An interesting and worthy book came across my desk the other day on organizational change. The model, in short: great ideas from the frontline employees of an organization travel up through the organization and into the strategic planning of senior management. In approved form, the ideas then loop back down to the lower levels of the organization for implementation. The solutions then leave the loop and go out into the rest of the organization for enterprise-wide rollout.
This is The Q-Loop, The Art and Science of Lasting Corporate Change, by Brian Klapper, president and founding partner of the Klapper Institute.
I talk a lot about creative ideas, inspiration and velocity as the way to win, so I found a lot to like in Klapper’s blueprint for driving change that lasts from the ground-level up. Organizations have many moving parts, change is usually hard graft, and the Q Loop is no easy task, but this book works through the steps towards making it happen.
Part one (entering the loop) covers the challenge for organizations to be adaptive, the valuing /sourcing / generating / rewarding of ideas, and the use of the organization’s collective IQ through an ‘ideas quest’ which involves focus, engagement, sharing, planning and evaluation.
Part two (going around the loop) steps beyond ‘conference room solutions’ and, for change initiatives selected, starts with the need to focus on a mandate and form the right team of heroes. Next - to reframe the approach - is a mindset-shifting ‘what could be’ experience to overcome obstacles.
Part Three (exiting the loop) is about embedding the Q-Loop in the organization by igniting a wildfire, through sustained energy, communicating objectives compellingly, raising employees’ expectations, and making transformation an ongoing effort.
The book has lots of cases, examples, interesting facts, insightful quotes and self-evaluation quizzes. It’s easy to navigate, with chapter takeaways and previews.
Lasting change demands belief, inspiration and action. ‘Q-Loop’ is a solid contribution to leadership. As Klapper says, “Greatness comes to the bold.”