Skip to main content

Change leadership: Have you ever launched a Hate campaign?

Vernon Hill, Commerce Bank's founder and former CEO, pioneered a NEW style of retail banking that relies on service rather than interest rates to attract customers and deposits. Talking to new managers, Vernon said "We're asking you to FORGET the way you delivered your skills at other banks."
When introducing something new, how do we make our stakeholder groups forget the old? Typically, we use a "love-the-new" campaign that talks about the NEW's nice things. Many years ago, when my COE moved from a traditional user-centric practice to a business process centric practice, I did not stop with a LOVE campaign. I also used a HATE campaign -- a "hate-the-old" campaign. The campaign comprised many items, but here's one example . . .
I got some of the practitioners to do a literature study on traditional approaches. The researchers could see for themselves how inadequate existing approaches were in meeting enterprise needs. They also presented the findings to the entire team and to other stakeholder groups.
At Columbia Business School's Leading Strategic Growth & Change program, professor Rita McGrath presented an analysis of delay and resistance. I took this program in 2008 -- after I had led a Change initiative at my former employer. I could therefore relate to the internal and external barriers the professor talked about. Leading Change is unlike leading status quo. But it has to be done where there is conviction. And in some situations, we need to look for new ways to push our Change efforts -- including a Hate campaign!

Have you introduced something new in your organization? How did you deal with the challenge of resistance to Change?


  1. Hi Henry,

    Really appreciate your article. Many a times, we are asked to change, adapt and accept the process change...sometimes without any reasoning.

    When the employees resist, the leaders call it an organizational challenge and say employees are not adaptable to change.

    There are very few leaders who launch the "HATE" campaign..your article clearly highlights the importance of it and I could relate to it too..

    Once again, you are right!



Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Explorer mentality Vs conqueror mentality

A fixation on competitors and on beating them is evidence of what Amazon's Jeff Bezos calls a conqueror mentality. In contrast, people waking up in the morning thinking how to innovate for the customer -- and having intense fun innovating -- is evidence of an explorer mentality.

The explorer mentality resulted in Amazon allowing negative reviews of its products. Reacting to this, a book publisher objected, saying "You make money when you sell things." But Bezos thought, "We don't make money when we sell things; we make money when we help customers make purchase decisions." So explorer mentality also demands a willingness to be misunderstood for long periods of time.

During his 16 years as CEO, Bezos' Amazon has delivered shareholder returns of 12,266% (industry-adjusted), and the company's value has grown by $111 billion. More in HBR Jan-Feb 2013.

"If you worry about your reputation you don't deserve to have one."

Nassim Nicholas Taleb 1/2:
If you worry about your reputation you don't deserve to have one. Let me add just a bit to Taleb's great quote ...

True reputation is earned based on your positive CONTRIBUTIONS to entities other than yourself and your family: employers, customers, industry, society, Church, country, world, whatever.

Ask yourself: What have I discovered, invented, shared, set up, or built that will be of significant value to another entity for some time?

Contributions are not about our title (director, VP, etc). It's nice to have a big title (I would like to have one, too). At best, titles make us and our family happy. But chasing after titles could be a sign of narcissism. Titles are rarely a trustworthy certificate of contribution. This is true today when titles are increasingly achieved through bootlicking, back-stabbing, even hijacking another's job.

Contributions have longer life. They cannot be erased overnight. Five hundred years after German professor…

Before you watch another news report, watch this whistleblower

If the leftist media was biased back in 2001, it is an outright mafia today Bernard Goldberg, a 28-year-veteran at leftist media outlet CBS, has exposed the "pettiness, hypocrisy, and bias inside CBS ... Just turn on your TV set and it’s there … but it’s there too often in too many stories."

Shockingly, you see not only political bias, but social bias as well.

In both political and social topics, the leftist media puts out content that dupes both loyalists and new-comers. Why are they so biased: self-serving purposes such as ratings and manipulation for votes.

Goldberg exposes the leftist media.
Manipulation Leftist media constantly attempts to manipulate people's mind with the following tricks.

1. They lie. Or misinform.

2. They hide certain things, as though these things did not exist or did not matter.

3. They won’t let the other voices be heard. More recently, author Sharyl Attkisson was not allowed to freely air segments that exposed Obama scandals such as Operation…