I’ve been exploring a range of work over the past three months. It never ceases to amaze me how diverse my interests are and that poses a challenge for ‘branding’ myself and winning work. I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m actually interested in changemaking.
I get very excited about new technologies and trends, often because they dangle a carrot of new ways to solve old problems. If I’m going to be honest, my role in changemaking is at that future thinking end of the problem – heralding the new, testing ideas and exploring ways to get traction. I’m very aware that many other personalities are needed in any movement that supports positive change.
To that end, this post is about comparing different models for change and my conclusions about the most important elements:
From the story of stuff we have 6 types of changemaker (and a handy quiz so you can identify yourself in amongst that lot)
From the systems changers website we have six themes from interviews of exceptional change agents:
- The craft of collaboration
- Vision and Narrative
- Theory and practice need to be understood as a double helix.
- Systems change involves liminal spaces.
- Power and the shape of change – it looks more like a movement.
- Leadership – Systemic leaders are unafraid of the unknown.
…and a link to this article by Donella Meadows which explores the best leverage points for changing systems, from the perspective of systems theory. Probably one to refer back to when planning a change initiative.
From the Ashoka Changemakers and the League of Intrapreneurs we have a series from the Virgin entreprenuer blog about the eight faces of the intrapreneur. I was originally going to try and map this against this excellent ‘Pathways for Change’ document which first made me reflect on the model for change that resonates most with me.
When I read them properly, the eight faces of intrapreneur didn’t have useful distinctions. The pathways for change theories resonated because the document clarified that you need to think about where the power for change sits. I believe all the models in this document are relevant because grassroots collaboration works best when there is political will and good policy timing. I don’t think political will can progress very far unless it falls on fertile ground, and that ground needs to be prepared by those working at the coalface. So if you can, I’d always advocate for working at all levels in the hierarchy to unlock the power for change.
Nevertheless I had a go at mapping different models and came up with my own list of essentials:
- a learning journey
- visible progress/ quick wins
I’ll develop each of these in later posts…