Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Wrapping a SCARF Around Maslow Can Lead to Real Change

I've spent a lot of time lately looking into the science of change and reflecting on whether or not the traditional change models actually work.  Change is no trivial matter and one thing that is for certain is that it is VERY difficult to change people's behaviours. 

Take for example heart attack victims - even in this case where there is compelling and potentially lifesaving reasons why people should change their diets following a heart attack the shocking fact is that only 1 in 9 people are actuially able to effect such a change.  So perhaps it is no wonder that so many change programmes in organisations fail (just how many actually fail is open to debate - some new reserach woudl be helpful in this space).

The good news is that there is hope out there in the scientific community.  One of the best writers and thinkers in the field is David Rock who has produced several tremendous "how to" books focused on personal, organisational and leadership change.  In this short video David introduces his SCARF model.  I will leave it to David to explain the acronym but what is fascinating is that research is suggesting that the classic Maslow pyramid of needs may need tweaked in a pretty fundamental especially in the context of "hygiene factors".  David suggest that what Maslow refered to as "Esteem" matters such as status and fairness are in fact more important to people than food!

This is pretty fascinating work and it just might be game changing for Leaders and HR professionals.


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incorporate in california said...

Behviour is innate in a person's character. To change it is tantamount to changing the person. So yeah, it is a tall order so I guess the more effective approach is understanding a person's temperament, just what the Myers Briggs do, and work from there. But nevertheless, David Rock's insights here are for the books for sure!