BEN MARTINEZ
Relax. Look Around. Take Action.
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How To Change Organizations...

Hello. I am writing to remind you that your week will not get better than a Thursday. Thursday is a day when people are exciting for Friday and glad hump day Wednesday is over. Friday is a buzz kill because you realize you did not get the work done you were supposed to and Friday is also a day you are reminded that you are like a hamster in a wheel...trained to get excited for a 2 day weekend. Change your mindset. Your team of people probably looks like the people in the boat rowing. Change in organizations happens in small groups. Small like the people in the boat. How many people are engaged? How many are checked out? You get the point. Every team has them.

Be wary of the one (wo)man claim that they can change a large organization (hundreds to thousands of people and many layers of management). These are mass movements and require many small groups to change.

Change happens when you organize people into small groups and align on one purpose or mission. Change the way you think about changing organizations. Start with a small group. Like two to ten people. Then look for other small groups. The groups do not have to be inside your office walls...

Look beyond your office walls. Companies fail to innovate the day they stop looking outside their four walls. Create opportunities for the random intrusion. The random run-in with people smarter than you. Cities, like a San Francisco, New York City, etc, have an innovative and entrepreneur culture because they have more opportunities for the random intrusion. I heard that from someone smarter than me. Run into smarter people than you...

Everybody's idea of change is to think big. They want to change the way an entire organization creates something, sells something or spends something. The new policy (HR, legal, finance, etc.) that will fix the entire company or the new program that will make people happy. New programs or policies usually impact a few people, but can piss off several people. Start with the change of a few people.

Too many people organized around organizational change means longer time horizons to change something, to coordinate something or to do something good for a customer.

What about politics? They always exist, but they slow movements up when an organization grows bigger. Again- Start small. Things go faster that way.

Change starts with me, then you. That's how I think of organizational change.

PS - If your everyday is like a Thursday - Keep rowing. You are doing something good.