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Have you ever wondered why a new idea “catches on” in one organization but “withers and dies” at another? Have you tried to lead a change in your organization only to be met by resistance?
In the book, “Tribal Leadership,” the authors (Logan, King & Fischer-Wright) say that tribes get the work done in organizations. Therefore, you need the support of the tribes in order to get anything done.
Well, that sounds interesting but I couldn’t find any tribes on the organization chart.
That’s because tribes are not an official team or department. Tribes are groups of people who choose to rally around a common cause – something they believe in.
For successful change, tap into the tribal leader – another person you won’t find on an org chart.
The tribal leader and the tribe are formed together. The tribal leader works to build up the tribe and the tribe members then recognize that person as the leader. The leader builds up the tribe by helping them to start talking about their common cause – it could be an unfair policy or a shared belief in equality.
Whatever the cause is, the leader starts the conversations and brings others into the discussions. Soon a tribe is formed around the topic.
The tribe leader is the person who others respect, they seek their opinions – regardless of their title. To find the tribe leader look for someone who is well connected. Talk to this person. For maximum success, get the tribe leader on your project team, or bring them in as a key stakeholder for giving feedback on the project.
If you are blind to tribe dynamics you will struggle to get it accepted and implemented. In many cases, the change will out-right fail! Without the support of the tribe leader, your change has a small percentage of success.
Let's talk about getting involvement in change Valerie.MacLeod@HainesCentre.com
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