More Fearless Change: Strategies for Making Your Ideas Happen

Mary Lynn Manns, Linda Rising

Language: English

Pages: 336

ISBN: 0133966445

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

63 New and Updated Patterns for Driving and Sustaining Change


“The hard part of change is enlisting the support of other people. Whether a top manager interested in improving your organization’s results or a lone developer promoting a better way of working, this book will give you tools and ideas to help accomplish your goal.”

–George Dinwiddie, independent coach and consultant, iDIA Computing, LLC


“Keep the patterns in this book and Fearless Change handy. … These patterns transformed me from an ineffective ‘voice in the wilderness’ to a valued collaborator.”

–Lisa Crispin, co-author (with Janet Gregory) of Agile Testing and More Agile Testing


In their classic work, Fearless Change, Mary Lynn Manns and Linda Rising interviewed successful leaders of change, identified 48 patterns for implementing change in teams of all sizes, and demonstrated how to use these techniques effectively. Now, in More Fearless Change the authors reflect on all they’ve learned about their original patterns in the past decade, and introduce 15 powerful, new techniques–all extensively validated by change leaders worldwide. Manns and Rising teach strategies that appeal to each individual’s logic (head), feelings (heart), and desire to contribute (hands)–the best way to motivate real change and sustain it for the long haul.


Learn how to

  • Focus on the best things you can achieve with limited resources
  • Strategize to build flexible plans and go after low-hanging fruit
  • Get help from the right people in the right ways
  • Establish emotional connections that inspire motivation and imagination
  • Create an “elevator pitch” that keeps everyone focused on what truly matters
  • Build bridges, work with skeptics, soften resistance, and open minds
  • Uncover easier paths towards change, and build on what already works
  • Sustain momentum, provide time for reflection, and celebrate small successes


More Fearless Change reflects a profound understanding of how real change happens: not instantaneously in response to top-down plans and demands, but iteratively, through small steps that teach from experience. Best of all, as thousands of change agents have already discovered, its patterns are easy to use–and they work.

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You may have prepared your elevator pitch and created some persistent PR. These are good strategies at the beginning and throughout the change initiative. After all, your audience must know about an idea before they can be influenced to accept it. But facts are not always persuasive. You may believe that your listeners will be persuaded to support your idea based on a well-organized collection of data. Yet, individuals interpret information to support their own deep-rooted belief systems and, if a fact doesn’t fit that system, they often challenge, dismiss, or ignore it.

Keep in mind that this pattern won’t work for everyone, especially those who are not comfortable with visualizing the future in this way. This is only one persuasion strategy that should be combined with concrete data. = = = = = = = = = = Using the Imagine That pattern enables you to examine how a new idea might work in the future. It prompts listeners to leave behind old ways of thinking and imagine how new possibilities might be relevant to their daily existence. By focusing on the future, individuals may be more motivated to let go of the past.

This evidence can be provided by the successes others are having. When people who have not yet adopted a new idea smell success, they are likely to become interested enough to ask you about it. Therefore: When people comment on the success they see with the innovation, treat their inquiry as a teaching moment. Use the Just Enough pattern to spark some interest and the Personal Touch pattern to match the innovation to the inquirer’s needs. If you think it is appropriate, ask for help—identify a small task and ask the inquirer to complete it.

When your boss supports the tasks you are doing to introduce the new idea, you can be even more effective. You are an evangelist trying to introduce a new idea into your organization. You need attention and resources for the new idea. Management support legitimizes things in the workplace. It’s hard to get some people involved in a new idea unless they think management is behind it. Sponsorship is important. There must be a manager who believes that the change needs to happen, who understands the decisions that need to be made, and who has the power to allocate the resources that will be needed during the transition.

Stories can be remembered and repeated much better than a random collection of facts. Be sure that opinion leaders, such as connectors and bridge builders, know the stories around the new idea so that they can share them when given the opportunity. This pattern is about hearing from a friend or trusted colleague. A story can be even more effective when it comes from someone we know more than from an unfamiliar expert. This is especially true for members of the early majority, which makes up about one-third of a normally distributed population.

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