Attitude Charting

Takes up one or more of the populations from the original pie chart map of constituent groups and develops a graphic representation of the attitudes toward the change initiative within the various sub-populations, using a bell-curve type chart.

Each population of constituents from the pie chart is described as some mix of four groups:

– Innovators
– Early Adopters
– Late Adopters
– Resistors

Emphasis is placed on determining how normal the populations is. For example, is there a normal population mix of 15% Innovators, 35% Early Adopters, 35% Late Adopters, and 15% Resistors? Or is the population skewed in some fashion (Example: a larger block of Resistors and lasted Adopters due to failures in the past)?

With this tool, the team becomes more focused in its analysis and more pointed in its discussion of the nature of the support and resistance to the change initiative. The emphasis shifts to
an analysis of the range of support or resistance within each group of key constituents.

How To Steps:
1. Select one of the groups impacted by the change initiative from the pie chart analysis
(See The Article “Key Constituency Map” by Steven Bonacorsi. Lean Six SIgma Master Black Belt)

2. Have each member of the team draw a Population Chart indicating how he/she perceives the group members’ attitude toward the change effort. If necessary, clarify what each piece of the piece of the population means (example: Innovators = Those who will readily endorse this change initiative and work on behalf of the team; Early Adopters = while not first in line, this population will quickly follow the lead of others and actively support the change initiative; Late Adopters = while not necessarily hostile or overtly resistant, this population will lag behind in terms of actively supporting the change initiative; resistors = will actively and openly resist the change initiative.

3. Share individual charts and work to reach consensus on how the population actually looks. If significant differences of opinions exist within the team, it may be useful to seek another perspective, perhaps even from some members of the population under construction.

4. At a minimum, the team should check their perceptions and assumptions about the population with others outside the team before accepting this chart as the correct view of the population.

5. OPTION: Use this population charting process to uncover the attitudes of specific individuals within a population. If the team chooses to use the tool in this fashion, the discussion should include a debate about where each individual status is for the change effort to be successful (example: a late adopter may only need to be helped to not become a resistor).

10 Tips For Effective Negotiations in Life and Business

In every field you are involved in negotiations on a regular basis, whether you realize it or not. When people think of negotiations generally the term “high level” comes to mind. There is a group of cigar smoking men surrounding a table in a board room and the volume is loud and occasionally emphasized with a fist pounding on the table.

That scene may have played in the ’70’s or earlier, but it really is an archaic vision into a past era, and it has almost nothing to do with this article. Everything you do comes as the result of a negotiation with someone, unless you are living alone on a desert island, and even then you are probably negotiating with Wilson.

Think about it. What did you have for dinner last night? Did you cook it? Did you choose the food? Where did you buy the food? All of these are the results of some low level negotiations. Did you speak with your spouse about the choice? If you looked in the paper for sales on food, that is a form of negotiation with the vendor.

But now the point is made, and perhaps you are looking at negotiating and thinking, gee, I never thought about it that way. So how do you negotiate face to face (or through other communication methods?) You have to start either with a need or with a solution, depending which side you are on. Either way these 10 points are things you need to have in mind to have a win-win.

1. Your negotiation has to have a two way commitment to the agreed upon ending

2. Know the real goal when you sit down to the table. Your goal is not to every step of the process necessarily, but to achieve the end result. Don’t let the steps drag down the negotiations

3. Remember the process is going to involve give and take. Don’t expect to dictate the terms, unless you are willing to walk, if they are not met. (See point 4)

4. Be prepared to walk if the negotiations aren’t going to fulfill your needs within your budget.

5. When you sit down at the table, know what your limits are on all aspects of the deal. What are your time, money, and product parameters? What is open to negotiation, and where is your wiggle room?

6. Have options in mind when you sit down. Perhaps you don’t need the widget gold plated; maybe silver will work just as well. Keep an open mind.

7. Know that to have successful negotiations it is not generally a once and done deal. Don’t bargain so hard that you won’t be able to return for another deal.

8. When you are done, you should have a written contract with solid goals and a timeline. There should also be consequences if the timeline is not kept, and possibly incentive if it is done right and done early.

9. Create a winning team. When you enter into a deal with someone, you are forming a team, at least in the short term. Make sure you can work with someone, if need be. Sometimes negotiations will make odd bedfellows, but make sure everyone is willing to pull their weight for the good of the team.

10. Remember the “Big Picture.” You are there for a specific purpose. Don’t get sidetracked and bogged down by the bug dust.

It takes commitment on the part of everyone involved to have a successful negotiation, and all negotiations are the beginning of a relationship. How that relationship starts out often dictates how it goes over time. Camaraderie goes a long way to keep things smooth along your journey, so keep your sense of humor and know that life will throw curve balls at you occasionally. Negotiations are the start of a relationship and relationships make business work.

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