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Changemakers in a crisis

It's time to shine a light on those overcoming resistance to change and replacing it with experimentation, and renewed energy.

If there is one learning to have come from the ongoing pandemic that continues to threaten our economy, our organisations, our people, it is this:

Crisis is a choice.

The moment it hits with its sudden, overnight shift it forces each of us to act. Crisis demands action. It demands decisiveness. It demands movement and choice. It shines a spotlight onto every one of our organisations and surfaces all of our problem areas. The vulnerabilities that in peacetime, we simply ignore or remain unaware of, and in a crisis become glaringly obvious.

Crisis is the mirror that forces us to confront the hard truth about what works and what does not.

In that single moment, our pace of ideation, decision making and implementation is challenged. We realise we were kidding ourselves as we implemented ‘perfectly’ designed operating models, the flaws of which we can no longer tolerate. Opportunities stare us in the face. We realise that our survival relies on seizing them. On making our organisations immediately better, faster, sharper. It relies on making change happen.

It is at that moment, all eyes turn to a different cohort of leaders.

They turn to those amongst us who have spent their entire careers in relentless pursuit of making our organisations better. The ones who continually assess the status quo. Constantly focused on identifying where we should act and why. Brave enough to imagine what an organisation could be, whilst grounded enough to roll up their sleeves and make it possible for their teams and colleagues to get there.

They are the challengers. The agitators. The reformers. Or as I call them, the Changemakers.

They have never been afraid to put their heads above the parapet.

Now more than ever before, we have a duty.

If we are to overcome the challenges 2020 has brought us, now is the time for us to be vocal and share our stories. Shining a light on what it takes to overcome apathy, bureaucracy, resistance to change and replace it with agility, experimentation and renewed energy.

Allowing others to see our scars, so all can learn the pitfalls. Sharing how great it feels when we succeed in making brilliant change happen, so others are inspired to empower our organisations to do the same. Being true champions of collaboration both when we need help and to co-create and drive forward ideas.

Over the coming 12 months, I will be speaking to some of the most renowned changemakers from across industry, the third sector and Government so we can learn how they do just that.