In the ideal picture of the agile organisation, people move like a flock of starlings: in a flowing wave motion. But people are not starlings. When we move together, we touch, seek and collide with each other. That friction has an important function in change: it ensures that we can take steps together. But we can also cause friction that scratches. In that case, it creates unrest, negativity and confusion, which prevent us from moving forward. If we want change to succeed, it is essential that we find the friction that brings shine, without making scratches. This is the subject of my new book ‘De functie van frictie’ (‘The function of friction’).
As a change management consultant, I help change agents in complex change processes to find the essential conversation in order to move forward together. Change agents may be directors, managers, consultants, employees or anyone else who wants to achieve something in an organisation. I like to help them to give space, direction and guidance to changes that really make a difference.
I am quite taken by the subject of change management. You could even call me a little obsessed. That explains why I have made it my second nature to discover obstructive patterns in all (yes, all) conversations I am a part of, and to unravel what is needed to reverse the pattern.
Writing is my training ground. Because when an insight remains stuck in bullets or a picture, without me being able to turn it into a text, I know that I have not yet reached the core. This reflection process has led to a practical, lived and coherent body of thought on leadership in change. In the past twenty years, I have published seven books and more than 75 blogs. The book ‘Hoe krijg je ze mee?’ (‘How to gain commitment’) has sold more than 20,000 copies. It is used in many college education and management training programmes. I have also developed a podcast series called De kunst van het vinden (The art of finding).
Speaker and trainer
Besides being an advisor and author, I am also a speaker and trainer. Online and offline. For large and small groups. Always fuelled by enthusiasm, aimed at interaction, laced with humour and recognisable examples. That is when I do what I love best: making people think about their leadership in change, so that they know what to do in their complex situation.
Oh yes; I am averse to bombastic jargon and intoxicating change romanticism, and am at my best in organisations where reflection and laughter are allowed.