Disruptive innovation – change that matters. Employees are concerned about an evolving workplace (HBR) — leaders should be equipped to address the anxieties and adapt to capture growth opportunities to push the workplace forward.

Professional coaching provides a long-term solution to lessening the increasing pressures and growing uncertainty of a ‘Covid world’ where unforeseen disruption arrived at breathtaking speed. It was a true force for change when everything had to be reconsidered… from the workplace location to how teams worked together. For schools, teachers transitioned to online classes overnight. As a result, school leaders were expected to make decisions about teaching and learning in their school (often involving a financial cost) that they had not encountered before and within urgent time frames. In addition they had to re-examine strategic direction and vision, whilst managing ambiguity, and this all highlighted the need for professional coaching more than ever. Change is here for all organisations, and how they benefit from the emerging disruption and achieve innovation starts with people. Change matters.

Organisational change theories have highlighted the need for change and how to do it. The term ‘disruptive innovation’ coined by management consultants in 1995, saw the wave of nimble startups challenge incumbents who brought forward the case for change (CB Insights). Industries that have been most vulnerable to disruption are those with outdated business practices and slow technology adoption, however it has still taken a pandemic to move many organisations forward. Organisational change strategies, commonly packaged up and sold by consulting firms, are rarely executed within organisations (CB Insights).

Having a strategy thought out, with a change management plan is a good start however without the culture or capabilities you’re left with consultancy buzzwords and a lot of talk without much ‘doing’.  People are key to your change management capabilities and therefore having a coach is key to not only managing change but implementing it within an organisation beyond a strategy and plan. It’s about benefiting from the coaching with ‘the doing’ while also shifting the mindsets of people.

Heads of schools know that approximately 75% (sometimes more) of their budgeted expenses are allocated to Human Resource costs. Schools are unique in that, in comparison to most business organisations, they’re employing disproportionately larger numbers of people to deliver education to students. Leaders who’ve received coaching or who have a coach have a greater ability to lead. They’ve had the coaching mindset instilled within them and are better equipped to adapt, manage and support other employees (HBR). Coaching is about enabling creativity, which research shows thrives during pandemics — disruptive innovation. Coaching is defined by ICF as “a thought-provoking and creative process”.

changeIn the Covid environment, schools transitioning between the face-to-face class environment and online has meant diverging from command and control and enabling creativity through an environment of provocation and capacity building (Frontiers). Professional coaching is an enabler of change. It’s structured around conversations between the coach and their counterpart, and the counterpart emerging with potential options to consider for problem solving or taking the next steps. It’s focused on empowerment of the counterpart. With the coach using probing questions they unlock the potential from within and uncover factors/considerations that have not emerged already from individual thinking.

With Professional coaching “individuals, teams, and organizations can explore resistance, increase engagement, and promote resilience in the face of change” (HBR). This means that counterparts can self-assess and course correct in real time rather than relying on predetermined milestones or measurements and adapt fluidly to the context surrounding them. The anxiety around change is alleviated as coaching builds capacity and ensures people are not only equipped to deal with disruption but thrive in it as ‘disruptive innovators’.

Is your workplace equipped for change? http://deidrefischer.com.au/contact