Fearless Change: Patterns for Introducing New Ideas

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9780201741575: Fearless Change: Patterns for Introducing New Ideas

“All that have ever tried to impose change in their organization will immediately recognize and truly value the in-depth knowledge and experience captured in this book. It contains a collection of eye-openers that is a treasure chest for pioneers of new organizational ideas, A fantastic toolbox for use in future missions!”
—Lise B. Hvatum, product development manager, Schlumberger

“If you have need of changing your organization, and especially of introducing new techniques, then you want to understand what is in this book. It will help you avoid common pitfalls that doom many such projects and will show you a clear path to success. The techniques are derived from the experience of many individuals and organizations. Many are also fun to apply. This stuff is really cool—and really hot.”
—Joseph Bergin, professor of computer science, Pace University, New York

“If change is the only guarantee in life, why is it so hard to do? As this book points out, people are not so much resistant to change itself as they are to being changed. Mary Lynn and Linda have successfully used the pattern form to capture and present the recurring lessons of successful change efforts and have placed a powerful knowledge resource in the hands of their readers.”
—Alan O'Callaghan, researcher, Software Technology Research Laboratory, De Montfort University, United Kingdom

“The most difficult part of absorbing patterns, or any technology, into an organization is overcoming the people issues. The patterns in this book are the documentation of having gone through that experience, giving those that dare push the envelope a head start at success.”—David E. DeLano, IBM Pervasive Computing

“If you have ever wondered how you could possibly foster any cultural changes in your organization, in this book you will find a lot of concrete advice for doing so. I recommend that everyone read this book who has a vast interest in keeping his or her organization flexible and open for cultural change.”
—Jutta Eckstein, Independent Consultant, Objects In Action Author of Agile Software Development in the Large

48 Patterns for Driving and Sustaining Change in Your Organization

Change. It's brutally tough to initiate, even harder to sustain. It takes too long. People resist it.

But without it, organizations lose their competitive edge. Fortunately, you can succeed at making change. In Fearless Change, Mary Lynn Manns and Linda Rising illuminate 48 proven techniques, or patterns, for implementing change in organizations or teams of all sizes, and show you exactly how to use them successfully.

Find out how to

  • Understand the forces in your organization that drive and retard change
  • Plant the seeds of change
  • Drive participation and buy-in, from start to finish
  • Choose an "official skeptic" to sharpen your thinking
  • Make your changes appear less threatening
  • Find the right timing and the best teaching moments
  • Sustain your momentum
  • Overcome adversity and celebrate success

Inspired by the "pattern languages" that are transforming fields from software to architecture, the authors illuminate patterns for every stage of the change process: knowledge, persuasion, decision, implementation, and confirmation. These flexible patterns draw on the experiences of hundreds of leaders. They offer powerful insight into change-agent behavior, organizational culture, and the roles of every participant.

Best of all, they're easy to use—and they work!

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From the Inside Flap:

...there is nothing more difficult to carry out, nor more doubtful of success, nor more dangerous to handle, than to initiate a new order of things. For the reformer has enemies in all those who profit by the old order, and only lukewarm defenders in all those who would profit by the new order, this lukewarmness arising partly from fear of their adversaries...and partly from the incredulity of mankind, who do not truly believe in anything new until they have had actual experience of it.
—Niccolo Machiavelli, The Prince

You miss one hundred percent of the shots you never take.
—Wayne Gretzky, Hall of Fame hockey player

Since you picked up this book, we assume that you've tried to introduce something new into your organization. Maybe you were successful or maybe you were not completely happy with the result. Change is hard. Wouldn't it be wonderful if all the people, just like you, those "powerless leaders," who have had some success in their attempts to introduce a new idea, could sit down with you and share their secrets? This book will provide the next best thing. We've gathered strategies from those successful people so you can take advantage of their experience.

We've been working on introducing new ideas into the workplace for some time. Mary Lynn Manns is a professor at the University of North Carolina at Asheville, whose recent doctoral work concerned this topic. Linda Rising is an independent consultant who has experience introducing new ideas both in academia and industry. Together with all the others who have shared their experiences with us, we have many years of documented successes.

Each technique or strategy we have collected is written as a pattern—a form of knowledge management for capturing a recurring, successful practice. The patterns in this book are the result of years of documenting our observations, hearing from people who have introduced new ideas, reading a variety of views on the topics of change and influence, studying how change agents throughout history have tackled the problems they faced, and sharing our work for comments and feedback. This book, the final product, does not simply reflect our ideas but includes those of many different people in many different organizations throughout the world. Expert change leaders are likely to say "I do that!" when they read many of these techniques. We will take this comment as a tribute to our work because our goal was to identify tried and true practices, not just a collection of good ideas that may or may not work.

The idea of documenting patterns for successful solutions to recurring problems was introduced by a building architect named Christopher Alexander. Even though we are not architects, a number of us in the software development community have adopted Alexander's approach as a way to capture known solutions for software architecture, software design, testing, customer interaction, and other aspects of software development. The introduction of new ideas is, of course, not limited to the software area, but it's where we both began to see a new source for important and useful patterns.

We intend this book for business practitioners rather than academic scholars, so we have chosen not to cite sources inside the text. However, we are always happy to answer any questions about the specific sources and the patterns. This work is built on research, including that of Robert Cialdini, Malcolm Gladwell, Geoffrey Moore, E.M. Rogers, Peter Senge, and many others. We have included a complete list of citations in the References section, if you would like to read further.

The patterns are listed alphabetically, with a brief summary, on the inside front and back covers of the book. Pattern names include a page reference where the complete pattern may be found, for example, Fear Less(?). As we describe pattern uses and experience reports, you will see a pattern reference and you can turn to the appropriate page and read more about the pattern. This book can thus become a reference after you have read the initial chapters. When looking for the solution to a particular problem, you can simply skim the summaries and refer to the complete pattern description for a more detailed explanation.

This pattern collection has evolved over several years thanks to many pattern originators and countless others who have provided comments, pattern uses, and other feedback. Even though the book has now been published, we continue to care for these patterns and would like to hear from all of you, our readers. As Christopher Alexander noted:

We may then gradually improve these patterns which we share, by testing them against experience: we can determine, very simply, whether these patterns make our surroundings live, or not, by recognizing how they make us feel.



0201741571P06082004

From the Back Cover:

Fear Less: Introducing New Ideas into Organizations48 patterns for driving and sustaining change in your organization

Change. It's brutally tough to initiate, even harder to sustain. It takes too long. People resist it. But without it, organizations die. Fortunately, you can succeed at making change. In Fear Less, Linda Rising and Mary Lynn Manns reveal 48 patterns of behavior associated with successful change in knowledge-driven organizations, and show exactly how to use them in your organization.

Find out how to

  • Understand the forces in your organization that drive and retard change
  • Plant the seeds of change
  • Drive participation and buy-in, from start to finish
  • Choose an "official skeptic" to sharpen your thinking
  • Make your changes appear less threatening
  • Find the right timing and the best "teaching moments"
  • Sustain your momentum
  • Handle adversity, celebrating success

Inspired by the "pattern languages" that are transforming fields from software to architecture, the authors illuminate patterns for every stage of the change process: knowledge, persuasion, decision, implementation, and confirmation. These flexible patterns draw on the experiences of hundreds of leaders. They offer powerful insight into change agent behavior, organizational culture, and the roles of every participant. Best of all, they're easy to use—and they work!



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