A group of people has been attempting to accomplish some task as effectively and efficiently as possible. To do this, they naturally have developed various individual habits, social conventions, and have adopted certain technologies. Now, change in one or more of these aspects of their work is needed. This can be due to a change in the nature of the problem, the nature of the context in which they are working, learning, or the invention of new technological support. A plan is being developed to manage change.
How can people re-organize their work to reflect the new situation while at the same time retaining progress that has been made, keeping what still works and avoiding the case where people resist change? People can take time out to reflect on what is working and not working and use their creativity to invent new solutions by changing practices, methods, processes, ideas and techniques. How can we help guarantee that effective new learning is preserved?
· People have a drive to learn and practice new skills.
· People have a drive to acquire new experiences.
· People have a drive to defend against change that is too sudden, radical, or where the consequences are perceived to be too negative or too uncertain.
· It is easier and more productive to follow a useful procedure than to solve a problem anew each time it comes up.
Allow an opportunity for people to discuss and learn how to solve novel problems in an open fashion. Once a solution has been created and verified, however, it is more effective to embed that solution in infrastructure. Such an embedding could be in a paper form, in physical architecture, or in the workflow managed by a computer system.
Integration by “formula” is easier than integration by definition. Similarly, it is less work overall to solve the quadratic equation for the general case and “plug the numbers in” than to solve each quadratic equation as a special case.
Work procedures than once were invented now are instantiated as part of an on-line form that walks people through the process and collects the appropriate data.
A college with a wide lawn decides to wait on putting sidewalks in until it observes where people naturally wear paths in the grass.
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