Transformation 101: Avoiding the Inevitable Avoidance Principle

Ashok Singh said, "When people are not able to solve organizational problems, they come down to tweaking the framework to accommodate the dysfunctions." In fact, Tim Ottinger coined this behavior "Singh's Inevitable Avoidance Principle."

How do we know when we’re avoiding tough problems of transformation? Quite literally, we need to see a picture of where behavior isn’t changing.

In this session, discover how to make transformation visible with a simple tool any organization can begin using immediately. Using the power of visual management, learn how simple "sliders" help foster rich, open-ended dialogue and alignment for change. During this informational talk, we’ll use Scrum as the perfect example of how effective this technique can be, while learning how to use the method with any organizational change effort. By creating a visual "picture" of transformation, everyone in the organization can see where attention is needed the most!

 
 

Outline/Structure of the Talk

  • Introductions and WIIFM?
    • Learn how to use visual management to generate a collaborative assessment, focus attention on critical needs, and create shared understanding!
  • Storytelling to set the stage
    • A true story to connect people both conceptually and emotionally to the topic.

  • The Inevitable Avoidance Principle and its existence in transformation initiatives
    • Ron Jeffries & Baseball
    • Michael Church & "I've seen Scrum Kill a Company!"
    • Despite our good intentions (experiment, be flexible), we enable false conclusions.

  • 3 focused risks to attend to... but how?
  • "Mindset Sliders" via Neil Killick as the catalyst for this technique

  • Introduce the visual management method by using Scrum as the example
    • Practitioners and leaders alike claim, “no one does Scrum by the book!” Think about the avoidance principle when you hear this and try not to raise a curious eyebrow. I dare you!
    • Teach the audience what the method is, how to create it, facilitate it

  • Now what? Techniques to decide what to do
    • This method has amazing synergy with three familiar ways to determine experiments and actions.
      • Force Field Analysis
      • Social Cause Mapping
      • Perspective Mapping - my personal fav!

  • Time for questions as needed by the audience

Learning Outcome

At the end of this session, participants will be able to:

  • Explain why visual management is an essential part of "measuring" transformation in a system.
  • Recognize a common pitfall (avoidance) when transitioning to new behaviors.
  • Implement a visual aid to assist everyone in the organization with where attention is needed the most.
  • Design and construct effective experiments focused on transitioning the organization to new behaviors.

Target Audience

With an emphasis on visual management and systems thinking, anyone working in a complex human system where transformation can occur (or is occurring!) will benefit from this session!

schedule Submitted 8 months ago

Public Feedback

comment Suggest improvements to the Speaker
  • Lynn Winterboer
    By Lynn Winterboer  ~  8 months ago
    reply Reply

    Hi Zach - Can you share the slides for this session?

    • Zach Bonaker
      By Zach Bonaker  ~  8 months ago
      reply Reply

      Hello Lynn :)

      This is a big evolution (improvement) of a talk I've given in the past. The design and outline for the talk is complete and I'm very satisfied with it... however my slides need to be updated with lots of new content, flow, and imagery. The old slides are missing a lot of important information.

      Would you accept a black&white "draft" slidedeck showing the intended information (and flow of content), but without the polish? I'll happily commit to providing you with this if transparency is needed to build trust in the submission. Let me know; I'm flexible ;)