the process that easy is the last thing I would use to describe change. Now if someone told me the key to change is starting with the heart, I would be hesitant to believe such a thing. I have become programmed to research and look for the data that makes these changes promised, but what I’ve failed to realize is that it begins with the heart. Dr. John Kotter explains that change is sixty percent heart and only forty percent mind (Kotter, 2011). This can’t be! My heart leads my brain? My mind isn’t what leads my decisions? Although data does play a factor in many of our decisions, the fact is, our mind doesn’t go where our heart doesn’t lead us.

 Simon Sinek (2009) repeatedly tells us “People don’t buy what you do, they buy why you do it.” After hearing and reading this statement, I got to thinking. “Why do I prefer H-E-B over Walmart?” Now, there are tons of grocery stores I could’ve chosen to compare, but in South Texas these are two major stores that one would have to decide on where to shop. My heart told me H-E-B, immediately. I didn’t need a second to compare the notes I took on each or the data I had retrieved from surveys I had passed out. I will choose to shop at H-E-B time and time again regardless of how long their checkout lines are. Now, I began the research. (Heart, first. Mind, second. Maybe Kotter does have a point.) "Because People Matter” (Learn the Values and Vision of the Top Grocers, 2020). That is H-E-B’s why. The “ah-ha” moment happened. Of course people matter to them. They always provide me with the best coupon deal. Buy these two items and get seven more for free. FOR FREE. H-E-B cares about making sure I get the best deal before I even step foot in their door. I buy their why.

I believe in providing young learners opportunities that will shape them into leaders of their learning and our community. I don’t want my students to only be successful within the four walls of my classroom. Rather, I want them to be successful at life, my classroom is just the start of that. I believe in creating leaders who will guide our classroom, and one day our community, in the right directions. I plan to instill this learning mentality through a blended learning environment where students can collaborate with their classmates using 21st century technology that will allow them to flourish in real world experiences.

References:

Kotter, J. [Dr. John Kotter]. (2011, March 23). The heart of change [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1NKti9MyAAw

 

Sinek, S. [TEDx Talks]. (2009, September 28). Start with why: How great leaders inspire action [Video file].

     Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u4ZoJKF_VuA&t=164s

 

Learn the values and vision of the top grocers. (2020, January 20). The Balance Small Business. Retrieved March 20, 2021, from https://www.thebalancesmb.com/mission-statements-of-largest-supermarkets-2892165

Influencer model

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Creating change requires more than a growth mindset. There are vital behaviors that need to be put in place and reflected on often. Ideally, two or three behaviors are needed to have changed behavior. As explained in the Influencer, without specific vital behaviors success and change will not occur. Once these vital behaviors are developed, sharing and implementing them with the proposed group is the next step. The six sources of influences are listed and described to use in cohesion with the vital behaviors. Using three different domains (personal, social and structural) organizational change can occur through motivation and ability. It is important to understand that in order to see success with these changes at least four of the six sources need to be implemented. Doing this will increase the success of the proposed changes by ten times. 

The video above explains why combining at least four sources of influences can increase the rate of success using examples everyone can relate to. 

References: 

Grenny, J., Patterson, K., Maxfield, D., McMillan, R., & Switzler, A. (n.d.). Influencer: The new science of leading change, second edition (2nd ed.). McGraw-Hill Education.

VitalSmarts Video. (2009, September 21). All Washed Up! [Video]. YouTube. https://youtu.be/osUwukXSd0k

 

4dx plan

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Click here  to download and read my full 4DX plan, or watch the video* below to see how my team and I plan to implement this strategy to help make our innovation plan successful.

*This video is what I would use to present the 4 disciplines of execution to my new team members who have not read the book or are still in the beginning stages of reading the book.

In order to help my team create significant learning environments with blended learning station rotations, we have researched multiple strategies to be successful. We have begun using the Influencer Model and will now incorporate our 4DX Plan to create the change we want to see in our organization. Not one strategy alone will create the change we want to see. This is why we will be using both strategies together along with a growth mindset plan and other tools we have researched and discussed.

References: 

http://gabrielpecher.de/four-proven-steps-to-finally-follow-through-on-your-important-goals/. (n.d.). Four proven steps to finally follow through on your important goals | gabriel pecher. http://gabrielpecher.de/four-proven-steps-to-finally-follow-through-on-your-important-goals/


Chris McChesney; Sean Covey; Jim Huling & Chris McChesney; Sean Covey; Jim Huling. (n.d.). The 4 disciplines of execution (5th ed.). Simon & Schuster.

 

Crucial conversations

Heated conversations happen countless times a day. I bet you can think of one right now that you’ve had recently. What was the result of that conversation? Was it good? Did it involve someone yelling? Or someone getting their feelings hurt? If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you have had a crucial conversation and need to read and reread the book "Crucial Conversation" by Joseph Grenny, Kerry Patterson, and Ron McMillan.

 

I suspect multiple crucial conversations in regards to my innovation plan. Between the resistors and the poorly differentiated leaders, there are an abundance of ways that people are going to try and drag myself and others on my team into the dreaded triangle. Using the crucial conversation tools will allow us to work through that and not only have a meaningful discussion but gain results as well. 

 

Our first step is to get unstuck. Although I am leading this innovation, my team needs to know that their input is valued and important. Our innovation as a whole has a Why, but let’s not forget that each and every one of us have our own why that we created in our Influencer Model. We need to keep those in clear view along with the WIG(s) we have created together using our 4DX plan

 

We are equipped with some of the most beneficial tools to conquer the whirlwind and chaos that awaits, and although we all have the same ultimate goal in mind, we are human and it is inevitable that at some point we will disagree. What needs to remain important is realizing when these crucial conversations are occurring. It is important that we see the signs and revert back to these steps that Grenny, Patterson and McMillian have given us. During this time, we need to keep it safe for both parties. Whether our discussion is with a resistor with opposing views or with a teammate that we are not currently in agreement with, if they do not feel safe and comfortable to share their true voice then nothing will be accomplished.

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As we learned with becoming a self-differentiated leader, emotions need to be controlled. If a crucial conversation is being held, there will obviously be strong emotion, but understanding that and taking the negativity out of it will allow the conversation to grow and gain the results and change our innovation seeks. If there is anything that we as humans crave (other than learning) is respect. We want to be respected and I think our ultimate goal should be to give respect as well. Doing both shows what kind of leader and person you are. There is a way to politely be direct with a conversation yet respectful, and finding that balance is something we should all try to achieve.

 

If you’ve read through my leading change page, you have seen that all of my strategies and plans require me to collaborate with my team. This is because exploring more than just the one plan and path I have will have a greater impact than just my own ideas. I’m sure you’ve heard that two heads are better than one. Now imagine how much better off we would be with five or six or more heads on our team. It is important to remember that a good leader recognizes that we cannot run with every idea that is proposed...yet. With open communication and a Growth Mindset we allow ourselves and our team to dream of the wild and crazy things.

 

Lastly, everything described has only been words. We’ve had the discussions, the conversations, the collaboration, but all of this means nothing if we do not put it into action. Change only occurs if actions are taken. We've had the crucial conversations, now let's have change. 

References: 

Patterson, K., McMillan, R., & Grenny, J. (n.d.). Crucial conversations: Tools for talking when stakes are high. McGraw-Hill.

Vital Smarts India. (2012, February 10). Crucial Conversations Explained in 2 Minutes [Video]. YouTube. https://youtu.be/ixEI4_2Xivw

How to handle crucial conversations with skill. (1969, December 31). Retrieved May 1, 2021, from https://sourcesofinsight.com/crucial-conversations/