Power and Influence Simulation – Blog #5

                The biggest takeaway I had from this simulation was that when leading a team, a different approach may need to be taken for various members. Each team member will react to challenges differently and an effective leader acknowledges that and adapts their leadership style accordingly. The simulation made it clear that since different people process change differently, the leader must be willing to change their leadership style when interacting with different people. A good leader should be able to recognize and accommodate those differences. In the future, I will use the knowledge to be more intentional with how I approach those that I am leading. I will try to tailor my style to best suit each of the members of my team. For example, I may spend more time privately discussing the issue with resistant members of the team while not targeting my efforts as much towards those that were quicker to adopt the change.

                A key lesson I learned about change management is the need to ramp up to larger changes that have a greater impact on the team. There were a few times during the simulation where I pulled a lever too early as I tried to make too big of a change too quickly. In one instance, I tried to announce goals and deadlines before everyone was in the trial phase and was met with a poor response. I tried to act before the majority of people were ready for that action. It is important to start with smaller steps, like private interviews with teammates, before launching into broader and high impact initiatives. People need to be on board and aware of what you want to do before you try and make them do something.

                While I knew power, influence, and urgency were players in team dynamics and making change, I never realized how broadly that is applicable. In government, it is almost always true that nothing ever gets done without urgency and someone powerful/influential backing it. Government, and legislation in particular, is usually a reactive process because of this. Without a pressing urgency to do something, politicians rarely feel the need to get ahead of potential problem. What this simulation showed me, is that principle applies to much smaller situations as well. The same ideas and principles are at work in companies big and small, and even is smaller teams like group projects in school. Even without knowing it, our perception of power between people can have a strong impact on decisions and opinions.

                I think the major difference with this simulation was that in previous simulations, we were tasked with making the final decision on issues while today we were tasked with convincing people that we were making the right decision. In both the Patient Zero and Judgement in Crisis, we got information from our followers and then decided, but we never had to back that decision up to our followers. This Power and Influence Simulation required us to complete the next step, which was convince people that the decision we were making was the best one, for everyone. The simulation was different because the implementation of our decision was not a guarantee and we had to earn it.

                Crisis Management and Urgency are different because urgency acts as a motivator for change while a crisis required immediate action. When dealing with crises, inaction was rarely a viable option. A mistake was made, and it was up to us to deal with the fallout. For example, in the Judgement in Crisis simulation, we had to face the repercussions of flawed product instructions. There was no way around this problem. This differs from urgency which is more about encouraging a change. That change can be anything, but the urgency is part of what pushes it to happen.

Leave a Reply