Interview: Dr. John Kotter On Creating Organizational Change

If people have no opinions, no objections and no emotions, it usually means they dont care. And youll be hard-pressed getting their help when you have to actually implement your idea. But conflict shakes people up and gets them to pay attention in a novel way. This gives you the opportunity to say why your idea really is valuable and explain it in a way that wins over hearts and minds securing their commitment to implementing the solution. The next time youre in a meeting where someone is advocating for an idea, see if some conflict emerges. If it does, watch the group and see how people sit up and the energy level rises. Disagreement may seem like a bad thing but it grabs peoples attention. Whats the biggest mistake people make when trying to get buy-in? There are a few of them. First, they dont prepare enough. People often misunderstand preparation to mean just knowing their own idea forwards and backwards. But rehashing what you already know wont help you avoid sounding defensive, frustrated or even disrespectful when fielding question after question on your proposal or idea all things that can derail a conversation and hurt your cause.
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