Monday, May 31, 2010

Change the environment to get co-operation.

I wrote about this a few weeks ago in one of my behavioural economics pieces.

We tend to believe that change is difficult because people resist change. And to change their behaviour, we need to change their minds.

Not always. Sometimes it is easier to simply change the environment.

For example, sales and marketing do not always get on. There is often a natural tension between these teams. This is not always a bad thing. However, it can sometimes get out of hand, and become destructive. The first response to fix this is to do workshops, talk through issues, align objectives, ask for respectful behaviours etc etc.

All good. An easier way might be to simply sit these two teams beside eachother. Yep, move a few desks.

Social Psychologist Leon Festinger and his colleagues found that a leading indicator of relationships in work is how near they are to eachother. You've probably seen this in action. Your best mates at work either work on your team, near your team or you used to work with them. Propinquity is what they call it.

1 comment:

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