SPACE-FIRE9“Every amateur epistemologist knows that knowledge cannot be managed.”

— David Jonassen

Change, like knowledge, cannot be managed.  If we remember that everything is in motion – markets, organizations, people – trying to manage change is like trying to hold water in your hands.

Organizations that have “change management” or “organizational effectiveness” initiatives typically develop a strategy to implement change across the enterprise. The successes of these efforts are usually limited because the approach is:

  • One-dimensional: Directed towards a single goal (e.g. employee retention or technology adoption)
  • Coercive: The change is “pushed” out or down throughout the organization
  • More strategic than relational: The energy and trust between people and parties must be conducive to shifting

We don’t want to discount the importance of strategy. It’s important to be adept at planning, but it takes more than a plan to cooperate with change and guide it in generative directions. Rather than “change management” we like to think of it as “shift facilitation.”

Canopy Gap helps organizations transition into new ways of working together through experiencing a shift in relationship and perspective. Participation in the shifts leads to more energy, creativity, engagement, and impact. The process of shifting occurs through facilitating conversations between groups – teams, partners, customers, etc, – as well as through working through projects together (prototyping) that are representational or integral to the shift, and finally through one-on-one discovery sessions with individuals.