Wheel of Change
‘The Wheel of Change’ is a model shared by Marshall Goldsmith in his book ‘Triggers’. It is simple model that can help people to process the variety of options that are presented when wanting to become a better version of ourselves. It illustrates “the interchange of two dimensions we need to sort out before we become the person we want to be : the Positive to Negative axis tracks the elements that either help us or hold us back. The ‘Change to Keep’ axis tracks the elements that we determine to change or keep in the future. Thus, in pursuing any behavioural change we have four options : change or keep the positive elements, change or keep the negative.”
- Creating represents the positive elements that we want to create in our future – things to add or invent
- Preserving represents the positive elements that we want to keep in our future – things to maintain or improve
- Eliminating represents the negative elements that we want to eliminate in our future – things to reduce or eradicate
- Accepting represents the negative elements that we need to accept in our future – things we try to delay or make peace with
Why it’s useful
Meaningful behaviour change can be hard to do:
- it can be hard to admit we need to change
- it is easier to keep going with what is familiar
- we often don’t know how to execute a change
This model helps people to process the options available.
How/when to apply it
Here are some ideas
- Get the model out each time you on the receiving end of feedback – after a one-on-one with a team member, or a more formal mechanism like a 360.
- Look at it before your quarterly catch up with your manager.
- Pull out the model next time you feel your confidence is shaken. Remember what is working as well as what can be improved.
- Use the model after completing the DiA consultation process to help you prepare your Action Plan.
- Get the model out 6-12 months after you have finished the DiA program – and see where you need to focus your leadership energy over the next 6 months.
- Use the model when preparing your next 90-180 day plan.
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