Need to make changes at work? answer "What's in it for them"

PrfmcLrnSprl 2.01

When #CHANGE is going happen, make sure everyone can answer the question: "What's in it for me”.

This question is a crucial part of Step 1 "Understand" from the Performance Learning Spiral. The answer allows your #team members to take ownership for their role in the project.

The Performance Learning Spiral includes 4 basic steps for implementing your ideas in any situation at work or home.  The focus is on 4 simple words: Understand - Apply - Integrate - Live



Do your teams understand what the goal is and know how to achieve it? We have a tendency to believe people understand what is expected, especially if they acknowledge the message. Yet do they? If a project is going to go off the rails, it will be at the Understand Step. So here's how to ensure Understanding has occurred:

What's in it for them to care?


  • The team leader (or members of the team) can communicate with confidence what the goal is. they know what a successful end result looks like, how it's going to be measured, and what's in it for them to care about it.
  • Make sure your audience truly understands, (the audience are those affected by the change and those who are going to implement it). When they know what's in it for them to care and work at the level of excellence required for follow-through, then they have truly agreed to take ownership for their role in the project.



This is when understanding is translated into action in real life situations. It is at this stage that impatience, lack of resiliency and forgetfulness can seep in. So here's what to do when these behaviors occur:

  • Have Patience: Trust the process of the Spiral. It provides indicators along the way that let you know where the change initiative is in its implementation. Some clients refer to this as creating strategic patience. It’s their competitive advantage.
Opportunity to reinforce success and coach those struggling


  • Resiliency: Foster resilience to help people deal with the inevitable failure that goes along with the Apply Step. Provide lots of opportunity for reinforcing successes, and coach those struggling. Examine what is preventing the Apply Step from occurring. Is there is a training issue? A motivation or a capability issue?
  • Forgetfulness: Periodically the goal is forgotten as day to day tasks take over and focus shifts. Spend time re-enforcing the goal and how to get there. Make sure everyone has gone beyond the Understanding Step, and let people know where they are along the Spiral.



Focus on refinement and systems

Here the project is through the chaos of implementation. Focus is on refinement and systematizing the initiative across the board. Any issues are dealt with, and failures are few and far between.



Change is ingrained into daily lives

At this step the project is running smoothly and people are acting without thought related to learning. The change has been ingrained into their daily schedules, tasks, and lives.

The Performance Learning Spiral can be used in thousands of large and small applications. It has been used by clients to open new operations in other countries, build a unified culture across multiple locations, put in place a customer focused business strategy, and initiate a company bonus program for staff -- to name a few examples of the Spiral's ability to create change within organizations.

Event at home the Spiral is a valuable tool. Our March newsletter had the story of a company president who used the Spiral to teach his son how to drive a car with little conflict.

Copyright © 2017, Jonathan Creaghan  All Rights Reserved





Add comment

Security code