The Business Transformation Podcast
The Profile of a Business Transformator and Using empathy as a toolset for successful business transformation 
Listen to the Episode below
“Consider people's emotions, facts about people. People are moving in that process and their emotions are data we can't ignore”
Check out our latest podcast with Managing Consultant Lauren Guerrieri.
Lauren is a director of business transformation for GuideWell has been managing consulting and change management for over a decade, and has consulted in every continent in set, except Antarctica.
Laurens clients include Fortune 500 companies, and is currently located in Florida. So just to put a context for our listeners, that we are talking about two different continents from different parts of the world. So the issues that we will discuss are not unique to the US, or to the UK, they are across Business Transformation, irrespective where you are in the world
We discuss Lauren’s experience around three (3) key areas:
- The profile of a business transformator and what type of person makes a good Business Transformator – and why that is important
- Empathy as a toolset – how to use it, and
- What has the industry learned so far and where do they need to improve?
Join this conversation and learn the key takeaways, maybe you can do that in your team and organisation too!
“Consider people’s emotions, facts about people. People are moving in that process and their emotions are data we can’t ignore.” – Lauren Guerrieri
Resources and Links Mentioned:
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Welcome to the Business Transformation Podcast. I’m your host,Heath Gascoigne. This is a show where I cut through all the hype and noise and get to the facts of what actually is business transformation and what is required, how to and how not to do it. I’ll be talking to industry experts and professionals to share their stories, strategies, and insights to help you start, turnaround, or grow your business transformation. By the end of this podcast, we have some practical tips to use to make your business transformation a success. Whether you’re just at the start of your journey or midway through, I hope you enjoy.
[00:00:00] Heath Gascoigne: Hello. My name is Heath Gascoigne, and I am the host of the business transformation podcast. And this is the show for business transformators who are part business strategists and part business designers, part collaborators, and part negotiators business transformators have moved past just business design and includes oversight of implementation of those business designs and business transformations and includes stakeholder management, coordination and negotiation
[00:00:24] Heath Gascoigne: If you work in strategy, development and implementation and work to ensure that the strategy is aligned to business design and technology, then you're probably a business transformator. This is a show where we speak to industry experts and professionals to share their stories, strategies, and insights to help you start, turn around and grow your business transformation.
[00:01:21] Heath: Welcome to the business transmission podcast. And in this episode, we are talking to one of those industry experts. We are speaking to Lauren. Now, Lauren, you're gonna have to forgive me on my Italian pronuniation. Lauren Guerrieri, who is a director of business transformation for GuideWell has been managing consulting and, and change management for over a decade, a decade, and has consulted in every continent in set except Antarctica .
[00:01:52] Heath: So a little plug there, if you any potential clients as a result of this episode or a result of Lauren's background want to, and have some business in Antarctica. Lauren I'm sure will like to round out that box and put a tick in the box that she's now com consulted in every single continent on the world, on the earth.
[00:02:06] Heath: Yes, sir. Okay. And yes, and as, as part of those consultations has consultant for fortune 500 and companies, and currently resides in Florida. Put that in context, I am currently in the UK, not in London, as I usually am. I'm up here for a large leading a large transformation. So just to put a context for our listeners, that we are talking about two different contents from different parts of the world.
[00:02:31] Heath: So what we will Lauren and I will discuss and talk about so keep in mind that this may not as often gets accused as that, oh, that's only happens in the us. What you may find is it is across the world, cross continents. It's not unique to the states or not unique to the UK or the us are the United Kingdom.
[00:02:52] Heath: So yeah, keep that in mind. So Lauren, welcome to the podcast. Thanks you. Thank you for being here. Yeah. Thank you.
[00:02:57] Lauren: I’m so excited to be here.
[00:02:59] Heath: Okay. Great. Now we so because you have a vast over a decade experience in consulting and change management we all keep it at an agenda so that we stay on topic because, you know, I, one, I love this and I love this topic.
[00:03:11] Heath: And I could talk about it for hours and we really don't have hours. We, we got we'll keep it within, within an hour if we can. Okay. For the, for the purpose of our audience, we'll give it to three points. First one being the, what is the, the profile of a business transmitter? What is the ideal type of person that would make a good transmitter?
[00:03:29] Heath: Number two, being empathy, empathy as a tool set as a as a tool technique how do you use it as it necessary in transformation and thirdly, the industry? What is the industry doing well and what is it not doing well? Where can we improve
[00:03:45] Lauren: Okay. Yeah. That topic alone, right. Heath could take several, several podcasts
[00:03:49] Lauren: That last one
[00:03:51] Heath: ah, yeah, yeah. Not wanting to throw stones or, you know, cause like we living in glass houses. Right. So, you know, it's like we all guilty of it. Yeah. Yeah. So there's observers and also practitioners in, in this industry. What are we seeing? That's I can see a perfect example coming into this program.
[00:04:05] Heath: I've just joined is like, oh, okay. So I can see your thinking. I see why you're doing that. But is that the right thing to do? Yeah. Hmm. It's our.
[00:04:14] Lauren: job, right? Why we're here.
[00:04:16] Heath: yep, exactly. So, okay. So first up profile, what's the ideal profile of a business transformation practitioner. And why is it? Why is it important
[00:04:29] Lauren: Yeah. So I think let me make two disclaimers and then let me say something that most people who hire for this position hire these types of roles are gonna find, I found that they find a little bit crazy. And I'm gonna explain it. So the first is I'm not a PhD. I do have master's coursework and organizational design and, and that type of people dynamics
[00:04:48] Lauren: But I oftentimes, when I make statements like this, you know, the people in the scientific community, they do this for a living. They wanna talk about all this different stuff. I'm not qualified to talk about that. Just here, giving you my experience, right? Yep. And then the second is when I talk about business transformation, I get really excited.
[00:05:03] Lauren: I like to talk about the way they think and how it's kind of fundamentally different than others. And sometimes people interpret that if they, you know, maybe don't fit that mold, as I'm saying, they can't be good at business transformation mm-hmm or they're less intelligent. I'm not saying that either.
[00:05:17] Lauren: I'm just giving you a profile of people I've seen do this very successfully. Okay. And why I think that great. So the thing I'm gonna say, that's a little wild is I think transformation are born that way. I think it's an innate skill. I think you come out of the womb with a way of thinking that is just different than everyone around you
[00:05:36] Lauren: And my evidence for that right. Is we've all heard those kids on the playground or in the school yard. And you hear them say things like they get upset, right. And you'll say, why are you upset? And they'll say, cause they're not playing house. Right? Yeah. Or I'm gonna take my ball and go because they're not doing what I say.
[00:05:53] Lauren: Right? Yeah. They're in the classrooms and they're, they're challenging the teacher And why are they doing that things? Well, subset of those kids are just difficult and don't have people skills. Right. But mm-hmm, another subset of those kids I would argue, are born with this thought process, this business transformation mindset.
[00:06:10] Lauren: Where they're looking at the whole picture, start to end the big picture as a process, and they're breaking it down into components and they're starting to see places where things could be better, whatever their definition of better is as a child, right? Yeah. But it's not always the most efficient, but they're challenging because they have this innate need to simplify a system to simplify chaos
[00:06:31] Lauren: Mm-hmm . And to me, the fact that we see that in young children means that people are born with that mindset. Now, I've talked to people about this before, and I also fall into a track sometimes. So I'm gonna make one more disclaimer. Yep. Cause people will sometimes come at me. when I say that and say, well, we see more people in engineering fields and stem careers that are male versus female.
[00:06:54] Lauren: So are you saying more males are born with that ability to see the big picture and work through process in females? And to be really clear, we're not gonna get into gender normatives today, but no, I'm not saying that. I think what I am saying is that people who are born male, female in between that dichotomy are outside all have the capability of being born with that analytical mindset.
[00:07:15] Lauren: Mm-hmm and how that is kind of rewarded and nurtured in someone is what leads someone in my opinion, into stem careers. Right? So. That's wild to a lot of people who hire because I'll, I'll get a lot of pushback saying we gotta hire with certain certifications. We gotta hire out of certain experience.
[00:07:31] Lauren: I want, I want engineers right. To be my architects. And I think that it's likely those people have the right analytical mindset, but I don't think those certifications, those education, that career is what gives them that I think it hones and, and sharpens it. But I think you're born, you're born with that type of mindset personally.
[00:07:51] Heath: Okay. That's like the the, the challenge about our leaders born or made. Yeah. Yeah. And you are saying that they are fun. Most part fundamentally born that.
[00:08:03] Lauren: that's. Yep. Yep. And I hire that way too. yep. I know in an interview, right. I'm not necessarily gonna disqualify someone cuz their experience.
[00:08:10] Lauren: I'm gonna look and you know, when you talk to somebody, if they can do I call it, seeing through the matrix, if they see the ones in zeros or they don't you can pick that up pretty quickly and talking to someone.
[00:08:21] Heath: that's a good one seeing through the matrix. So I've got a couple of quotes there already
[00:08:25] Heath: You've said that I think are great. So you'd be look out for those. That'll be quoting you on. Yeah. So when you say stem career stem careers in the traditional sense engineering or some sort. Okay. Yep
[00:08:39] Lauren: And I think too, what you see in people either children, right? Or adults as that gets honed, is this really specific thought pattern that I think makes a really good business transformation and it's it's that they can see the system, right
[00:08:53] Lauren: They can identify the components, but a system in chaos or a system unidentified. To them is almost like this visceral injustice. It's more than I just need to accomplish the goal. They need the system to be simplified, to feel satisfied. It's and you'll hear that in the passion and the way they talk about things, they don't wanna, they don't wanna do it the right way.
[00:09:13] Lauren: They wanna accomplish the objectives, but this is the right way. Right? Like you hear them say these kinds of things. Yeah. Yeah. And again I think really that just goes back to that kind of mindset.
[00:09:25] Heath: I like how you there's a lot of more, and especially when you talk about the steam and that's say the more the hard like engineering technical skills or, or roles, professionals, professions that when you're coming to transformation and moving, not just say an organization from current state to future state or, you know, transforming to something else there is people process or people, process technology and data that are getting impacted and change.
[00:09:48] Heath: It's not just the hard, like. Say, building or process, but the people elements and how do you change people? I I've always thought of, you know, people unnaturally change verse. And so, but that's as an individual, when you get a group of people together and try to change a group of people, then it's like, well, to the uninitiated, you'll think good luck of that.
[00:10:12] Heath: Cause you've got one person was hard to change, let alone a group of people. And when you get in an organization context where it is almost you know, there's standards and norms and SOPs, and so everyone's working a certain ways of working and now you're gonna change that. Yep. It's like, well, how do you do that now then?
[00:10:29] Heath: So when you are talking now of Really the, a lot on the mindset. Yeah. The mindset of the person changing the others. And so, yeah. So I just hope the audience there picked that up, that there's and you even said it about looking for when you hire a particular mindset, as opposed to the qualification, you said you didn't qual disqualify anyone cause of the qualifications experience, but as the mindset there, you were looking.
[00:10:54] Lauren: that's exactly right. And I think one of the other things that's unique to someone who has this mindset is actually kind of what leads us into empathy. At least in my experience, they tend to prioritize production over people. And when I say that I don't mean they don't care about people. Like they're not naturally compassionate.
[00:11:14] Lauren: They have this fundamental belief that the value of production serves the people, right? So the people have this objective getting all the pieces to line up, however that has to happen. Right? These are risk innovators. However, that has to happen. Is gonna serve the people. So they are people servers, they just don't serve the needs of the people they serve, what they think the people need
[00:11:37] Lauren: And so it's this mindset of them prioritizing the production over people that I think sometimes gets us in trouble. And I actually have some really funny anecdotes. I think actually they may be scary maybe for some folks. They're funny to me now. OK. They were very frightening at that point of my career, but that actually led me to, to kinda learn that the hard way that I'm hoping I can baby save some of your early listeners from having to
[00:12:01] Heath: okay.
[00:12:01] Heath: Or something. I think the really some antidote, I, I think, yeah, that is a very close you can be from, from practitioner's point of view, if you are seen to Most, not this acknowledged, but UN and not acknowledged to the degree, they probably would think it's like technology coming in, so we're gonna change the technology
[00:12:20] Heath: And then people go, well, what about us? You know, are you, is this a technology lead program or is this a business lead program? So, yeah, so I could see where you could get in trouble. If the, maybe it's in the messaging, then if you get the messaging, right. The delivery won't be so.
[00:12:35] Lauren: big. That's exactly right.
[00:12:37] Lauren: And that, that's what I had to learn the hard way. So I think I'm a perfectly nice person. Like I volunteer I meet people, they tend to like me. It's fine. Yep. But I had a lot of experiences earlier in my career where things like this would happen. So one particularly. Insane call. I was an after hours call the client, calls me we're on the phone
[00:12:57] Lauren: She's walking me through kind of some product gap. She's seeing she she's got some problems that she wants technology built for. And I'm walking her through it and this is a long call. Like we're having like an hour long conversation. And I'm walking her through kind of what I think next steps are and how, how to get there
[00:13:12] Lauren: Yep. And then she hits me with it. What is, was just mind blowing. She says to me, you're the reason that my children don't feel they have a mother
[00:13:23] Heath: And it's sad. He, I just like yeah. What,
[00:13:27] Lauren: what right. I think we're having this perfectly nice business conversation. Like she called me after hours. It's not like I kept her there.
[00:13:33] Lauren: And I just did not know what to make of that. We're gonna put that on the table for a minute. Yep. Then I have another client. Right. They call me, they're having some problems in their operations. They're telling me about the problems they're seeing. They're asking me about how other people in the industry are solving this.
[00:13:50] Lauren: It's kind of just one of those off the cuff, like an engagement, like we're not doing a consulting engagement, they just wanted some feedback some consultation. Right. And I walked 'em through like what I see people do and what I'd recommend that they do and how I'd recommend they'd approach that
[00:14:03] Lauren: And I go home and I think that's a perfectly nice and fine conversation, right? Yep. I come back the next day. My boss calls me into his office. and he's like, Hey, did you talk to this client yesterday? I said, sure did. And they're like, oh, okay, great. Did you tell him this? I said, I sure did. I still see no problem.
[00:14:22] Lauren: Right. And she goes, well, he's freaking out. He, it was too much for him to handle. He may not wanna be a client anymore. Like this is a big deal. And again, I'm shocked, right? Yep, yep. Yep. Yep. Fast forward. My company goes through a merger and acquisition. And I am training our whole department before that there became this leadership position
[00:14:44] Lauren: There's a big integration, right? When we've all, hopefully if you've not been through a merger and acquisition, there's a whole lot of integration that happens. You've gotta Freeline technology people. Right. And so there's a leadership position that came up. I'm like, okay, great. I'm gonna apply for that.
[00:14:57] Lauren: I train our whole department. I have a great track record of success. Like I know our technology in and out. Right. I go through my interviews. They're all brilliant. Right. I get in, I get called in for the decision. I think I'm getting great news. I sit down and they're like, Hey, we recognize you have an exceptional track record.
[00:15:13] Lauren: You've never lost a client. Like qual quality assurance is through the roof. You train everybody, your plan is brilliant. We're gonna use it, but we're not gonna give you the position. And again, , I'm like that. That's the wildest thing. I feel like I've ever heard. And. Yeah, right. Yeah. And, but we need you to walk the person that we are gonna hire through your plan and whatever, I'm a team player.
[00:15:35] Lauren: So I did it. But the reasoning was, they said, Hey, in a merger and acquisition, right, people are worried about redundancy. They're worried about layoffs. And we need somebody who has this emotional management skill that we're not sure that you have. And we're worried that without that people are gonna get so panicked, they will leave.
[00:15:55] Lauren: And this was the wake up call. I was like, something is not right, right. I'm producing value. I think I'm doing a great job. I'm not being unprofessional or, or in my opinion, rude to anyone, but something's not quite right about what I'm doing. Yep. And so I actually took a mentor. I'm gonna give a quick shout out to Craig co.
[00:16:14] Lauren: And we did what we deemed how to be nice lessons again, I'm a super nice person. It was just a joking thing. We called this. But he actually kind of imparted with me some tips and tricks to start to value empathy and, and learn how to do this type of emotional management. And what I learned is that right when you're making decisions, they're driven by data and facts, right?
[00:16:35] Lauren: That's when we're doing process consulting, that's what we're doing. Yep. I learned to consider people's emotions, facts about people. People are moving in that process and their emotions are data we can't ignore. And so that's kind of where I started to coin emotions or facts about people.
[00:16:49] Heath: Emotions effects about people.
[00:16:52] Lauren: That's correct. They are data points about people. They cannot be ignored just like you couldn't ignore data about anything else. You can't ignore emotions, Uhhuh. Good. And I remember and so I'm just gonna give this disclaimer to your audience. Don't turn me off because if some of you are like me, I remember him telling me not all the things I'm about to share with you guys, but some of them and my face is very expressive.
[00:17:15] Lauren: And I remember him saying, I know you think this is dumb. I understand you don't value this, but you like science. Right? Do it. Let's do a scientific experiment. Do it. Let's see what happens, say the result. Yep. And honestly it made such a fundamental change in my ability to get things done faster in the it lessened conflict.
[00:17:37] Lauren: I got to decisions easier. Mm-hmm and so for me, this is when I started to say, okay, you know what? Empathy and emotional management is a skillset. It's a tool belt and just like learning anything else. This is something that's not just warm and fuzzy. It has a lot of value.
[00:17:53] Heath: Okay. Yeah. Very good.
[00:17:54] Heath: And I, I, I'm a big, big fan of that. You've been on a, a few projects there where I even the last client. They'd already thought they'd have a vision. It wasn't it was an objective. I said, no, what you need is a vision. What actually the business will look like in five years time there's method to that strategies, objectives measure
[00:18:13] Heath: So you can measure our progress towards it. But the people we put this together have to be from the business because they're looking for the, the why w the what's in it for me, the w I, I, him, the radio station, they can all tune into, well, they, all, everyone buy default changes and they said, no, no, no, never got this
[00:18:27] Heath: I said, you watched this. I said, have you done this kind of program before? And they said, well, not to this scale. And I said, how'd you go on the last one? Well, not too good. I said, now you're gonna do a bigger program doing it the same way that you did it before. Who's gonna get what a different result. I got news for you
[00:18:41] Heath: It's gonna get the same result, but this time the impact's gonna be worse because you're doing something you've never done before. And then I said, so how do you propose? And I was told, I said, the reason why we're gonna get the business in here to help put that together, this vision is gonna be the voice to represent their views on this, on this vision.
[00:18:57] Heath: So it answers that w IFN and they go, but why is that important? I said, because when people start saying, it's not in for me, they'll tune out and they'll just cross their arms and say, oh, just wait for you guys to finish what you're doing. And then I'm gonna go back to how it was before, and this is what will happen.
[00:19:11] Heath: And they say, well, that's what happened last time. Is it? Yeah.
[00:19:14] Lauren: Well, of course, yeah. They'll tank it on purpose, right? Oh yeah. Yeah. I seen that.
[00:19:18] Heath: Yeah. Yeah. Tank on purpose. Yeah. Oh, Yeah. That's the what it's like putting the the proverbial sticking fork in the spokes yeah,
[00:19:30] Lauren: this doesn't work. And then the subtext is because I won't do it.
[00:19:34] Lauren: right.
[00:19:34] Heath: So, yeah. Yeah, yeah. The hidden . Oh, yes. Okay. Yeah. So that's, that was your awakening to to emotion as a empathy as a, as a a tool set as a a toolbox, a a skill set that you need to one, if you don't have a naturally, cuz you're not natural born transmitter develop it, but be conscious.
[00:19:57] Heath: Yeah.
[00:19:57] Lauren: So I think again, right, going back to people who are naturally born sometimes prioritizing production over people. Yeah. This developing an empathy tool set, which does not, honestly, in my opinion come very naturally to people with an analytical mindset. Right. It's it's somewhat counter oppos.
[00:20:12] Lauren: Yeah. To that. And so developing this is what I see take people from being like good or great, maybe even at what they do to being exceptional. And so one thing is people confuse this a lot. Compassion and empathy are not the same thing. Compassion means that you're feeling their feelings, you care deeply, right
[00:20:28] Lauren: You're, you're crying, you're bleeding for them. Like you feel it in the same visceral way. They do empathy. And I wore my empathy shirt today. Oh, is the ability to step into someone else's shoes in an effort to understand their feelings and their perceptions. And this is the most important part in an effort to drive behavior.
[00:20:48] Lauren: It is a skill. It is a tool. You're not just doing that. So you can say, oh, I, you know, feel bad for them. You're doing it to say, what, what is the root cause? Or what is the symptom of this behavior I'm seeing that I want to change. And so that's kind of the difference between compassion and empathy.
[00:21:04] Heath: Okay
[00:21:04] Heath: So compassion is that you can understand the feelings that someone is going through. Empathy is the ability to step into someone else's shoes to understand what they're feeling in order to, for a purpose to drive a particular behavior. That's correct
[00:21:20] Lauren: All righty. And if you're not naturally empathetic and you're not naturally compassionate, I'm gonna give you some tips, Uhhuh
[00:21:25] Lauren: And I'm also gonna let you know, you can fake it until you make it. Okay.
[00:21:30] Heath: Very good. It's helpful.
[00:21:32] Lauren: Yep. Yep. So a lot of these are gonna be around communication. Some of them are gonna be around some activities I'd recommend, so we'll do, we'll do the first set around communication. Yep. Absolutely
[00:21:43] Lauren: Fluff your emails. That's a term I like to use essentially, plus your emails fluff 'em that's right. Okay. People who are not analytical minded and not everyone you talk to will be don't interpret things the same way. If someone sent me an email, it might be something that said, Hey, this task is due by five
[00:22:00] Lauren: Are we on track? Right. That's a perfectly acceptable email to me. Yeah. Yep. To some people that's harsh and it's aggressive. And so, and especially if they're not on track. Yeah. So how that email might look fluffed is good morning. Happy Saturday. Just a friendly reminder that, that this task is due by 5:00 PM
[00:22:19] Lauren: Do you feel you need any support to get that completed or are you on track? Happy to help? However, I. Right. Yep. Yep. And so I take a general template there. There's always a nice greeting. There's always something we're celebrating, all reminders are friendly and we're always willing to help. We always end it with it.
[00:22:36] Lauren: We're willing to help because here's the thing. If we need that task from someone and they don't know how to do it, or aren't equipped to do it or aren't on track and we don't tell them we're willing to help, they may just ignore us if they need help. Right. They may just not do it.
[00:22:49] Heath: Yep. So, okay. That's one great thing
[00:22:51] Heath: A reminder and the offer to help. Yep. Okay. Very good.
[00:22:57] Lauren: The second is to always put business after people when you start a meeting. So this is actually kind of a cultural thing. So I'm from Northern Eastern America and in Southern Eastern America. There's a lot of culture differences. So Northern Eastern Americans like Pennsylvania, they're fast talkers, we're aggressive, fast talkers
[00:23:16] Heath: are in this, are you consider yourself a fast talker
[00:23:20] Heath: Yeah, you
[00:23:23] Heath: No, you are fast talker. You are very fast. Yeah, it's good. Yeah. Sorry about that. I can try to slow down. No, no, it's great. I, you know, like if you to New Zealand as an Australian or more so new Zealanders compared to let's say the English disrespect to my English college, you know, they Kiwis can talk, can talk fast
[00:23:42] Heath: Okay. So when you say Northeastern, so this is this is where you are right now. No, no. No, this
[00:23:46] Lauren: is no that's, that's where I grew up. So like like New York, Pennsylvania, like those types of states were aggressive, fast talkers Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, these types of states and the Southern Eastern Southern part of the United States.
[00:23:58] Lauren: They tend to be slower, more polite talkers. And again, that's not saying like people from the north mean people from the south are nice. It's just a cultural way. They communicate the cadence that they communicate with one another, the way they pause. What they talk about even. And so what I have found is if you put business after people in the start of a meeting that kind of resonates with everyone culturally, and it makes work seem small.
[00:24:22] Lauren: And so what does that look like? You might bring up the weather. I don't, because oftentimes I have people I'm talking to who are in an example, Minnesota with someone I was talking to one time and I said, oh man, it's it's cold today. And they said, oh yeah, it's cold here too. What temperature is it there
[00:24:39] Lauren: And I think I said something like 30 degrees Fahrenheit. And I think that's close to zero Celsius or something like that. But they said. It's negative 50 degrees Fahrenheit here. So, whoa, whoa. I tend to, I tend to stay away from weather. Cause I don't want people, you know, to feel bad about my sunny weather here in Florida
[00:24:57] Lauren: Yeah. But what that looks like is maybe talking about, you know, what you're planning to do later in the day asking people about their lives make the work smaller. When you do that, you humanize it. It makes what you're about to say seem less impactful because you're reminding people there's a life right outside of what we're talking about.
[00:25:14] Lauren: Mm-hmm and making the work smaller, putting the business after the people is a good step to both humanize yourself humanize the conversation and make anything you're about to deliver seem less
[00:25:24] Heath: intense. Okay. Very good. Now I I had a a former program director come and present to a new program that I was on
[00:25:32] Heath: And one of the, on his first introduction to a room of about 300 people, he started talking about his daughter and the pram and, and like I was going, this is a very interesting approach here. And then it had a lead into what we were talking, but he did spend some time talking about it and it was like very personable and it was like, and then it was.
[00:25:51] Heath: And everyone just, just brought down the and the formalities in the room of, oh, this is gonna be one of these executive presentations that we just gotta keep our upper, our nose up and turn up and, and, and say what we need to say. But it was like, oh no, he's one of us and everyone relaxed. And, and then everyone got along and then, you know, the normal informing storming thing and group dynamics and everyone got along great.
[00:26:14] Heath: And I was like, okay, very nice. I like it. And that's yeah. So that would've been the business after people. Yep. Okay. Nice one humanize it. Good
[00:26:24] Lauren: Yep. So people who do business transformation, right. We spend a lot of time thinking mm-hmm we're looking at things we're diving in. I have a former boss who we, we would talk about how we value always arriving at a meeting with a stance
[00:26:37] Lauren: And so meaning like, you already know what you feel, right? Yeah. Is the right process, the right solution. And a lot of people who do our type of work. Right. That's our job. Mm-hmm we approached it that way. And so I like to remind people to say, if, you know, the most say the least
[00:26:54] Heath: because you have to, you know, the most say the least
[00:26:57] Lauren: that's right
[00:26:58] Lauren: And that seems counterintuitive. Right. But you wanna give people time and the opportunity whose full-time job, this is not to catch up to where you are. Yeah. Because you can't pull people along, they've gotta get in the car themselves. Yeah. Can't drag, 'em behind can't lead host of water. That's right
[00:27:17] Lauren: And then some other things that you might wanna do in meetings is I like to ask questions rather than providing responses. So let's say that somebody brings something up we're doing we're brainstorming. Right. And we're, we're whiteboarding it out, putting things in parking lots. Right. And someone says I, we wanna do it this way
[00:27:38] Lauren: Right. Or this is the way we should do it. Yep. And, you know, right. Cause you've arrived at that meeting with a stance and you've reviewed all the facts that, you know, that is not what we're doing. You still write that on the board. Right. Cause that's part of it. But what you don't say is, Hey, I don't think we should do that.
[00:27:52] Lauren: Mm-hmm because of X, Y, Z, You ask a question, you say, Hey, how do you think we would handle the transition of this, to this? Let's play that out. And usually when you play that out and it takes several more minutes, right. Than just saying no people get there themselves. And so I oftentimes, you know, advise people, Hey, don't respond, inquire ask more questions
[00:28:16] Lauren: They'll get there themselves. People are logical. Even though they sometimes behave what seems IL logically and everyone assume everyone has good intent. Assume everyone wants work
[00:28:25] Heath: best. Yep. Okay. You know, I so, so ask questions as opposed to provide solutions. Yep. Yeah. That's as, yeah, I like that is that you gotta, you ask the questions like
[00:28:37] Heath: On the last client I said to them they had a lot of consultants come in and they were very keen to adopt whatever the consultants said. And I'd say, well, I've got a link coach. We've got a link coach. We've brought in this coach and we've brought in that coach in the six Sigma listen, and it's going okay.
[00:28:51] Heath: That's that's good then. That's nice. Okay. So now tell me, how are you going to use that? And they'll show me a massive presentation and I go, okay guys, you know, if we step back for a. You do know what we're looking at here, right? This, this presentation that you are basically basing everything on is two parts
[00:29:10] Heath: There's a commercial element to it. And then there's a marketing element to it. Now what you guys are doing now, if you are taking it as gospel, is that this is the Bible and we are gonna follow it to the letter. But I'm gonna be honest with you. This wasn't designed for you to pick up and do what you're doing.
[00:29:24] Heath: This was designed for, for the consultants to get more work. And so in order to do that, they must create something that's huge. And it's gonna glass for out for, for days and months and years. And if you didn't like it, you probably could scale it down to even just a year, but still is massive. So, so I recommend from, from this point in on, we are gonna adopt the new ways of working and we're gonna call it the modus operandi, operandi of the, our mode of operation, our standard method of operating, which is question the question.
[00:29:56] Heath: The first thing that we're gonna do is question the question and there includes even questioning me. So I'm not beyond reproach or beyond question. Now you questioned me because what you've just decided that you've got a lean coach and you're gonna, so what you've, what you're doing for a lean coach, you're optimizing all the absolute possibility of every single process, but you haven't asked why
[00:30:16] Heath: So what you're gonna, you've actually done for a look at your processes. You've, you've telling me that we can't touch certain processes, which are in scope, cuz you've already optimized them. But what you've actually done is just picked a handful that on paper virtually, not physically, that you have optimized in terms of a process, but what you've killed is the customer experience.
[00:30:34] Heath: So you have optimized to the eighth degree that you possibly could at a, at a cost of the customer experience. And you, on another hand, you said we, our customer experience is a priority. So no, one's questioning why you're doing things, something, so you, so those same thing is, is ask the questions as opposed to provide the solutions.
[00:30:54] Lauren: That's right. Everything comes with a cost too. Right? So you gotta figure out what people value.
[00:30:59] Heath: Everything comes at a cost. Yeah. Everything. Right. Everything comes at a that's great. This, I don't have any good quotes we've got now there's a few. Okay. Everything comes at a cost. That's right
[00:31:11] Lauren: Another thing in speaking especially if there's cultural differences is calm, measured positives because I'm a fast talker.
[00:31:18] Lauren: I oftentimes had to get really comfortable in silence. Yeah. And so I oftentimes will be quiet probably 10 more seconds longer. Depending on who I'm talking to then I normally would, so that I give people room to interject. And so that's another thing to keep in mind, especially again, if you've thought through all of this, if you're excited about it, if you have passion remember to give people space to talk calm, measured pauses, after everything
[00:31:42] Heath: you say, come measure pauses
[00:31:45] Heath: Yep. Yep. Okay. After everything 10 seconds or longer, are you calling this the uncomfortable pauses? Cause sometimes they are. I'm being
[00:31:52] Lauren: uncomfortable in silence. Yeah
[00:31:54] Heath: Yeah. Uncomfortable silence. That's right
[00:31:58] Lauren: Especially if you're a consultant, right. You're paid to talk essentially. You're paid to talk and think so when you're quiet people sometimes think they have to fill up all the noise
[00:32:06] Lauren: And you don't so yeah. And then two more in communication. So delayed. No delayed, no was by far the one that I was most skeptical of and I thought was gonna be just the dumbest . But it is actually really powerful. So what that means is if you delayed, no. If you, and this is, this is straight from Craig co, so I really gotta get him from credit for that
[00:32:27] Lauren: But what it is is essentially if you're gonna say no to something, if you know something is not the right solution, even if it's not in brainstorming, let's pretend you got an email. Wait on it, wait on the, no don't not respond cuz that's terrible. Respond and tell people you are thinking about it, even if you're not, even if you're already done thinking about it.
[00:32:47] Lauren: Um-huh . What this does is it helps people feel validated in their ideas. You are partnering with them, right. Even if it only took you 10 seconds to think through, you did think through it. Just tell 'em. Hey. Yeah, that is an interesting idea. Let me think about that. Let me go talk to some other people.
[00:33:06] Lauren: Let me work through what that might look like. And you might go back and ask more questions, right? Questions versus response. But you're gonna wanna delay that. No, and that doesn't mean days or weeks, right. You don't wanna do as at expense of the project. But as long as that decision equal to its like priority and urgency, some things will have to be delayed
[00:33:23] Lauren: No, in a few hours, some things can afford to be delayed. No, a few days, some things can be a week or more. Kind of just depends on your timelines. What the urgency of that decision is. Mm-hmm but delayed, you know, helps.
[00:33:35] Heath: build partner. Okay. So the objective there is the first they feel validated and then second, it helps them build a partnership, helps build a partnership between the stakeholders of business and, and the project transformation
[00:33:50] Lauren: Yep. And I remember my pushback to this was that's just gonna slow everything down. Mm. We all make better decisions. Right. When we've moved all nonsense off the table. Right. Let's put all the facts on the table. The fact is that's not gonna work. So getting to a know faster moves us forward faster towards what does work.
[00:34:08] Lauren: Right. So that's where my mindset was. And this was one of the most powerful things that I think I ever implemented. I saw drastic changes in the way people respond
[00:34:19] Heath: Okay. So, alright. Yeah. I'm on that same mine too. Well, with the, the previous client, they such a hurry. They had these arbitrary dates that they'd put in the calendar and I say, okay, so why we seemed
[00:34:32] Heath: They'd already gone out an RFP in the first, the first event they'd ever done on the project. No discovery, just straight out the RFP to go out for, for suppliers and go. Okay. So you've bought the business architect in to architect the future operating model, the target operating model. But the first thing you've decided to do is go out to RFP for your solution without understanding first the problem I said, oh no, no, we've done that.
[00:34:53] Heath: I said, I said, what did you do exactly? Oh, we sent a spreadsheet out to the business 1500 staff to ask, give, give us their problems. I said, wait, I said, how much are you spending on this? On the software a year? And I said, oh, it's gonna be around about 30 million over five years. Oh, I said about 6 million a year
[00:35:10] Heath: Okay. I'm gonna let you in a little secret, sending an email out to your staff and asking to fill out a spreadsheet about what the pain points are. The existing system is not how you do requirements for a 30 million. Pound system. And as they, I said, so why are you such a hurry to, to go for RFP right now, before we've ever saw the problem?
[00:35:30] Heath: Oh, because we've got these dates. I said, who's start, who's implemented these dates. Where's these dates come, oh, the guys upstairs. And I said, but what's the driver? Why are you, why are you going for, for out to these states that you've set is arbitrary. I said, how about we do this? There's a process to this and where you are right now.
[00:35:47] Heath: You like in my process, it's step five design. And the few steps before that step one is focus. Let's get on the same page, the vision what's in it for me, control governance, framework, design principles, current state benefits model, and then design. So you guys are in design already doing near that. I said, well, it's gonna take too long.
[00:36:06] Heath: I said, I tell you what's gonna happen here. You're gonna build a system based off the, the pain points that your business have given them. And what's gonna happen when they deliver this. Technology's gonna say. The business users are using the new system and they go, oh yeah. Oh, what does that, that problem that we had.
[00:36:22] Heath: Oh, but, oh, but that good stuff that we had is not here. I said, the reason why the good stuff's not there because you threw the baby out, the bath water, you didn't ask them what was working that you'd like to keep. You just asked them for the problems. See you, you guys are, and it's gonna take too long. I said, this is what's gonna happen.
[00:36:39] Heath: You're gonna waste 30 million pounds. You don't have 30 million pounds. Your competitors are eating up the market share. And you're trying to catch. and like, oh, oh. And I said, what do you recommend? And I said, we've gotta start a step one mate, and this, sorry, you know, you, you, and so what they decided then was to break down the RFP process into a few phases
[00:37:00] Heath: So I said, look, don't stop the RFP because you kicked it off, but don't make a decision. You know, you, you got a genuine features idea about what they want. Okay. Continue along those, but don't make a decision, let us catch up, carry our pretty model assessment, et cetera, and said, okay. I said, but if you, what you're doing to your point there is that you one, you've not built any, no partnership with the business, cuz you've just gone on from hurry technologies leading and not listening to us.
[00:37:24] Heath: So I like, okay. You know? No, I, well, we're on the same page here. That's great. Okay. Yeah
[00:37:31] Lauren: That's awesome. I'm glad you just weren't. You weren't like all these tips are terrible. Cancel the podcast. I'm just kidding. No, no,
[00:37:36] Heath: no, no, no, no. I hope to listen to getting a good, a lot of tips outta this.
[00:37:41] Lauren: Yeah, I have one more on communication
[00:37:43] Lauren: Yeah. Yeah. And then two more that are kind of just activities. So one more on communication. And I don't know why this works and if anyone in your audience is a PhD and does know like the theory behind why this works I'd love to hear it. I call this a, the Jedi mind trick when all else fails.
[00:37:59] Lauren: The I, yeah, it works like probably 70% of the time on decisions that are not like super, super, super emotional, right. It can't be you're you have to fire your whole staff. It can't be that decision. Or that news sometimes when I know that I'm gonna have to give someone in a leadership position or someone with authority news that we are gonna move forward because maybe another leader decided on the path.
[00:38:25] Lauren: Right. With something that they. I don't think they are gonna look favorably on mm-hmm I do this thing where I tell them how they feel. And it works an alarming percentage of the time. So what that might look like is, Hey Heath I have some news, I think you're gonna agree is really great for us.
[00:38:45] Lauren: Right. I just told you that we have good views. We're sharing. We're gonna move forward with the plan to deliver in June. And it's gonna deliver these benefits. I'm so glad I got to share this with you. Please. Let me know if you have any questions, right. Knowing, yeah. He didn't wanna move forward with the plan in June.
[00:39:03] Lauren: Yeah. Like 70% of the time. It is shock. I will get an email back or a response back that says, oh great. I'm so glad we're moving forward with that. It's almost like they don't remember. Yeah. Because I've told them that that was a good thing for them that they maybe weren't in favor of it. Yeah. Now it doesn't work for everything.
[00:39:22] Lauren: I can't be like, good news, Keith, you have to fire your whole department and everyone's redundant and I don't know what you do now. It doesn't work for that. Yeah. But for smaller scale decisions, like maybe one component of a process or a technology, they were fond of that someone else isn't a feature, right
[00:39:39] Lauren: It works like 70% of the time for some odd reason for those types
[00:39:43] Heath: of decision meetings. So it's like persuasive not negotiation, cause there's no negotiation there persuasive language or put mean assumed language. So if you are saying that first, you're giving them some good news and that and the relationship to their emotions is you are going to like it.
[00:39:59] Heath: So they've already, now they go, I, I must like it. So either there're gonna be two things, like be cautious in saying, let me see now. Or they go, okay. Or they dropped their barrier, their resistance, natural resistance to adversity, to change. And then, then you're gonna say what the plan is and say, we are going here to XYZ by so and so date.
[00:40:18] Heath: And then let me know. So assume effectively, if you was a salesman, you would've assumed the sale and said, let me know if you have any questions or not, not you specifically didn't say, let me know if you would like any changes. It says, let me know if any questions. And so it's like, okay. So we told 'em good news, told them that you're gonna, like, it told them what the plan was and asked them if they had any question
[00:40:41] Heath: Da that's
[00:40:43] Lauren: Yeah, I, Pete, I wish I knew why that works, but I have shared that with so many people and they'll look at me like, you're crazy to say, do it, just do it. And they do it. They're like that worked. And I'm like, I know, I don't know why it works. That wasn't a tip. Someone gave me, I just discovered that one
[00:40:59] Heath: day they taken mine trick.
[00:41:01] Heath: Okay, great. Yeah. Call it the Jedi mind trick. I ain't gonna be losing that on something probably today. yeah
[00:41:08] Lauren: Well, I hope it works for you. Let me know how it goes. Yep. The last two are activities. They're not communication. So if you're not naturally empathetic, if you don't I'm a little it may not come across here, but I'm a little socially awkward.
[00:41:19] Lauren: And so no, essentially. Yeah, little bit. Do I have my my Marvel Dr.
[00:41:23] Heath: Find it had to
[00:41:25] Lauren: Okay. Well, I've, I've a lot of growth right over the years a decade. But essentially I recommend people do two things. One, if you're coming in new to a department that you don't have, or an existing relationship with, or a client, right.
[00:41:37] Lauren: That you don't have an existing relationship with the staff you're gonna be interacting with. Right. Maybe not the leaders, but the staff. I recommend that people spend as much time, not just shadowing the processes that they're gonna be redesigning, but watching the interactions of the people. I think you talked about this in the beginning.
[00:41:54] Lauren: There's norms and subcultures, right? Yep. Yep. That exist inside companies. Mm-hmm and a lot of times. Watching how the staff talk to each other, the words they use, the cadence that they speak, how they schedule meetings, all that different kind of normative culture. Not only tells you what to expect with their leaders because people mirror their leaders
[00:42:14] Lauren: Mm-hmm when I have, when I do leadership topics, I always remind leaders that if you're seeing something in your staff that you don't like probably pick up a mirror, you're probably doing it. Because
[00:42:23] Heath: people mirror the beauty. That's another good one. People mirror their leaders
[00:42:27] Lauren: They do. I think this is actually a theory.
[00:42:28] Lauren: It's called mirror theory. People in incorporations mirror, their leaders, they act like their leaders give them permission to buy their own actions. Oh. And so kind of sitting with these people outside of analyzing what, what the processes are and trying to data mine, just to see how they interact as a culture, almost like an anthropologist helps you to then.
[00:42:49] Lauren: kind of assimilate into that same cadence of speaking, using words that resonate with them. Okay. Scheduling how they're used to. So it makes you seem less abrasive. It makes you more part of their normal stream of work Uhhuh . And that can go a really long way in building that kind of relationship and partnership and also understanding what they care about.
[00:43:09] Lauren: Right. That's that's part of empathy is understanding what's in it for them. Right. What they care about on a day to day basis, what they get passionate about and why
[00:43:18] Heath: okay. What is important theme? So the, so that there was the activity of if you were new to the department new, existing, no existing relationships with their.
[00:43:29] Heath: Is to basically assimilate and assimilate. And you said, observe, not just observe the process, which would, if you, if you were to give a, a new consultant, this and this activity to go and do, they would watch the process, but they wouldn't watch the interaction. Yeah. So, so what are you actually observing
[00:43:45] Heath: So the, that interaction, you talk about their, how they talk to each other at schedule meetings, et cetera. So. And why you're doing that is to basically become one of them to assimilate like them. Be one of them reduce that resistance. This is like when I go into programs that we will get, try and seconder someone from the business to be on our core team.
[00:44:05] Heath: And partly that is as opposed to consultants coming in and doing the transformation for them, but bringing the, the really senior stakeholders who become champions change champions onto the project effectively are the business. Now, when the bus, this person that, that now our, our new name, it changed champion speaks to their own own people.
[00:44:24] Heath: It's one of it's like the business here is one of us. They are now let's us talking to us. So yep. Their, their their barrier of resistance is lower. So this is what you are saying here is if, if you are new to a program project and you don't have that relationship, this is what you should do.
[00:44:41] Lauren: Yep
[00:44:41] Lauren: And the best way to do that is actually asked to go to their team meetings. So not their process meetings. I always say, Hey, do you have like a, a monthly, a weekly core meeting for your team? They usually say yes. Right. And I say, I don't wanna be on the agenda. I just wanna go. I just wanna see how they talk to each other.
[00:44:57] Heath: The right one go to the team meetings. Yeah. Yeah. Cool.
[00:45:01] Lauren: The next activity. I call sit in the seat. And this is after this would be like, maybe someone comes to me, who's working right. Some kind of process. And they start telling me about behaviors. People are doing that's derailing things, Uhhuh such and such person.
[00:45:14] Lauren: Isn't showing up to meetings. They're not responding to my emails every time we're in a meeting they're being argumentative or they're not giving me what I need to get to what I'm I'm getting to. Right. These are things we deal with. Yep. But those are symptoms. Those are symptoms of a root cause
[00:45:30] Lauren: Mm-hmm . And so what I always try to remind people is, okay, you've brought me a ton of symptoms. Those symptoms are of some root cause that's probably rooted in emotion somewhere. Right. Mm-hmm emotions are facts about people. Yep. And what I want you to do is sit in her seat. So give me all the PO give me decision truth.
[00:45:50] Lauren: Right? Give me all the possible reasons. That she is displaying those behaviors and doesn't like, or is adherent or adverse right. To what you're trying to do. And then now that we've identified all the possible root causes, cuz you're not just gonna be able to go ask, why are you not coming to meetings
[00:46:06] Lauren: No, one's gonna tell you. Yep. Then you need to come up with mitigation tactics for how you would resolve every single one of those problems and go implement 'em until one works. Because the symptoms right. Are part of a problem. What do we do? We gotta go solve a problem. Yes. Gotta
[00:46:20] Heath: solve
[00:46:21] Lauren: the right problem.
[00:46:22] Lauren: Yep. And I call that sit in the seat because it requires you from, from taking a perspective of someone who's having those actions, hurting you, to being the person in the seat and all the reasons you might do, those things that person is doing. And again, that goes back to understanding what do they care about
[00:46:39] Lauren: How does this change impact them? Are you, you know, assimilating to their cultural norms? Like, what are you doing, right. That could be causing some of these actions and doing that kind of introspection.
[00:46:49] Heath: Okay. Alrighty. So that's that's sit seat is the approach is the activity and, and that is, that is another form of empathy to understand what they are doing in their role.
[00:47:00] Heath: You get the whoever's presenting the, the, the issues that are happening is that you're calling it out what it is, which I do. There's something similar about what you, those exactly, you know, we have to be careful of. Like technology probably the most, let's say maybe not the biggest victim of it, but maybe a bit more pro caught up by it is the urgency or the need to solve what the problem that they see, but the problem they see, isn't the root cause.
[00:47:27] Heath: It's the symptom of another one. Yep. Yeah. So that is so, so you get this, you know, the task will be to identify the root causes, come up to mitigation actions and implement them into one or many, or all of them were successful or, you know, started reducing those issues and say you're on the right track
[00:47:45] Heath: Yeah. And so, yeah, so what we, what we've done there is another tool in. . Yep
[00:47:53] Lauren: And again, right. Going back to you would do that. If you saw something inefficient in a process, right. You would drill all the way back through. This is just again, that cognition, that someone's emotions are facts about people.
[00:48:04] Lauren: It is part of the process. You have to do that same type of work. And the very last one I have, isn't a tip. It's just a saying that I like to say to my team and it's that you can be right. And be a delight. Those things are not mutually exclusive. Yeah. Just because you're right. Doesn't mean that you have to act a certain way
[00:48:23] Lauren: You can be right. And perfectly pleasant about it.
[00:48:26] Heath: okay. Yeah. This is. That is so much about people and the way that you behave with them and interact with them, right? Yeah. So you can be right. And, and a delight. So there's no, yeah, like I think, you know, I'll pick on technology again and there's no one in the tech in the room here to, to it's not nice when people can't defend themselves, so I won't be nasty, but they would go and say with their technology hammer, go and bang people over the head because it's, everything is a technology problem now
[00:48:54] Heath: And it's like, well, no, it's not. But what you are doing is, you know, you are almost, you are beating people over the head. If you're technology stick, it's like, well, see how many you step back and you, technology might be an answer, but don't beat people over the head with it. Yeah. Okay. That's exactly right.
[00:49:11] Heath: Yeah. Yeah. So, okay. So then that's the empathy part again? Yep.
[00:49:17] Lauren: That is all my tips and tricks about empathy. And I actually would be really interested if any of your users or your users. I do technology . If any of your listeners implement any of these I'd love to hear did they have success with that?
[00:49:29] Lauren: Did they not, again, not a scientific study. I'm not a PhD. This has just been my experience going from. You're the reason that my children don't feel that they have a mother to, you know really successful large scale transformations, right. Taking things, new products to market. So kind of, you know, the dichotomy between those two things to me is you know, a little bit seasoned expertise, but also right.
[00:49:53] Lauren: A lot of implementing these types of emotional management and empathy tool.
[00:49:57] Heath: Okay. Yeah. So, so for the listeners there, if you are implementing one or all, or some of these tips, then yeah. Give us some feedback, put the comments in the, in the, in the comment section, then we'll feed them back out to Laura
[00:50:10] Heath: Okay. So that's empathy now, the industry, what is the industry doing? That is, you know, it's, it's trail blazing. It's doing a great job yet. Keep doing it or I can lessons learn. Right. And what are you doing? It's not working stop doing what are you not doing? Start doing.
[00:50:28] Lauren: Yep. Okay. So I think something that the industry and, and in both of these cases, I'm actually gonna talk to the, the decision makers likely to C-suite
[00:50:36] Lauren: Yeah. So for those of you, if you're listening and you happen to be in the C-suite of my corporation don't take it out on me. This is just helpful feedback. So not necessarily a, you know, an implication of you
[00:50:46] Heath: not talking to you, John and Mary and , that's correct. Not
[00:50:50] Lauren: talking specifically to you
[00:50:51] Lauren: Yeah. Just in general what I'm seeing. Yeah. So something, I think that C-suite leaders and the industry is doing well in general is a recognises that the nature of innovation is risk and that innovation is necessary. So, yep. People are very comfortable, like you said in homeostasis change is uncomfortable
[00:51:08] Lauren: And so this kind of recognition, I think by the industry and the C-suite that if we're standing still we're really falling behind yep. Is great. And I think we've seen a ton of progress, especially in the tech sector because of that, right. New products going to market people, really getting innovative our lives
[00:51:25] Lauren: You know, even in the last five years have changed drastically with the things we saw come out of COVID right. Not even just in the health tech space, but in, you know, the combined tech space mm-hmm and I've seen people really embrace a lot of that innovation and kind of recognize that, you know, you have to put some chips on the table to propel forward and now that kind of everybody who's has a cognition of that we're seeing rapid acceleration
[00:51:47] Lauren: Yeah. And I think that's really
[00:51:48] Heath: good. Mm-hmm and as a result of that with. Innovation become, becomes change and change. And to the degree of change and minor to large scale and transformation then comes, impacts the organization and then people in it. And then that would become, okay, innovation is great and we need it it's necessary
[00:52:08] Heath: And we are in an environment where technology is changing rapidly. Yeah. Businesses are changing, but if you don't get the people in the organization to change with the, or the speed of the innovation, one is gonna get left behind the innovation may or may not get to the full value, realize the full value that intended in the beginning
[00:52:30] Heath: So it brings us back to the full circle gear
[00:52:33] Lauren: It does. It does. And also as a plug for why people should hire Heath. Right. right. More transformation
[00:52:40] Heath: more work yeah.
[00:52:42] Lauren: And then the thing I think that is getting missed in this process is something that I'm really passionate about and it's that authority and expertise are not the same thing and they should not be the same thing.
[00:52:54] Lauren: Yeah. I don't know if you have experienced this out in the field or not, or, or if this resonates or will resonate with your audience. But in recent years I feel like what I'm seeing is every project because it's innovative in the most cases and people are trying to do rapid, large scale change.
[00:53:10] Lauren: Mm-hmm, , it involves a lot of divisions and departments and coordination. Yep. And what I see happen instead of having a traditional sponsor or lead or decision maker, I'm seeing a council of decision makers, Uhhuh sometimes, you know, five to 10 people. And I don't know about you Heath, but have you ever seen five to 10 people?
[00:53:31] Lauren: Right. All agree exactly. To the same thing. Yeah. And I think it comes from a really great place. Right? Assuming positive intent. Yes. It comes from this recognition that you have to be able to understand and sit in the seat, so to speak, right. Of all these different domains and expertise, they wanna consider all the facts and data.
[00:53:50] Lauren: Yes. And they wanna make sure they have that organizational alignment top down so that the integration itself is easier. Mm-hmm but expertise should not equal authority. Great. Have them all involved, have them all bought in and engaged. You have to have a central, a authoritative leader. One person needs to be able to say, I have examined all the data and expertise
[00:54:17] Lauren: This authority for decision is mine. And it's the path we move forward. And if not one, three, because sometimes I see people do two and that doesn't work either. Yeah. Yeah. So it's not one, three, but not five to 10 experts. Should not expertise is not authority. It's just
[00:54:35] Heath: not okay. That's a great tip there
[00:54:38] Heath: I hope that that should not have fallen on be ears wherever you are in the world. Whoever, whatever continent, including Antarctica, the, that is a in, in my approach, we have a three tiered governance framework. You take it from the project to the, a authority group solution design authority group made up of business and technology.
[00:54:58] Heath: And that will go to steerco. And the steerco is chaired by one person. There's many people in there, steerco. And that, that, yeah, that, that authority is by one person. And I like that if it's not one, three, because two there's a, it's a, that's a, what would you call it? Two doesn't work. Yeah. Mexican, Mexican stand off
[00:55:16] Heath: It's like, okay, either you die or I die. And so, well, we're both gonna die at the same time, so or three. So yeah. So then there will be, you'd like to think a majority rules, but you're not five to 10. Otherwise you, that is a. Decision by committee. And I think government agencies or governments, agencies, and bodies, a victim of this that a lot of decisions are decision for the way committee and the reasons why they don't make any decisions because there's too many people involved in those decision making process.
[00:55:44] Lauren: Right. And I think one of the things that they lose in that process is it's not to exclude at everyone, anyone from the table, everyone should be at the table. Oh yeah. But there's a cost to how long that decision takes every minute. That a decision. I mean, that's dramatic every day, week, right? Yeah. A decision isn't made to move forward variables that led to that decision being the best one change, change.
[00:56:07] Lauren: Yeah. Other people go to market technologies, emerge, departments, change, people change, everything is changing. Yeah. Yeah. And so it's almost like they've recognized the nature of innovation is risk and we should make decisions that are data driven. Right. Mm-hmm and we have to consider all the variables, but they've lost that the variables change the longer we wait, they haven't prioritized time to decision
[00:56:31] Heath: It is a, there are so many quotes here. Lawrence ridiculous. The, the nature of innovation is. I like that one about, yes. The, the, the variables that led to taking a, a recommendation to a board for a decision that time delay impacts those variables. So the longer you sit on it, those variables change, those recommendations are now out of date and yeah
[00:56:52] Heath: So the longer then that becomes bigger risk
[00:56:55] Lauren: Yeah. Yeah. I mean one, right. That if people don't believe that I'll give you one really tangible example. Cost of it, development dollars we have seen right. Technology changes. Right. So if you need a developer, that's got a specific stack right. In their repertoire.
[00:57:10] Lauren: Or there's a new emerging technology. One that's already gonna cost you money. Yeah. And two, what we saw through, throughout COVID was just an inflation through the roof of it dollars. Yeah. So that's a great example. It might have cost you a million dollars, nine months ago. It might cost you three now
[00:57:26] Heath: So yeah, you set on it now. It's gonna cost you, so your innovation, although it's gonna solves all the problems just cost you an arm and league. Yep. Yeah. Okay. So, wow. That was awesome. That was awesome. Okay. So that's that's, that's true. That is the, that's what the industry is not doing well, well doing well, is that there was okay.
[00:57:48] Heath: The, the tap in the hat. So you, innovation is required. The next part is okay. Now you've got the innovation you are now mistakenly. Unfortunately, this authority for expertise and to assist with that is the one or three, or definitely not one or three decision makers. Definitely not five to 10. Yes. Yeah.
[00:58:07] Heath: Okay. Good one. Alrighty. So, okay. So, so recap there, I'm not sure if I can, I'll be writing notes frantically and seeing if I've put my head down, I'm writing away for, for total disclosure, everything there is the transcript. So, so the listeners that the transcripts on the website and then the show notes will put the links to to Lauren, to, to your profile on LinkedIn, to the company.
[00:58:29] Heath: Any of the any, if we can find, I'm not sure you see Craig code, do we need to is it min, do we wanna tip a hat to him and drop us a link? We can put his link there. And then some quotes, we find the sources other than yourself who, someone who have also said, I didn't
[00:58:42] Lauren: knowingly plagiarize anybody,
[00:58:44] Heath: but who knows?
[00:58:45] Heath: yeah, yeah, no, no, there are some really good ones. So yeah, we'll quote you on those that we'll put them in the end, the show notes. Okay. Just to summarize then if I can, if I can do half a good job, we, we talked about one was the profile of a of a business transmitter. Empathy is a tool set. And then industry, what are they doing?
[00:59:02] Heath: Right. And wrong and straight off the bat that you said, basically, if you are not born this way, forget about it. You're you're dead in water. No, no. You said it's not what I said to your, what you would, you know, you said earlier about again you know, there's the. So the analytical becoming their purpose over people that that was what I was using as an example there of you know, just taking the piss basically.
[00:59:29] Heath: So, no, you said that as is a skill set that is leaders are born and as you can develop a skill set, but naturally born new evidence you showed or talked about that. Yes, you do see it. And the children that the, then the, the, their behavior in their, in the playground who naturally are trying to, you know, they see their holistic that the end to end the full system.
[00:59:48] Heath: They try to get organized the chaos. I dunno if I was one of those. I think if I asked my mum, I think might have been Okay. What else we talk about there? The thought patterns. Yes. They see things as terms of systems and wanting to break things down. There's a particular mindset. That's production over people.
[01:00:03] Heath: The, the caution there is people can mistaken in that is disrespective or not acknowledging the, the people elements of it, but that's not the focus it's the, the, the production is in service of the people. There are, yeah, some great antidotes there about yeah, the, the reason why it has to be other than was it then no other or there not such not the, the biggest event, the, the change can't be a major event if you are What did you say
[01:00:32] Heath: The Jedi
[01:00:32] Lauren: mind trick? You mean when you do the Jedi mind trick? It can't be,
[01:00:36] Heath: it can't be major, major. Ah, okay. Alright. Yeah. So what do we say? Small that's I was gonna give an analogy of when you talked about the production over people and, and the way that you you, you had been, might been told off or been pulled over Kohls for, and, and project I was on, but as I say to guys on the course and, and my, my stuff, is that just be, you.
[01:00:59] Heath: We're have an agenda to follow a process, to follow and has a Pacific, a Pacific reason, a Pacific purpose that we're not doing, not creating a cottage industry of activity. It's only for a specific outcome and each is an architecture building box. They build on each other. Now what you may find is the client may have a need to go chase in a Mirage on horizon
[01:01:19] Heath: Now what will happen is if that's not in our roadmap of activity, what will happen after this so-called fire that you've been told to go put out, has now been put out the attention's gonna come back to you about, oh, you told us this plan, and then you had these milestones, but you haven't done them.
[01:01:36] Heath: And the reason why you haven't done them is because you were told to go put out these fires, these fires that were really meaningless were a distraction. And you talked about before about when people. Will intentionally try to make a project fail, see that there will be an example of you being distracted, being pulled off to another direction.
[01:01:54] Heath: Yeah. Just be mindful of that. Have your plan stick to the plan. Okay. So yeah, you have some other antidotes. One of them included the M and a integration with people, the emotional management mindset was in there. And it's you talked about about your experience with the role and promotion. And they said, well, there was about people may panic and that was the the, a lightning for you, like, okay
[01:02:17] Heath: There's something I need to pay attention to. And then you got ahold of your, your mentor, Craig co Craig co to get it right. Not Greg. Yep. Craig. Okay. Yep. And you gave some great tips. I think this is a great quote here about your emotions are facts about people that it's, that's a evidence base. And I think if you are like, you're analytical will come from the, you, you call em the stem careers that you might as cuz you're not trained in, in that way
[01:02:43] Heath: You're train the technically in hard in solid, solid, structured tools and techniques that you may miss these, these softer skills and totally disregard them. But no, you should pay attention to them. What to say, this is the, the scientific if you wanted to have scientific and evidence based, and that was what you did yourself, right?
[01:03:01] Heath: You, you tested it and you saw the results. As, and I think that was the call that you set out to the, the audiences. If you wanna see for yourself, do test, you know? Yep. Yeah. What do you have to lose? Oh, absolutely. Yeah, nothing. Okay. And he he's talked about going good to great. And I thought of that.
[01:03:19] Heath: Is it not Jim RO? There's a book good to great. Or great to good. So it's Jim Collins, Jim Collins. Good to great. And he's got a couple quite similar that he's taken into business from, you know, here, here, transformation. You talked about the difference of compassion versus empathy, which I think to the uninitiated could be easily confused as one.
[01:03:38] Heath: And the same compassion being feelings, as opposed to emotion is the ability, empathy, the ability to step into someone else's shoes to understand how they feel for a particular purpose. And that purpose is to change behavior. Yep. Okay. We talked about, oh, the communication fluff, the emails. Now there's a structure to the fluffing, the emails.
[01:03:59] Heath: You are keeping it, first of all. There's a greeting you're friendly. And then there's a, there's a, there's an offer for help. And always that offer for help so that they feel that they are not on their own, that there is support. And particularly that they will come back to you and when they do need you, they will ask or they do need support.
[01:04:19] Heath: They will actually ask for it. Cause then what you'll have is they will avoid you, which you don't wanna do. And the other part was the business after people. So the, the people element first in your in your communications. So that was an effect of that is to humanize their interaction, the communication
[01:04:39] Lauren: yep.
[01:04:39] Heath: the work small. That's the words make the work small. Okay. And then the other part of us business transformators do a lot of think. So, and so going into the meetings, we go into these meetings because we've thought ahead of time that we have a particular stance on the outcome of those meetings, but like technology, you shouldn't run around with your technology.
[01:05:01] Heath: Second bang people over the head there's to go in there to listen and you go in there by asking questions. Yeah. So you might wanna remind them if, you know yeah. If you know the most, your quote, say the least. Yep. I think there's something I'm not sure who sits out there. You got a mouth one mouth, two, two ears that you use them in that proportion
[01:05:24] Heath: Yep. Okay. And then ask questions as opposed to provide solutions, which. For some coming from a technical there's there's stem careers may be almost a paradigm shift because, and, and, and those also new to consulting is like, well, we've been asked for answers, we're gonna give them. And I, I, I, I talked about in my book and talked about, you know, a good consultant.
[01:05:47] Heath: Isn't one that has all the answers. They have all the questions. And so you, our, our, well, I believe in going through the and business lead transformation is the people closest to the pain or the people, people close to the process are those that know how best to change it. What they don't know is how to change it.
[01:06:04] Heath: So the skill is in the business transformation to get those answers outta them. And so that is the questions that you ask. And, and then, so those, the, the, the, the more skill, I think you alluded to it and from a junior to you know, more experienced is that you ask the right question, you can ask the least questions to get the, the most, the correct, or the most leverage out of the answers you get
[01:06:27] Heath: As of you've got five minutes, some cases, and if you're lucky but longer, so your questions that you ask have to be on the money. That's right. Okay. And then you talked about. The calmed measured pauses, which can be uncomfortable silences, but necessary silences that allow that speaking, that, that thinking space for your audience, that they can allow them to catch up.
[01:06:51] Heath: Cuz you've you are a thinking person and you've done this before or more familiar with it. You know, the process that from the, and like the guys in BAU, in business who you're helping change, they might not have the space to step back to, to think about it. So have those pauses and what that means in practices allow 10 seconds.
[01:07:10] Heath: So, and don't be afraid of those 10 seconds and delayed, no thinking about you would reply to. You're thinking, think, you know, instead of automatically replying note as that you reply and say, I'm thinking about it, whether you might have already consciously unconsciously already made that decision. So, and that helps from the people's perspective, the empathy is that you have validated their think, their thinking and feelings that you are, and, but you can delay it.
[01:07:35] Heath: Then there was the caveat was the delay of delay it to the point of where it's not detri to the project. Yeah. Yep.
[01:07:42] Lauren: Okay. Proportional to its priority
[01:07:46] Heath: proportional to priority. Exactly. So I talk about context and, and, you know, like I. Guys calling me Heath, I'm trying to apply your book to the framework, to the, your framework, to the letter
[01:07:57] Heath: And I said, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. You know, it's proportion proportion to your situation to your client. This is not made or written to be applied through the letter, to the book for anyone. It is your skill to apply two things, proportionately and appropriately. So yeah, so that, that is there proportional to the context.
[01:08:16] Heath: And another part that helps is it helps build the partnership you had. The number seven was the jetty mindset, the Jeti mindset, the jetty, the Jeti mindset that I, I like this approach. This is where you are. You are telling them we've got some good news and they're gonna like it. Yeah. I love that.
[01:08:34] Heath: It's like, I'm gonna go to the re to a restaurant tonight and then say to play the Jeti mindset on the waiter. you're gonna tell the chef he's gonna change it and he's gonna like it yeah. Yeah. Okay. And And you're telling them what you are doing. You're going ahead with the plan and let me know if you've got any questions as opposed, any changes.
[01:08:55] Heath: So, very specific about now you've liked it. I've got some good news, so you're happy and you're gonna like it. So you agree, and this is the plan. So now, you know, and then if you've got any questions you can say, but you're most likely won't okay. Yep. So, and then, so, so a couple of activities is if you are new to a project program and you don't have that personal operational level relationships is to build that
[01:09:20] Heath: So how you build that is assimilate with, with the, the, the business. You are observing the process. And as I said, that's not just observing the end to end process, but interaction, as you said of how they interact with each other, as well as including how they schedule calls meetings. And then what we have there, we had.
[01:09:38] Heath: And you go to team meetings and then you have to sit in the seat and sit in the seat was to understand and the sit in the seat is where you see some behavior that is detrimental to the project, which is in most cases, a symptom of some other, cause that cause being the root cause while you wanna get down to the root cause
[01:09:56] Heath: So the activity there is, is to come up with some mitigation actions and implement them and see which one is working and then, you know, like any MVP or pilot double down and finish it off. Okay. Okay. All right. And then what do we have there, if you are right. You can be right and be a delight. So more quotes there
[01:10:14] Heath: Okay. So you don't have to be like technology. I told you. So and then, so what the industry is doing well is they are great with innovation. What, so that no it's necessary. And innovation comes at a cost. There is, well, there is risks involved. One being that if you get it one, you get it wrong. And you, you go off in the wrong direction.
[01:10:32] Heath: One other thing is if you've got a some project that you need transformation you to implement and it's slow, then of course you're gonna miss it. Yep. The other one, the, the, the thing that the industry is not doing, the two parts authority is, and expertise are not the same thing. Yeah. So then I think that is, and then an example of the previous client, there is, we've got a lean expert
[01:10:53] Heath: We've got a safe expert and say yes. And, and so there's follow up to that was well, actually talking to the experts. There was, well, it's used over there and it's used in lot, so and so, so yeah. Great. How is it gonna be used here? I'm less interested in how it's used there. I'm once in how it's used here.
[01:11:16] Heath: So that's, instead of it just taking the, the so-called expertise, it's like, yeah. Okay. Now you've got the, you know, you are able to tell me about how it's used, but how are we going to use it here? Now? I said our note, a mode print mode of op operandi modus operandi. I, I, we adopted back back. There was, we will now question the question.
[01:11:38] Heath: So, so question the question straight off the bat. No more adopting, whatever was said. Okay. And the last one, if I've got this right, was assuming everyone has good intentions and the decision making authority is that you only wanna have one or three, but not five or 10. That's
[01:11:56] Lauren: right. Can't never get to a decision
[01:11:59] Lauren: You did a great job, Keith
[01:12:01] Heath: summarizing. Great. I think did I sum it up? All right. Yeah, it's perfect. Oh, fantastic. Okay. Okay, Lauren, thank you very much. What I'll do now? This will, this will go live hopefully very, very soon. What, I won't say the date, but we'll say soon, you know, that's a, that's a classic project manager meant okay
[01:12:19] Heath: Soon. Yeah. When do you want it? Yep. So that'll go soon. I'll let you know when it's live or the show notes will be there links to get in touch with you and all your background. Yeah, we all be there and the quotes and everything else.
[01:12:30] Lauren: All right. Thanks. So appreciate it.
[01:12:33] Heath: Okay. Catch you later.
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Hi, I’m Heath, the founder of HOBA TECH and host of The Business Transformation Podcast. I help Business Transformation Consultants, Business Designers and Business Architects transform their and their clients’ business and join the 30% club that succeed. Join me on this journey.