Is Your Platform Really Burning?


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You know this already…

We respond to change differently.  There are lots of different categorisations, but we are usually described in groups a bit like this…

  • Dangerous to know — The gung-ho mob, they will try anything.  A bit like my idiot brother.
  • Have a go – Once they see that the coast is clear, they are quick to pile in.
  • Wait and see — Sensible and dependable, think of an accountant.
  • If I must – Think of an accountant’s accountant.
  • Kicking and screaming – Admit it, we have all been there.

My categories aren’t too scientific.  You can find a more detailed (and politically correct) description of each group’s characteristics here or here, but no doubt you get the idea.

Here is something marginally more thought-provoking

The proportions of people in each group are often demonstrated like this:

Normal Curve

Most of us sit in the middle, firmly on top of the fence.  Which sort of makes sense, in a somewhat unscientific way, but this is still not new news.

And here is the thing that made me think

Earlier this week it was pointed out to me that the curve changes

If you are trying to persuade people to do something that is desirable, like trying a new “never fails” diet… the shape of the curve (or maybe speed of adoption) moves upwards

High Curve

If you are trying to persuade them to do something that is a somewhat more disagreeable, say Morris Dancing, the shape of the curve moves downwards.

Low Curve

But it’s not just desirability that influences people:

How about adding to the mix…

  • Ease - is the change simple or complicated?
  • Compatibility - does it match your lifestyle?
  • Risk – can you test and learn from the experience without too much downside?

All of which will effect how quickly people change.

But maybe most importantly of all, how about awareness?

Is your platform really burning if nobody ever sees it?

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 Burning Platform

Read another opinion

Image by Kevin Buehler

Republished with author's permission from original post.

James Lawther
James Lawther is a middle-aged middle manager. To reach this highly elevated position he has worked for many organisations, from supermarkets to tax collectors and has had multiple roles from running a night shift to doing operational research. He gets upset by operations that don't work and mildly apoplectic about poor customer service.


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