Lead the change 4


Dan Gregory & Kieran Flanagan are the Co-Founders, CEO & Chief Creative Officer at the Impossible Institute™, a strategic think-tank that helps leaders, individuals and organisations "Make positive change & make change positive™". 

For over twenty years, they have worked in the fields of Creativity, Communications and Behavioral Strategy applying their considerable experience to social change programs for the United Nations in Singapore and White Ribbon in Australia, to category re-inventions for the likes of Coca-Cola, Unilever and News Corp. in Australasia, Asia & Europe and to leadership development programs for organisations in categories as diverse as Banking & Finance, Education, Health Care & Pharmaceuticals and in Real Estate & Retail in Australia, Asia and the USA.

Having been named in the "Top 25 Speakers to watch" by Meetings & Conventions USA, and as the authors of behavioural treatise, Selfish Scared & Stupid™, they are highly in demand as speakers, trainers and mentors to leadership teams around the world.

For more on Kieran, visit Kieran Flanagan Speaker

For more on Dan, visit Dan Gregory Speaker

An age of change demands a different kind of leader.

We're living in an age of unprecedented change defined by a Digital Revolution, Information Overload, Business “Model-fication”, Rising Disengagement, Expectation Inflation and Change Fatigue.

All the while, futurists and economists are making predictions that alternate between the surreal but exciting to the catastrophically frightening with neither offering much in the way of what we can actually do about it. Change is a given... now what?

We believe the broader change landscape requires a new kind of leadership - one that is more creative, more connected and more courageous - and that our capacity to lead change determines both our emotional response to it and our engagement with and around it.

The reality is, we tend to only fear the change that is thrust upon us, while enthusiastically welcoming the change we actively seek. The fear of change, therefore, is more about the absence of control, and indeed, leadership.

Are you #ChangePositive™?


What if our default response to change was positive?

You’ve probably attended a “Prepare for Change" conference, participated in some “Change Management Training”, read a “Future of Change” report specific to your industry and chanted a “Change is a good thing” mantra as part of a team building exercise. But if you're honest with yourself, has your culture, team and behaviour really changed? Or have we all just become even more change resistant than we were before?

One of the issues we encounter is that our traditional approach to change has been incredibly limited. Change Management has essentially tried to limit the effects of change, to curtail its disruptiveness and essentially shelter the status quo for as long as possible.

It's the reason some of our best employees can often be the worst innovators and why large organisations find the whole process of innovation increasingly difficult. The status quo fundamentally works for them, they thrive in it - plus, it pays their rent, takes care of their children's school fees and puts food on the table. Hardly an incentive to drive change.

On the whole, we are far too focused on “What’s Changing” and spending too little time, money and energy on “What needs changing” and just as importantly, “What’s not changing”. Much of this strategic bias is explained by Dr Stephen Covey's work on "What is IMPORTANT versus what is URGENT". And yet, here we are in a new century still needing to learn these often shared and well understood lessons.

The default strategy till now has essentially been, "Just hold on till we get to the other side!" But what if there is no other side? What if this is the new normal? 

Unfortunately, resilience is a finite capacity and as change increases in terms of speed and scope, we're going to need to move from steadfast resilience to engaged agility.

Leading change requires changing our skills

In 25 years of working with virtually every industry sector and business category, we've identified that the skills that define change tend to fall into three distinct but related capability sets:

Thinking - the ability to innovate, unlock your genius, adapt to change and lead your category.

Communication - a capacity to inspire others, engage customers and increase your influence.  

Leadership - a willingness to implement, to drive accountability and lead positive change. 

This is the case regardless of whether you work in the C-Suite at the big end of town or if you're a bootstrapping Entrepreneur looking to punch above your weight. 

These skills are critical to not only navigating change, but also for generating insights about what is unchanging (what we call the Forever Skills™).

The application of these capabilities is critical across the leadership spectrum - from self-leadership to thought leadership to team and market leadership.

Do more than manage change… lead it!

Our goal is to help Leaders, teams and organisations move up the Change Ladder from being a "sufferer" to those that lead it and profit from it. To help leaders change perceptions, thinking, relationships, behaviours, opinions, and outcomes.


© 2017 The Impossible Institute