Lead Behavior Change or Don’t Be the Leader | #Leadership #LeadMorale

Leaders, do you believe that you can lead behavior change? Or do you think you shouldn’t or can’t. Over the thirty years I have consulted to leaders on leading change, some surprised me more than once with the statement, “Well you know Kate, you can’t change people.” It was interesting that they said “change people.” In using those words, these leaders created a false image of what we were discussing. In their minds, it justified avoiding the challenges of leading behavior change.

Unfortunately, they were fooling themselves. As goals and needs of the organization change, team members must grow and change their behaviors to meet those new goals. Great leaders lead behavior change and show team members how it benefits them and their careers! So what beliefs do they hold and how do they lead behavior change?



Lead Behavior Change: Image is grape leaves with one a different color

Lead Behavior Change or Don’t Be the Leader. Image by Martin LaBar via Flickr Creative Commons License.

Image by Martin LaBar via Flickr Creative Commons License.


Lead Behavior Change or Don’t Be the Leader


Beliefs for Leading Behavior Change

  • If you are leading change in an organization, you must lead behavior change. Else you and the teams will not reach success.

  • Leading behavior change doesn’t make you a puppeteer. Great leaders highlight how they and the teams must change their behaviors/actions to reach success.

  • Team members who aren’t willing to change their behavior/actions may not be committed to team success.

  • Leaders must change their behaviors and actions to inspire and be the model for those they lead.

  • People can change their behaviors. Saying that you can’t change behaviors insults them and makes you seem like a non-leader.



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Steps to Leading Teams to Grow & Change


Great leaders lead behavior change by …

  1. Having everyone discuss what behaviors must change. This first step tells the team members you see them as adults who can figure out what they must do to reach success.

  2. Redefine teamwork if necessary. If the teams always assumed that a team is a group of people with common goals, it’s time for the teams to write a new and more dynamic definition of teamwork.

  3. Help the team members identify obstacles to behavior change. For example, how does the team culture, or processes, or rules, block the new behavios needed?

  4. Ask the teams what type of coaching or training they need for these new behaviors/actions? This could be individual skill building or team building exercises.

  5. Discuss how these behavior changes help them in their professional and personal development? In other words, what’s in it for them?


What Will You Do When Some Aren’t Changing?

Of course, leaders and team members must be accountable for their behavior change. Yet ironically, individual accountability isn’t just for the individual. How will the leaders and team members address lack of behavior change? If you do not discuss this and agree to a tangible approach, the whole effort can tumble down and leave a scar that prevents future change.



What Challenges and/or Success Have You Had in Leading Behavior Change?


From my professional experience to your success,
Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

Related Post:
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10 Ways to Ignite Greatness Without Leaving Scars

©2021 Kate Nasser, CAS, Inc. Somerville, NJ. I appreciate your sharing the link to this post on your social streams. However, if you want to re-post or republish the content of this post, please email info@katenasser.com for permission and guidelines. Thank you for respecting intellectual capital.


Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™, delivers coaching, consulting, training, and keynotes on leading change, employee engagement, teamwork, and delivering the ultimate customer service. She turns interaction obstacles into interpersonal success. See this site for workshop outlines, keynote footage, and customer results.

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