My coaching workÂ begins with a client consultation that moves from vision to practical next steps, often in as little as anÂ hour. Â How does that work exactly?
Here are the steps:
1: Clarify Your Vision
If you are a social change visionary, you have a picture of a more just, equitable, sustainable, and compassionate future that you want to create. Â Your vision is your personal motivation to go out and change the world. Â It is also a north star that guides you in the later steps of the process.
Your vision is the picture of the future that stokes an enduring fire in your heart.
If you are unsure of your vision, try these steps to clarify it.
2: Map a Path fromÂ Your Vision to Now
TheÂ next step is to designÂ a pathÂ that links your vision to now. Â This roadmap is a series of causally-linked outcomes called a theory of change.
Your roadmapÂ will not be set it stone. Â It will change as your implement it. Â Its purpose is to show you that your vision is possible.
To create the roadmap we’ll start with your visionÂ and work backwards, movingÂ through a series of causallyÂ outcomesÂ until we get to the present. Â That firstÂ outcome – the one right after now – becomes the first goalÂ you’ll take action to achieve.
If this sounds confusing, don’t worry. Â Believe it or not, you probably already know all the elements of your theory of change. Â You just need to think about how they are connected. Â Think of theory of change as aÂ story about how your vision might happen.
To start, try to tell that story in five steps. Â What will happen right before your vision is realized? Â And before that? And before that? Â Keep on asking that question until you get to now.
3:Â Act, Reflect, Repeat
Now you have a goal to work towards, so you can make aÂ plan of action to achieve it. Â But it won’t be a complex orÂ longterm plan.
In the ten years that I’ve been working with change-makers, I’ve learned that making longterm plans is often a waste of time. Â There is a lot we still don’t know.
For this reason, I take a page from Lean Startup strategy and focus on identifying short-term actions that maximize learning.
First identityÂ actionsÂ you’ll take within theÂ next week. Â Then,Â at the end of the week,Â reflect on the results of those actions. Â Did you get the result you wanted and expected? Â If yes, how can you build on it? Â If no, how can you use the feedback information you gained to act more effectively next time?
And then you act again.
This is the process for changing the world. Â It starts with a big inspiring vision and ends with ongoing action to make that vision a reality.
Do you have a question about the above? Then come ask me in my free office hours:
Note: cross-posted, with minimal edits, from www.maryjoyce.com