Reasons why so many changes fail #10 Moving to How Before Why

Tuesday, July 20th, 2010

Reasons why so many changes fail

#10 Moving to How Before Why

Moving to how before people know why a change is needed.

People need to know why something is important before they can get interested or even be willing to hear why you want them to do it. Too often we fail to address “why” something is important before we launch into explaining “how” it should get done. I am not interested in the explanation of how until you’ve convinced me why this is important.

I have been subject to many lengthy PowerPoint presentations when a well-meaning leader introduced a big change. The first three slides deal with why this change is important, and then the next 150 mind-numbing slides deal with how they are going to proceed. If he didn’t grab their attention in those first three slides, he is not going to see a spark of recognition at slide 29. His audience tuned out twenty slides ago.

(This is adapted from the new paperback edition of Beyond the Wall of Resistance: Why 70% of Changes Still Fail – and What To Do About It. Rick Maurer. Bard press. 2010) 

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