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Communicating Change: Connecting the ‘WHO?’ and ‘WHY?’

In last week’s blog post I spoke about how vital it is to understand the ‘WHO?’ when it comes to leading change.

Moving-on a step further this week, I would like to share how you might leverage off this understanding to create a compelling ‘WHY?’

One process I use to determine WHY a change initiative might be important for the individuals (rather than taking an “I know what you need approach” is a Human Centered Design Thinking approach. Through the initial process of Empathy Mapping,  people are able to share their current-state around a context eg: timetabling, organisational structure, teaching of reading etc. During this process the Pain-points (what’s not going so well) and Gains (what’s going well/an opportunity) are identified. For anyone leading any type of change, this information is absolute GOLD! Its a bit like having already identified what people like to eat before they come to dinner so you ensure they can partake.

 Human-Centered Design Thinking process
Human-Centered Design Thinking process
 Empathy Map
Empathy Map

Having identified the pain-points and areas that are working well, we are able to speak directly to these when engaging people with the WHY. As an example. If the change involves the introduction of a new technology such as the use of Google drive across an organisation, when we ask the question “How are current ways of sharing information digitally working for you?” we gain an understanding of where people are situated in relation to this, as well as their pain-points such as “losing files”, ‘crossing over files between home and work laptops”, etc. This information is gold in that we are then able to communicate how using Google drive will allow them to work from any place, anytime without having to transfer files. It will also save them time, and angst in looking for files when they go ‘missing’, as they are always there.

Furthermore, pulling-from the information you have acquired around the WHO you will also be able to link with their values and motivators. eg: This will increase your efficiency and give you more time for doing the things that matter.

So as you move into this coming week start to link your knowledge of the WHO with how you approach the WHY. 

Also listen-out for people’s pain-points as they speak – they are the key to unlocking their WHY.


Keep smiling 🙂





Middle Leader Coaching and Mentoring

Are you a leader of an organisation or school who is intent on growing your middle leaders, but not quite sure how?

Are you spending time mentoring and coaching them on-the-hop and feel you could be supporting them better?

Maybe with the best of intent, you place them on a one-day course, but these are like a drop in the ocean; they provide some tools, but once back in the face of work, their use can fall-over. This leaves them feeling frustrated and confused, and can sometimes make an even bigger problem for you to deal with, and will eat into your already precious time.

More details here


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