The Change Process

In 2015 I published a book titled, “The Macro Change Handbook.” It was a retrospective look at the change process, mostly filtered through experiences that we had in advocating for cultural changes for folks with disabilities. In it, I looked closely at the change process.

Change is often thought of as going from one point to another. Clearly, it can be physical as well as mental. We can change our scene by traveling from one place to another, or change our mental model from one paradigm to another. We can change our framework or disposition from one perspective to another without moving from the spot we are in. We can change our attitude about something even if the event remains the same.

Change can be both planned or unplanned. With unplanned change, the circumstances surrounding the change are outside our control. Things happen to such an extent that the change agent has little or no influence. These unplanned situations are difficult because often the person was not planning for something new, yet is forced into a new direction.

Planned change is more the focus of the advocate and the change agent has a degree of control or at least has influence over the decision. Planned change presents an opportunity for the change agent to be consider and adopt some actions that might guide or influence the change into a chosen direction.

We can also present a futuristic look at something, but the change suggested might not be possible due to the limits on technology or applications. Jules Vern suggested many changed images in his writings in the 1800’s yet we did not have the scientific details to manifest his visions. Indeed, the computer was imagined in 1837 by Ada Byron, and was written about in her diary in a haunting way very applicable to how we know computers today. Yet, it was not until 1942 when the first computer, the size of a large room, was actually built.

Change is inevitable, yet, as creatures of habit, we often resist change. So where do you stand on the topic of change?