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White Paper: IHI Psychology of Change Framework to Advance and Sustain Improvement

Why we love it:

Kate Hilton and Alex Anderson really highlighted why change doesn’t happen: which they attribute to the ability of organizations to “unleash the power of people and their motivations to advance and sustain improvement”. This is the psychology of change. They highlight the difference in technical change versus adaptive change, and the importance of human interactions and interpersonal relationships as foundational to all adaptive change. Adaptive change requires new mindsets, beliefs, skills and behaviours, and working to support people in their thinking will help manage what is traditionally called “resistance”. The approach highlights that a higher sense of “agency” is needed at three levels: Self, interpersonal and within the system.  We love how this thinking supports a coaching approach to change where change is not “managed” but rather the capacity for growth is tapped in others to help them in creating a new path. We believe that the Cognitive CoachingSM training is one of the few programs out there that gives the skills to people to be able to help others with their thinking in a non-judgemental and content-free way that honours the capacity of others. 

Why we think you will love it:

This work cross-walks so many different theories of change and collates into a relatively quick read. It helps frame how change needs to be transformational not transactional. It does help reframe how we traditionally think of change and how it impacts others to truly be more people driven in what we do. IT helps to expand our thinking away from the “what” and the “how” towards the “who”. It marries many approaches together – human centred design, change management, leadership, and the model for improvement as a way to help create the right culture and environment to support change in practice. 


“The IHI Psychology of Change Framework emphasizes authentic relationships as the foundation for co-production. Authentic relationships are fostered as people inquire, listen, see, and commit to each other in mutually supportive ways; such relationships require presence, mindfulness, genuine curiosity, humility, the courage to show vulnerability, and the ability to listen…These interactions are transformational, not reactive or transactional.”

HBR Idea Cast: How One CEO Creates Joy at Work

Take a listen:

Richard Sheridan has been on a journey to really understand what brings joy at work. He highlights what really makes us happy is to see the impact of our work – the way in which what we do impacts the people we serve. Creativity, imagination, innovation makes us the most human – and gets us to bring the best to work. Fear takes that “humanity” away. We need to make sure that we create an environment can flourish – which means a different leadership approach that is a high relational approach. 

Work Life by Adam Grant - The Problem with All-Stars

Take a listen:

In this podcast, Adam explores the importance of humility and valuing all members of a team, not just those who are the most “obvious”. He uses a basketball team analogy to highlight how less “talented” teams often beat those with super stars as they learn how to maximize all members of their team and the talents they have. 

Work Life by Adam Grant - The Office Without A**holes

Take a listen:

Working with a jerk will actually reduce your effectiveness of your work, reduce your creativity, impacts a negative attitude and kindness to others and can even lower your IQ. It has to do with the fact that it impacts your thinking and gets your amygdala firing - shutting down the thinking part of your brain. Dealing with people who might be acting a bit jerk-y is to explore their thinking with curiosity.

Take a listen:

In a live appearance at UCLA’s Royce Hall, New York Times best-selling author, happiness expert and Harvard-trained researcher Shawn Achor says that pleasure isn't the only thing that brings people happiness. How do you explain the joy felt during spiritually and emotionally challenging moments, such as when your legs are burning halfway through a marathon or when you cradle your 1-year-old in the middle of the night until she falls back to sleep? He offers a definition of happiness that encompasses all things that bring us deep, lasting joy. Shawn also explains how by making a single positive behavioral change, you can spark a powerful chain of happiness in your own life.