For people to be willing to change, they must
feel that they can try to change, without fear of embarrassment or
reprisal. The challenge to the organization (and management), in
the long run, is to create an environment of change and let people
know that it's okay to try, fail, and try again. The Wright
brothers didn't fly the first time.
Very simply, workers must feel empowered to do
whatever it takes, within legal and ethical limits, to make
necessary changes. People have a desire to succeed, and the thing
that often frustrates them the most is roadblocks (existing
paradigms) over which they have no control.
The change environment is most heavily
influenced by the actions of managers, who must see themselves in
a new light and perhaps take on completely new roles. Of critical
importance is the commitment of top management to
creating a change environment. Here are some action items for
creating a Change Environment. 
• Top management understanding and commitment
• Orientation across entire organization
• Open communication
• Ensuring people understand and support change
• Asking people for help, not telling them how to act
• Educating management
• Recognizing that change involves education, training,
Becoming Able to Create Change
In addition to being willing to change, people
must work on their ability to create change. Not everyone has the
ability to initiate change. Often this involves creative ways to
break the bonds of existing paradigms.
The argument has raged for a long time as to
whether creative individuals are born or made. No matter what
one's genetic makeup, the following techniques enhance
• Brainstorming: A group technique in which any and
all ideas are recorded, in a nonjudgmental setting, for later
• Free Association : Analogies and symbols are used
to foster unconventional thinking.
• Attribute Listing: Ideal characteristics are
collected and screened for useful insights.
• Creative Leap: Thinking up idealistic solution and
situation and working back to feasibility.
• What If? and Why?: Ask questions that challenge
the status quo; don't be afraid to keep asking.
• Role Reversal: Being forced to argue for the
A Summary Case
A mini-case describing how Motorola broke
through the bonds of paradigm paralysis will be presented. Space
limitations do not permit its inclusion here.
Accepting the Challenge of Change
The watchword of the 1990s is change, and as
shown, change doesn't just happen. Successful change requires
effort, challenge, and perhaps failure. The successful change
master, doesn't accept the same tired old paradigms, but breaks
beyond them to create new paradigms that meet the future.
Remember, What is impossible today may become the norm
tomorrow!—so be prepared.
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