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Trusted Leaders Can Keep Organizational Change From Running Aground
Stephen R. Balzac, Leadership Development Expert Stephen R. Balzac, Leadership Development Expert
Stow , MA
Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Stephen R Balzac
Trusted Leaders Can Keep Organizational Change From Running Aground

For Immediate Release

"Organizational change fails because leaders are making changes before they've convinced their people that change is even necessary," according to Stephen Balzac in a talk at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Balzac, the author of "The 36-Hour Course in Organizational Development" and president of consulting firm 7 Steps Ahead, pointed out that "leaders assume they have enthusiastic support when they don't even have buy-in; they assume buy-in exists even before they've laid the groundwork for change."

Common wisdom dictates that the problem with organizational change is that people don't like to change. Common wisdom is not always wise and, in this case, is flat out wrong. In fact, people change all the time. People don't like to be changed; they want to be part of the process.

"When the CEO comes out and says, 'We're going to change and it'll be great,' the looks he gets are not showing adoration, they're showing suspicion. People want to know what the brave new world will look like, and they want to understand how you'll get them there without destroying their jobs along the way. That requires trust."

Trust, of course, is a key part of successful change efforts. Unfortunately, leaders often fail to build the necessary reservoir of trust ahead of time. Once the change effort is underway, it's too late. Building that trust between leaders and teams, and between team members, takes time and effort. Few leaders are willing to make that effort, but those that do see outsize returns on their investment of time and energy.

"In the end, you're only leading change if everyone is following you. If no one is following, you're just some guy out taking a walk. Success isn't determined by how fast you start, but by how smoothly you accelerate," says Balzac.

About Steve Balzac

Stephen R. Balzac, "The Business Sensei," is an author, consultant, and professional speaker. He is the president of 7 Steps Ahead, LLC, a consulting firm specializing in helping businesses get unstuck and turn problems into opportunities.

Steve's background in engineering, management, psychology, martial arts, and competitive sports makes him a popular speaker on topics ranging from leadership, motivation, team building, interviewing skills, and sport performance to computer game design. He was a guest lecturer at MIT and WPI. His articles have appeared in a number of journals, including The Journal of Interactive Drama, The IBM Systems Journal, Mass High Tech, Enterprise Management Quarterly, The CEO Refresher, The Journal of Corporate Recruiting Leadership, Analog SF/F and the Worcester Business Journal.

A recognized thought leader, Steve regularly conducts webinars through ExecSense on topics including, "How to Become an Expert Negotiator as a CEO," "The Best Ways to Position Yourself for Your Company's Management Team," "What You Would Learn From Reading the Top Ten Business Books of All Time and How To Apply the Concepts Today." Steve is a contributing author to Ethics and Game Design: Teaching Values Through Play and the author of the 36-Hour Course in Organizational Development published by McGraw-Hill. He is a frequent guest on radio shows including Motivational Minds and Leadership Radio, and is frequently quoted in a variety of publications including IndustryWeek Magazine, The Philadelphia Inquirer and the Boston Business Journal.

He also holds an appointment as an adjunct professor of Industrial/Organizational Psychology.

For further information or to arrange an interview, contact:

Stephen R. Balzac
7 Steps Ahead, LLC
Stow, MA