Tiffin University kicked-off its 29th annual Good Morning World lecture series Thursday with a co-author of "Who Killed Change," John Britt.
Britt, who is a partner with Mountjoy and Bressler LLP, has more than 20 years of experience in process-driven change and change management. He has worked as a business adviser, leading teams at several large companies in the change management process to improve business outcomes.
Britt began by asking: "Who likes change?"
"Change is not easy," he said. "The idea of change is easy, but the execution is hard."
The message he wanted to convey was that change is complicated, and if people are struck with too many changes at one time, the ideas can become diluted.
For an organization to be successful with change, he said, it has to be selective on the changes it is trying to make and then focus on them.
Britt presented a chart from Tom DeCoster on stages of how people deal with change, akin to the stages of grief. Those stages are shock, denial, fighting the change, strong emotions about the change, trying, acceptance, beginning to have a fuller understanding, experimentation and finally integration.
For people to change, Britt said, "(You) have to get involved with the people you're asking to change. (You) need the commitment of the people."
"Who Killed Change?" was Britt's first book and it was co-authored by Ken Blanchard. The book was published in May 2009 and has been translated in 17 other languages.
Britt discussed how change can fail for an organization with several key terms. The No. 1 reason is communication.
"We have to get back to the basics of communication and by being good listeners," Britt said.
"The information age is here, let's use it," he said.
The second main reason change fails is accountability.
Britt said, "Accountability starts as soon as you get out of bed in the morning. We cannot make people change, we can influence them to change."
Britt concluded the mornings event by citing the poem "Our Work is Much the Same."
"Change succeeds on level ground, not on the peak. ... Stand beside us and get to know us if you want us to change."
Britt has consulted with more than 300 companies on creating strategic methods to increase profitability and has published articles in leading industry journals, and is an experienced speaker.
Britt holds a master's degree in organizational management and a bachelor's degree in management and human resources.
The next speaker in the Good Morning World series is set for November.