My Personal Vision

I am re-inventing myself both from a personal and work perspective; in this post I share my vision for working with clients and partners.

Personal and Organizational Transformation

My main goal is to work as a change agent in the world at large to support people and organizations in transformation.

On the left of the photo we have individuals undertaking the hard work of personal transformation: learning and growing; shedding the baggage of our pasts. This is very hard and rewarding work. I have been getting more involved in this as evolve as a coach. Stay tuned for upcoming posts on the work of Brene Brown to learn more.

The core of the photo shows the daunting challenge of organizational change. It is like attacking the ramparts of a castle: climbing up the ladders to effect organizational change is not for the faint of heart. The rewards – of liberating people and companies – is commensurate with the challenge. My purpose is to add safety and capability to this challenge.

It is my belief and understanding that personal transformation precedes organizational transformation. Leadership by example is required for success.

Consulting to be 10% Better?

In Gerry Weinberg’s Secrets of Consulting, a good consultant never promises more than a 10% improvement since it would imply that the management of the organization doesn’t know what they are doing. A kinder view that I adopt is that many organizations are not ready for personal and organizational transformation. In these cases, I am happy to help them get a 10% improvement and support curiousity about larger improvements. Siraj Sirajuddin’s approach of Supplication is about appreciating each person, client, organization for where they are at now.

In the photo at left, one can see the consultant applying tools to help the machine. The large monkey is the 800 pound gorilla of organizational inertia that is to be respected.

Organizational Structure to Support Vision

The rather intricate model in the photo (left) depicts my future state organizational structure to support the vision outlined above. It has two main parts: the people and the culture.

In the foreground, we see that success is enhanced by a core group that works closely with each other. Of course the number follows Luke Hohmann’s rule, “More than 8, no collaborate.” Everyone is wearing red to denote alignment to a compelling shared vision. Like a cross-functional Scrum team, skills and talents will vary. Beyond this group is a wider circle (heads on ground) to support this group.

At the back, we have the tree of culture. At it’s highest, we see that there is balance between individuals in the organization. I see this along the lines of WorldBlu (democracy for the workplace) or culture guides such as Valve that are about self-accountability. Other elements:

  • Red flower is for compassion and caring
  • Net is for safety
  • Wand is for passion and purpose
  • Monkey is for me – helping the world connect with play
  • The lion is for courage to do the right thing

Alternatives to create Organizational Structure

An open question for me is how to realize my future state organizational structure. The diagram above shows three possible ways for me to achieve this.

I can continue to work as an independent but invest time and energy into building a close network of partners who share my vision. (Shown on left)

I can build a regional consultancy with others. (bottom)

The third option is to join an existing organization that is compatible with my vision. Some candidates are Agile42 and NuFocus. (on right)

What’s Left?

Lots. My goal for the next six months is to explore relationships and do some safe-to-fail experiments to test out these alternate structures.

Michael K Sahota guides and teaches leaders how to create high-performance organizations. He is the creator of a proven system for leading change through a practical playbook. His model for Consciously Approaching Agile guides the creation of a cultural and leadership context where Agile drives lasting organizational results. As a Certified Agile Leadership (CAL) Educator with the Scrum Alliance, Michael has taught hundreds of leaders on a worldwide basis.

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