Transformation begins with the awakening by individuals within the organization. It may come from an outside change agent who has engaged the organization in learning. The awakening begins with a challenge, a question, (or a 2×4 upside the head!). It brings questions – not answers. It is not a new way to do business; it is a new way to develop thinking about how to think, manage and lead. It is the realization on the part of the leader that, in spite of best efforts, they could do better – much, much better.
The system of transformation begins with an awakening. The aim of the awakening is to impress the importance of the need to change. Without an awakening, the organization can, at best, learn many important lessons. The awakening creates a new “mind set” to see the world anew. Once the awakening occurs, even if it occurs after the start of learning, the transformation will have an explosion and previously “learned” lessons will have greater significance, even in retrospect. For that individual, there will be a context to which they can relate.
Transformation occurs with intention. Intention is the conscious choosing of a course of action. Too often, we do things with no thought to intention (and, for some reason are then surprised by the unintended results and consequences!). Intention is not “going along for the ride.” It is not something that happens to someone (or to an organization) without its knowledge and consent. It is commitment – deep and thoughtful commitment.
Without intention, there can be no transformation. Without intention, transformation is reduced to change. This thesis is similar to the difference between memorization and learning, only more profound. Deeply motivated intention occurs after the awakening.
The system of transformation cannot create itself. That is, if knowledge existed within the organization to solve a problem, then the problem wouldn’t have occurred. Great leaders are those who ask for help gaining new knowledge and wisdom. They do not chase the “flavor of the month” – the latest management fad; but they go through a rigorous process of learning from others with profound knowledge.
Transformation develops into a vision. By having a vision of what the future could hold, individuals realize that their world could be better, no much, much better. By understanding the awakening, the intention and the system of transformation the vision becomes a reality that changes how and what people think. Transformation doesn’t become an event or a product to be managed rather a new way to develop thinking about how to think, manage and lead.
Transforrmation requires leadership grounded in knowleedge, understanding and wisdom. From such things people will follow those leading the transformation.