This post is part of a continuing series that is exploring my Five Steps to Create Change. These steps serve as a foundation for anyone who is looking to create impact on an issue that they are passionate about. They are what I have observed and researched throughout my 15 years of working with change agents nationwide.
To recap, to begin any change making endeavor, you need to first identify the problem, solution, and your plan. After you create that initial game plan, you need to bring in your first set of partners and have them provide their input on how to make your actions even better. This can be by refining your goals and objectives, and ensuring an open flow of communication and idea sharing.
After you get your engagement plan set, the next step is ensure your team is growing, strong, and ready to go. Here are some things to keep in mind during this step.
This is a team effort
You’ve got your team together, and you’ve been ensuring that they are an integral part of your plan. They’ve helped you shape your plan, now its time to shape them to be the leaders and first followers. Creating change can’t be a one person job – in fact, it’s impossible to do it all on your own. Here’s how to make your team strong.
Keep Them Involved
To ensure your team feels like they are part of your master plan, you need to keep them involved in every aspect. Their involvement will make them feel like they are not just passengers on this ride, but co-pilots helping guide the journey. When you involve your team, you empower them.
When you are working on a project that is so near and dear to you, it is hard to let others in. People are following you on this path because they trust you and your vision – you need to trust them in return. Don’t fear that they will try and steal your glory, because that’s not what you’re working toward – you’re working toward creating monumental change, and for that to happen, you need your team to propel it.
Include them In decisions
This one is big. Any decision you make regarding your project needs to include your team. Leaders don’t ignore the insight of their followers, they embrace it. You need multiple view points to make sure what you’re doing will impact people. You may feel your ideas are the best ones, but I can guarantee that if you listen to your team you will improve them, or discover even stronger ones.
Leaders + Followers
Understand that without followers, there is no leader. Nurture your first few followers because they will be the ones who show the others how to follow. Never take your followers for granted – without them, you’re alone. Leadership is over glorified, followers are what creates a movement.
Creating change isn’t easy – it takes a lot of hard work, passion, and tenacity. If you are looking for more help on your project – like training or consulting – please feel free to contact me to see how I can be of service.