Community change

Collectives of like minded people can make significant changes at organisations

Something resonated with me this morning, whist reading the Harvard BR article, Socially Responsible Business Can Only Succeed If It Becomes a Movement.

There’s something quite exciting about being drawn into a collective of people who have a desire to create movement.

Richard Straub who wrote the article says this:

 What does it take to cause something big about a community to change — something that no one individually has much power over, even something as big as a prevailing mind-set?

We know what it takes: a social movement. And social movements aren’t only the domain of community organizers and college students. Business people can set them in motion, too, as we are seeing right now.

I belong to an organisation which breeds change agents; that draws in through its cause a like-minded and talented collective of individuals. We are a movement.

I feel grateful to work in an environment where the freedom to be creative as well as a trust in my ability to deliver, has led us to beyond what we set out to achieve. Amazing programmes, something different is the brief, or unusual. I particularly love the come up with ‘something special’ gig. It seems that creating a movement is part of the everyday expectation, and plays out in our enthusiastic and often self-critiquing commitment to the job.

For me, movement equals a shift in thinking, eliciting a different/new e-motion, or a positively deviant nudge that promotes adaption in an individual. Leading to a spark in others that burns brighter and brighter.

On reflection, I figure it happens when people gather together and buy into the emotional momentum that is generated. The fringe benefits are a gain in energy - an uplifting sense of appreciation towards others expertise. I feel positive and grateful to be part of something and super keen to contribute everything I can. Be the best I can.

I guess I also know who those people are, in my organisation, who help me achieve this. The ones that generate and give energy – the spirited innovators and I seek them out to build motivation, giving us the impetus needed to succeed.

The MadHatters Tea Party has to be one great example. I had a group of 40 teachers, 24 hours - not much time, and an in-depth theoretical input to deliver. Oh and make it memorable. I like a challenge! So we came up with a crazy idea and made it happen.

A recipe – for disaster or a risk worth taking…

So I figure out:

  1. Who would be up for this challenge? Who would enjoy this? Who would come along with me on this journey?
  2. I bounce lots of ideas around with those who love to stretch their minds. We get the energy flowing. Then let it marinade. Reflect on the ideas. Sleep on it. See what we come back with.
  3. Once partly formed, start to check it out with those who’ll give you a realist’s view. Let it infuse a little longer.
  4. Play it out in your mind, with the ‘if’ and ‘but’ stirred in.
  5. Gather your already engaged team, formulate and nail it down. Decide.
  6. Then prepare together. Get excited, then focused, then perform like you’ve never performed before.
  7. Afterwards…. We sit back together, celebrate our own and others achievements, re-tell the moments where shift happened, e-motions flooded in and adaption occurred.

The risk is worth taking, the outcome often more than you ever expected and the experience – AWESOME for those who lived it with you.

The most satisfying moment for me, is many months or years down the line, that energy, memory, behaviour, shift, lives on; Burning away, maybe ferociously or as a tiny glow waiting to be reignited.

So what do you want to change in your environment? I’d love to hear from you and discuss how this could be achieved. Contact Us