Teaching the Elephant to Dance

Teaching the Elephant to Dance

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Belasco, James A. Crown Publishing, 1990
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IN THIS SUMMARY

The active leader identifies the need to change and quickly develops a new strategic approach that contains three elements: (1) the repositioning of products/services to build competitive advantage, (2) talented people to execute the new strategies, and (3) organizational resources that focus on the new strategies. These elements help to chart the right direction, however, it is essential to move quickly to make it happen.An energizing, inspiring vision, applied at all levels of an organization, is the key to mobilizing support. This vision-the clarion call to employees, customers, and suppliers-clearly identifies what the organization stands for and why it should be supported. In addition, it draws attention to the critical factors that produce long-term success. Organizational systems give people the tools to use the new vision, however, the bottom line in all change efforts begins and ends with you-people will follow your actions.Be aware that process is the product-change is not a destination. Thus, you must work constantly to prevent the demand for short-term results from undermining long-term process considerations. Ask what you are doing that either empowers or prevents change. And, consider that there are significant benefits to asking questions of employees rather than supplying all the answers: Asking questions develops people and empowers the vision. Urgency is key-it provides the necessary energy.