"Consulting requires, on one hand, a respect for your current people and processes and on the other hand, a challenge of those very people and processes to change and grow. Too often consultants dive in with our "big ideas" without properly looking at the strengths an agency already has. This often can result in unnecessary duplication, resentment, reduced staff morale, and resistance to change.
"I use my experience as a counselor, therapist, Quality Improvement Director, and Senior Manager to try and see the perspectives of all people involved in a process. While this takes a few extra hours upfront, this strategy prevents a lot of staff frustration and ultimately reduces project time and conserves your resources."
-Mark Cooper, MSW
Turning Employee Resistance Into Excitement
Too often some employees swallow change like a bitter pill, others openly fight against it, and even worse others secretly fight against it. This is often because essential staff members were not a part of the change process and feel blamed, burdened, and bored by it. This does not need to be the case. While it rarely comes easily, ultimately:
Change should be FUN, MOTIVATING, and INVIGORATING for your staff members.
A consultant taking the right approaches to change should actually improve your staff morale.
"Waiting Until Its Perfect" & "Management By Crisis" Moving Away From These Extremes
Rules, regulations, and interpretation are constantly changing. An organization that sits around and waits for everything to be perfect before implementing change is at high risk. However, what are often threats for an agency are not the latest obvious things that everyone is talking about. Instead the larger threats are often more subtle problems that creep up on us over time. Peter Senge uses the parable of the boiled frog to explain this concept. A frog placed into a pot of hot water will sense a crisis and jump out of the pan immediately. However, a frog placed into cool water that slowly increases to a boil will sit calmly (like many organizations) and allow itself to slowly be cooked to death.
"Why? Because the frog's internal apparatus for sensing threats
to survival is geared to sudden changes in his environment,
not to slow, gradual changes."
The Fifth Discipline (1990)
Implementing Changes That Last
It is not enough to change a form, a rule, or a policy; desired changes must be imbedded into your organization so that they become part of your culture. Excellent consulting requires consultants to be able to walk away knowing that tomorrow the improved processes will continue without them.
Quotes from the World Experts
"Everybody has accepted by now that change is unavoidable. But that still implies that change is like death and taxes it should be postponed as long as possible and no change would be vastly preferable. But in a period of upheaval, such as the one we are living in, change is the norm."
for the 21st Century (1999)
"Learning is not compulsory... neither is survival."
W. Edwards Deming
"The ability to learn faster than your competitors may be the only sustainable competitive advantage."
The Fifth Discipline (1990)
|Progress Note Guide|
Copyright © 2003, 2009 Mark Cooper