Framework 102 Adaptive Change Framework (a variation of Virginia Satir Change Process – see framework 59)



(source: Cindy Weeks et al, 2020)

The diagram above

"...describes the journey from existing status quo to a visionary or desired future. Driven by destabilising forces, the non-linear journey is composed of three distinct phases: the fall, the cauldron, and the road back. The dashed line indicates that period which is highly influenced by VUCA......The red line traces the social, emotional and psychological ups and downs experience by going through the three-phase..."

Cindy Weeks et al, 2020

The destabilising force aims to jolt us out of our complacency and away from the status quo, ie business as usual. On the other hand, stabilising forces encourage you to return to the status quo.

There are many potential exit ramps along the journey where people can escape. One of the first exit ramps (resist, deny, defend) is explained by the desire to return to the familiar status quo by the 'non-believers' in the change.

Going through the cauldron enables us to discover transformational ideas, ie you innovate, reinvent and respond positively to demands of destabilisation.

The gyrations in the red line refer to attitudes to change, ie when the red line is up, change is good; when the red line is down, change does not look inviting and the exit ramps looks attractive.

The link between VUCA and the adaptive change framework is shown in the below table

VUCA Experience
Reveals and Amplifies our
Is Resolved, Mitigated and Dampened by

"...the first column contains the destabilising events and the third column contains destabilising events. Destabilising and stabilising forces occur throughout the adaptive change cycle - an oscillation that maintains forward movement. The middle column is what initiates and drives the red line of change. Leaders need to manage to these middle column dynamics in order to achieve a successful journey to their desired future..."

Cindy Weeks et al, 2020

(for more on VUCA, see elsewhere in this knowledge base)


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