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Culture Really Does Matter

Change Management Lesson: The Butterfly Effect: A Story of Organisational Change: Episode 3 Personal Leadership Style Transformation

13 March 2022


In our animated fable about organisational change The Butterfly Effect   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NCIa0eQw3mc&t=1s we introduce a management team based on the characters of Beavers.

In this series of short blogs we shall analyse each episode in the fable and pinpoint the key change management lessons.

In episode 1 (Times are changing) posted 3rd January 2022 we reviewed the dramatic change in the fortunes of the Beaver team driven my powerful change drivers.

 In  episode 2 , we investigated how the Beaver leadership team initially reacted to the change crises and some key decisions they took to manage this challenge successfully.

In episode 3 we shall explore the change tactic the Beavers adopted of developing their change champion identities to support the overall change project.


Episode 3: Evolving as a change champion

 In our fable the Butterfly as a cultural change coach encourages the Beavers to embrace the empowering belief that they could emerge as very influential and successful change champions.



As role model change champions they could build up a change champion network throughout their organisation.  This network of change champions would energise the transformation programme and inspire the teams of Beavers delivering day to day operations to be the very best version of themselves and transform the competitive position of their organisation . This however required a cultural shift in their collective leadership styles.

 For too many years the Beavers had relied on the technical expertise of their managers to guide the daily tasks of building community infrastructures. They had blueprints regards how best to organise their work and achieve their goals. They had relied upon transactional leadership to influence their teams and were very tasked focused. However, the Butterfly as coach stressed to the Beavers that they needed to adopt a conscious leadership style if they were to engage with their followers and inspire them to  believe that they can  create the kind of culture that they want to belong to and which would bring all of them success. They embarked on a personal leadership transformation programme to emerge as authentic and skilled change champions  guided by their cultural change partner's the Fox and the Butterfly.




 The Fox though understood that having an optimistic mindset and great energy whilst incredibly important was not enough. The Beavers also had to commit to a journey of personal growth and change in themselves as leaders: “Cultural change has to start within yourselves as leaders” said the Fox insightfully. This is the essence of the Butterfly Effect as a metaphor for successful cultural change.


 Change Management Lessons

  1. ‘Be the change you want to see in the world’.

The leadership in an organisation must present themselves as authentic role models if they expect others to believe in them and follow them. Follower’s must see evidence of the leaders commitment to the change and one way to do that in a highly symbolic way is to start the change process by investing in and committing to a personal leadership transformation journey to enable you to best serve your teams during periods of transformational change.

For cultural change to be successful you need excellent role models. This may sound as common sense though often this is a fact that is paid lip service to in many organisations embarking on a cultural change project. As a leader you must be an authentic role model for the kind of behaviours, attitudes and thinking you want to see more of in your organisation. Our behaviours and attitudes reflect our underlying beliefs and values and they do not lie.

  1. Leaders can always improve their leadership capabilities’.

Regardless of how experienced a leader may be if they can remain open to their own personal development as leaders then they can in doing so model believing in and valuing continuous personal development and growth. They can stay in touch with current thinking regards leadership development and enable a culture of organisational learning.

  1. ‘Do not let your past define you’.

Often what has worked well for leaders in the past becomes deeply imbedded within their belief and value system. This can mean that the way leaders exercised control and influence in the past may be very challenging to let go off and embrace new methods, a new leadership style. However, we know that people are not their behaviours and so if the case for change is compelling and the vision attractive then leaders can and do open up their hearts and minds regards personal leadership transformation and this is a vital ingredient for successful cultural change and organisational transformation.



Our approach draws on techniques taught at many business schools on MBA programmes as well as innovative personal development methods rooted in the personal development movement. We harness analytical tools with reflexive learning tools to enhance the soft leadership skills that underpin our favoured model of conscious leadership. The aim of this approach is to make sure that our clients are able to maintain their focus on the present whilst leaning into their future and preparing themselves to keep leading their teams with conscious awareness. If you would like to learn more about our approach please contact myself at [email protected] and visit our website at www.culturalchange.co.uk