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Change Designs


September 2013
Practical expertise @ work.
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Leadership at work

Become a leader who leads.


This newsletter is dedicated to those leaders who are far more than their titles. They are authentic people who lead in a way that gets the best out of their teams, and produces the best results for their organizations.

Our first article continues with our series on authentic leadership. This time we look at the topic of values - and how they can be used to guide authentic leaders. Then we look at the opposite of authentic. How some leaders pretend to do the most important leadership role - that of strategy. Instead of creating a tool to guide their teams, they tick off items on a checklist. They hide behind the form of a retreat rather than doing anything of substance. An area where ineffective leaders cannot hide for long is project management. Here the level at which project managers work, can be confusing. Anton van den Berg explains the differences between portfolio, program & project management.

In our member zone, we continue with our 'Step by step in Strategic Planning' series. This comprises a series of practical member guides to help you to hold a strategic planning workshop that will give you the results you want.

We hope that we will inspire you to continue on your journey to being the kind of leader that others want to follow.

The Change Designs team

New articles:


Values made simple.

Article 5 in the authentic leadership series by Ken Ideus.

In the fifth of the authentic leadership series by Ken Ideus, Ken explains how values help us to make choices and decisions in both our working and personal lives.

In this fresh approach to looking at values, Ken also explains how we tend to have a personal list of values. A certain value may move up and down on our list depending on what is happening right now in our lives. He explains how our values change, as we mature through our careers

Values made simple.

What makes strategy fail.

The great pretenders of strategy.

Many strategic planning retreats are nothing more than a great pretense.

This article shows how delegates, CEO's, facilitators and organizers of strategic conferences often collude in pretending that just because they were there, and speakers spoke, that strategic planning had been done. If you want to use your strategic planning workshop to develop a strategy you can use to lead others, read this article. Then take action to ensure you design a strategy retreat which achieves real results.

What makes strategy fail.

Portfolio, program & project management.

The difference between the different levels of project management. By Anton van den Berg.

As organizations establish project management offices, many people are confused about the difference between portfolio, program and project management.

In this easy to read article, Anton van den Berg explains the differences between these three areas, as well as the different roles played by portfolio, program and project managers.

Portfolio, program & project management.

New member tools.


Step-by-step strategic planning.

A series of guides to help you prepare for a strategic planning workshop.

Developing a strategic plan that takes into account the issues, challenges, politics and culture of your organization, is a complex process. We continue our series of what is required to develop a common organizational vision and detailed strategy, into a step by step process.

The next four steps in preparing to run an effective strategic planning workshop are now available in our member zone. They are:

  1. Plan the content and activities for your workshop: The two biggest challenges in strategy are how to get people to think strategically rather than operationally and how to get people to move beyond the blind spots they have, that prevent them from considering new opportunities that may be important to their future. If you want to develop a powerful strategic plan that will position your organization to be successful in a future which may be different from today, then you will need to carefully design the content and activities of your strategy workshop to deal with these challenges.
  2. Plan the process or group dynamics. The way in which people work together during a strategy workshop, can affect the workshop results. Group dynamics can affect people's participation, level of buy-in, their willingness to share important knowledge and experience, their ability to be creative and the quality of their thinking. To get the result you want, you need to manage the group dynamics of your workshop effectively. This guide shows you how.
  3. Plan the time you need. The amount of time you need to achieve your strategic planning workshop objectives will depend on the content you choose, the group dynamics you've planned for, and the size of your group. This guide shows you how to calculate the time you need to achieve your strategy objectives.
  4. Collect strategic information. The quality of any strategic plan depends on the quality of information on which the plan is built. This guide shows you the type of research you can do before your strategy workshop, to improve the quality of your strategic plan.

As we develop the next steps in the strategic planning process, you can view them in the member tools, guides and articles section.

Member tools, guides & articles.

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