Playing with Change

Play isn’t just for kids 🙂

Change often grinds to a halt when people feel pressured to “get it right” or “be perfect.” Change takes place through a process of experimentation and discovery. When it’s “right” and “perfect” it probably isn’t change.

That’s where play comes in. Play is the process of learning and discovering by trying new ways of doing things without the pressure of perfection. Encouraging people to play with ideas and see what might work is an integral part of coaching-based leadership.

Consider a change that’s not moving forward in your world. Perhaps you need to build a more collaborative relationship with a person or team. Or you’d like to find a way to coax someone who always plays it safe to peek “outside of the box” and try something new. Consider inviting people to play with some new possibilities.

Playing with ideas work well when:

  • There are many ways to do something, such as finding ways to collaborate
  • The person has the basic skills to accomplish the task; the growth edge is learning how to apply the skills in new ways, such as in a different environment
  • You want to build a person’s confidence and / or get the person to “think outside the box”
  • If you’re the person’s manager, you’re open to letting the person choose what will work, and learn from the experience

Playing with ideas and approaches invites people to innovate, learn and become more confident in their ability to respond effectively to new situations. These are fundamental skills in our world of continuous change.

Perhaps you’d like to play with this idea?

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