Trade in Five Common Traps for Keys to Successful Breakthrough Change

Trade in Five Common Traps -IMA

By Mark Samuel

Leaders often talk about making breakthrough changes within their organizations with the intention to transform business results or significantly pivot performance. But when it comes time to take action, they often get stuck not going anywhere. 

To avoid getting stuck in old habits and patterns, turn the following Traps into Courageous Action:

Trade in Opinions for Knowledge

Leaders can debate endlessly about future consequences and results with no basis for assessing reality because it hasn’t yet happened. Leaders of breakthrough results, however, are willing to take actions into unchartered territories, gain experience along the way, and allow their experience to inform the changes they make based on the knowing that comes from experience. The game plan is simple: learn from experience and adjust quickly. 

Trade in Fear of Failure for a Recovery Plan

Creating a business transformation pushes leaders into the space of the unknown, which can be frightening and cause people to feel like they’re moving toward B STATE too quickly, too slowly, or to begin thinking that it looks like a bad idea altogether. It’s important to trust the process, but it’s also important to surface the concerns associated with moving into the unknown of achieving breakthrough results and create a “Recovery Plan” in case the concern does show up. 

Trade in the Vulnerability of Unpredictability for Commitment to Your Picture of Success

In past models of leadership, a leader’s credibility was based on the trust created by predictable goals and results due to past performance. However, when attempting to achieve breakthrough results, the most important thing that the leader must know is a clear future Picture of Success for what breakthrough results look like—not just the desired business outcomes, but the mindset and behaviors necessary for all leaders and employees to work together to achieve and sustain breakthrough results. 

Trade in Decision by Consensus for Moving Forward Quickly to Gain Experience for Learning

The key to success is not achieving buy-in or consensus, but moving forward with the change in order to gain experience so you can learn and make adjustments. Experience has two advantages. First, it can dispel the catastrophic scenarios shared by Negativists to invoke resistance. Second, it demonstrates commitment to the Breakthrough results you desire as you move and make adjustments along the way. 

Trade in Attachment to the Plan of Change for Becoming a GPS to Breakthrough Results

You can make a plan to get to B STATE, but you can’t know if, when, or how that plan will actually work once you start taking action. Think of it like a GPS that makes adjustments as you move toward your destination. If you take a wrong turn, your GPS doesn’t just get you back on the original route, it gets you to your destination in the fastest way possible from where you currently are. This is exactly how it works to get from your current A State to your future B STATE. 

Creating Breakthrough Results is not some external goal you try to achieve. It’s an inner process of changing how you think and what you do that represents a Breakthrough Change. By thinking differently and then doing differently, you produce different results and manifest your breakthrough B STATE transformation.

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