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Why Creating a Sense of Urgency
is a Terrible Idea

by
Harrison Cates Withers III
Copyright © 2014 Media 1. All Rights Reserved.

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons
Attribution-NonCommercial...
I was recently told that a best practice of
change management was to
“create a sense of urgency”

www.media1.us
management experts
(including Drucker) have
been saying it instinctively
for years without actually
thinking about what it...
what
does it
really mean?

www.media1.us
and is it relevant in
today’s business climate
of openness and
transparency?

www.media1.us
Let’s break it down:
Create a Sense of Urgency

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Create
what is it you are trying to create
when it comes to change?
If you want people to help create a
solution, you shou...
Sense
sense alludes to a
feeling.

you may “sense” you are
getting a cold, or maybe

you just need a drink
of water.

www....
Urgency

the fact that something is
urgent does not mean
it’s important.
Source: First Things First, Stephen Covey

www.me...
human beings tend to be quite literal.

create a sense of urgency
is translated as:

a fictional account that will
make me...
what you really need is:

communicate an
expectation
and explain the
importance

www.media1.us
words matter
if your people understand it’s really important,
they’ll make it urgent.

(be transparent)

www.media1.us
Why Creating a Sense of Urgency
is a Terrible Idea
For companies understanding that user adoption is the key to
the succes...
www.media1.us
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Why Creating a Sense of Urgency is a Terrible Idea

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I recently wrote a blog with the same title http://www.media1.us/harrison-withers/creating-a-sense-of-urgency/, that I got a bit of positive feedback on. I decided I could shorten it and give it more impact as a SlideShare.

It's about a "best practice" in change management that seems like a good idea at first blush, but as you really think about what the words mean, it turns out it's not that helpful at all.

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Transcript of "Why Creating a Sense of Urgency is a Terrible Idea"

  1. 1. Why Creating a Sense of Urgency is a Terrible Idea by Harrison Cates Withers III
  2. 2. Copyright © 2014 Media 1. All Rights Reserved. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/ or send a letter to Creative Commons, 444 Castro Street, Suite 900, Mountain View, California, 94041, USA.
  3. 3. I was recently told that a best practice of change management was to “create a sense of urgency” www.media1.us
  4. 4. management experts (including Drucker) have been saying it instinctively for years without actually thinking about what it means. www.media1.us
  5. 5. what does it really mean? www.media1.us
  6. 6. and is it relevant in today’s business climate of openness and transparency? www.media1.us
  7. 7. Let’s break it down: Create a Sense of Urgency www.media1.us
  8. 8. Create what is it you are trying to create when it comes to change? If you want people to help create a solution, you should engage them before it’s urgent. www.media1.us
  9. 9. Sense sense alludes to a feeling. you may “sense” you are getting a cold, or maybe you just need a drink of water. www.media1.us
  10. 10. Urgency the fact that something is urgent does not mean it’s important. Source: First Things First, Stephen Covey www.media1.us
  11. 11. human beings tend to be quite literal. create a sense of urgency is translated as: a fictional account that will make me feel uneasy and that I need to take care of immediately, but that probably isn’t important. www.media1.us
  12. 12. what you really need is: communicate an expectation and explain the importance www.media1.us
  13. 13. words matter if your people understand it’s really important, they’ll make it urgent. (be transparent) www.media1.us
  14. 14. Why Creating a Sense of Urgency is a Terrible Idea For companies understanding that user adoption is the key to the success of their enterprise technology investments, Media1 is a transformational firm that goes beyond training and communication strategies delivered by consultants and trainers. Media1 delivers a unique process and technology that engages users, aligning them with strategy, enabling measurable progress against critical business goals, leveraging customer-specific Human Capital Analytics, and delivering more than a return on the technology investment. Media1 delivers a Return on People and empowers the customer to build a more engaged workforce. www.media1.us
  15. 15. www.media1.us
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