Leading and Influencing Change with Daniel Lock

Which makes more impact… changing technology or people?

Of course the best answer is to make both change in harmony.

When companies make a big change in how they work, there’s two key factors:

1. Making the technological/organisational/process change.

2. Getting people to adopt and adapt to the change.

Project Management developed in the first half of the 20th Century.

Often though projects ran into problems because people were ignoring the change. They would continue to do things as they always had.

Change Management developed in the later decades of the 20th Century as a fix.

They work to bring people into harmony with the change.

Daniel Lock is a passionate advocate for advancing the field of change.

Besides leading his own projects Daniel coaches and trains other Change Managers.

Because Change Management is less understood it is often less visible or listened to.

Daniel helps CM’s to get the visibility, respect and influence they need to make effective change.



Daniel: [00:00:00] I do organizational change management, coaching, training and consulting work. I’ve been in the change and transformation, looking projects of all shapes and sizes for about 20 years mainly in Australia.

Daniel: Entirely in Australia until now living in Germany and for the last 10 11, 12 years, I’ve been focusing exclusively on organizational change, acting capacity of change manager or the change leader or and more recently change director. On large organizational change programs, so looking at the organizational change, which is the people side of change.

Daniel: So if there’s a large project, let’s say it’s a new CRM system is the technical aspects of that. And then there’s all the people side. So if the project manager prepares the solution for the organization, then the change manager prepares the people for the solution. I really like that analogy. And in terms of, so that’s what I do, is just managing and bringing about the people side of change to maximise, and I say organisational change management is about maximising the benefits of [00:01:00] change, there are some benefits that will accrue to change if the people side is not considered just by the technical solution being available but when people when people’s side of change is managed well then the people use the system better.

Daniel: They’re more skilled at using that system and they use it more often. And we’re just talking about systems, but organizational change extends to ways of working or new operating models or role changes many and varied types of changes, but ultimately it comes down to a change in the ways of working.

Daniel: If anybody needs to know, do or behave a different way, as part of this initiative, then we should be considering the organizational change skill sets to bring that about. 

Rob: Typically, do you kind of niche by what kind of 

Daniel: change? Personally, I’ve worked across, so if you think about changes in the org, org chain industry what change managers do, there’s people tend to do more types of change, or they might work in a particular kind of industry.

Daniel: For example, in Australia, financial services is big. So I’ve done a lot of financial services worked in financial services [00:02:00] mostly. But when you think about the types of changes could be this technical change, which we just talked about. So systems new technology, for example, as it mentioned CRM systems is just a good example, but many varied, but there could be organizational change or organizational restructure.

Daniel: It could be mergers and acquisitions of organizations. It could be Policy change worked on a more recently, risk policy transformation project changes all of the policies and the way they manage risk in the organization. So they’re going to think about what do people need to do differently as a result of this?

Daniel: And so you start breaking it down. So there’s all these different types of change. Some people tend to specialize in certain types of some people might. have deep experience, for example, in mergers and acquisitions, where they might have deep experience in even some people will specialize even in like SAP, for example, there might have deep understanding of SAP implementations in organizations from a change perspective.

Daniel: Most change managers will probably have two or three or four of those kind of specialties that they would work in [00:03:00] depends on what you’ve been exposed to over your career. That said, org change is really a process, like it could be applied to any discipline or any industry the processes of what you would do to drive change are very similar.

Daniel: There’s probably an argument made that if I walk, for example, if I walk into a financial services organization, I know very quickly who to speak to, the types of roles that they have there, the issues that they deal with. So it makes it a bit quicker for me to get up to speed. Whereas if I walk into a manufacturing Organization, which I’ve never ever worked in or for might take me a bit longer. The nature of their issues could be different. In manufacturing might have to a lot of unions that have to deal with. There’s a lot of issues that I would have to deal with that maybe wouldn’t be immediately obvious to me compared to say financial services or and so on and so forth.

Daniel: So people definitely would end up with specialties is what I’m saying, but the discipline itself, organizational change management and how to do it from end to end, those processes are fairly similar. It all comes down to people need to change their ways of working, shift their behavior. What is that [00:04:00] behavior shift and how do we make it happen?

Daniel: In the quickest, way possible. We don’t want to force people into that, because that’s not going to be a great. Sure, they might do it, but they’re not going to be willing. When we want to make sure that they’ve got the right skill set so that they’ve got the ability to do that.

Daniel: And we want to make sure that they’re super, like just energised and engaged in this whole process. 

Rob: What comes to mind immediately there is Mike Tyson’s quote. Everyone has a plan until they get punched in the face. 

Rob: How often does the plan work or how often does the plan need to change throughout the process?

Daniel: Quite a bit because if you think there’s one I worked on, it depends on the size of the project and how clear we are at the outset on the nature of the change. 

Daniel: I’ll give you a good example, like of where it’s changed radically. So I worked on a large general ledger replacement for a large financial services organization, a global organization replacing the accounting system.

Daniel: And that was probably end to end, like three and a half year process end to end. I was the last sort of year, 18 months of that process when I [00:05:00] came into the project. But for when it started and the goals and the business case for that project and where it finished up and the, what it delivered and in what timeframe and all just so different, which is perfectly normal.

Daniel: Now it doesn’t mean that was a failure or anything like that. They adjusted their goals, rethought about the processes, how the scope of this work, how much they could possibly do throughout that process. Any project is going to have its goals and visions for that. When it’s, when you get into the detail, most organizations, this one included wanted to buy off the shelf and just implement, but once you get into the nitty gritty of the processes and how systems interact with each other, the flow of data and the way people interact with that. Then that’s when things change. We’ve got to be in it and that will change. There’s so much change. And it’s a constant iteration of going through and developing what’s possible.

Daniel: With this system, what’s possible in our organization and the art of making the possible work in this organization. And yeah, there’s a lot of work, a lot of iteration in that, a great deal of difference until we get to a point where, okay we’re happy with this. We’ve got [00:06:00] some sort of baseline and this is what the change is and we’re going to implement it from here.

Daniel: But even then on implementation, if you think about it again, a systems implementation, you go live. And then we’ve got some sort of warranty period where we’re supporting that project. And then a lot of issues come out as people actually use the system in reality. And then all these issues pop up and we go, Oh, okay we didn’t think about it like that. 

Daniel: Like we do UAT and testing and so on. But when it really interacts with reality, these issues come up and we’ve got to think about what do we do now? We need to change it still more inevitably, yes. So there’s that as well. 

Rob: In that example, so it was a three and a half year project around.

Rob: And it was two years in before you got involved. So basically it was all project management and planning and analysis and all of that kind of stuff, like the technical stuff before 

Daniel: that. Oh no. So there was an organizational change lead that was and there was a change team set up and there was a change lead in the project.

Daniel: I don’t know. I can’t say from exactly when in that project. But I came into that project because they needed a new change lead. So they moved that other person on and I came in to [00:07:00] take over. 

Rob: So generally you and the project management team would be working at about the same time in parallel.

Daniel: Yes. Ideally I would be there and your best practice is your change management is there from the very beginning, maybe even before with a sponsor to help articulate the setup of this project and start campaigning why this project’s important, setting up the vision, setting up that communications strategies, getting people engaged and involved and really taking people along that entire journey.

Daniel: That as any change manager will tell you, does not always happen. It’s not unusual to be brought in late to a project and that’s happened to me several times where they’ve had no change management on it until that point. And then, you’ve got to try and, assess the situation and okay what we can do here.

Daniel: We don’t have much time. We still got implementation and there’s all this inertia for why it must be done at this particular time. How do we make it? How do we make it work? And yeah definitely that happens and it’s not the ideal scenario and, change managers are good, but we’re not miracle workers.

Rob: Basically you’re dealing with lots of variables. 

Rob: When you’re dealing with technology and [00:08:00] technological change, there’s less variables and it’s, whereas when you’re dealing with people, it’s much more subjective. 

Rob: I’m guessing one of the key variables is it’s a sponsor.

Rob: I imagine some are, it’s their project and they’re really ambitious with it and really excited about it. And some, it maybe is been the job that no one wanted to do, but they’ve been delegated to, is that the case? 

Rob: Does that make a difference to your, the impact of your 

Daniel: work? Yeah, absolutely.

Daniel: Taking the systems as an example there before. So just because of the ambiguity, so you’ve got your list, less variability with with the solution. There’s a huge amount of variability actually with the technical solutions, huge amounts, and that always, and that’s constantly updating and being changed and refined and iterated on.

Daniel: And that is constantly having impacts about, okay, how people will interact. With that system or process or ways of working and how their ways of working are therefore impacted. And that makes it really hard because you’ve got to design training and you’ve got to try and get your training and capability development knowledge transfer up and running for these people.

Daniel: And it’s constantly iterating and changing right up, and through the testing [00:09:00] periods and so on and so forth. So that becomes quite challenging. So there’s a lot of variables and a lot of uncertainty. It’s got to line up until you can get to that go live period. 

Daniel: To your point about leadership sponsorship is absolutely a key success factor for successful organizational change.

Daniel: And if the leader is not out there and clearly visible, that can really sink or they don’t have a project really win. 

Daniel: There’s a few key roles is there’ll be a sponsor that’s, maybe is accountable for that project and it’s a successful delivery from a financial perspective and it’s all of the other deliverables and what it should be doing and quality and so on and so forth, but there will also be these other People usually say if you’re implementing a CRM system is going to be the head of sales or general manager of sales or something that’s on the receiving end of that change.

Daniel: Who’s going to be not the primary sponsor, but they are the primary affected user group. And they’re going to have a huge amount of power, almost veto power over that project. And you really want to understand those people. And then there’ll be technology people that have a huge amount of influence and [00:10:00] say how this happens.

Daniel: So there’s usually two, probably three groups with differing interests in how this project should be delivered. So you, maybe your IT people might have certain quality aspects in mind and they want to use certain tools and processes to make sure that a quality outcomes achieved.

Daniel: The sales in this example, we’re using the CRM example, that sales general manager. Unless it’s perfect, they don’t want to know about it, but it’s going to influence, impact their sales or their business, and how he’s measured or she’s measured and their, KPIs, that’s going to be a big barrier, what’s their incentive structure for this.

Daniel: And then you’ve got the sponsor whose job is it to, sell the vision while that’s important to the organization. And in drive and make sure, it works from a benefits perspective and brings everybody together. So it’d be the, that primary sponsor role becomes a real integrated role in many ways, but it’s a vital 

Rob: role.

Rob: And often to adjudicate between the two, because what you’ve described there is you’ve got, the typical technologist has a particular personality style, if we’re going to stereotype and the Sales is a completely opposite and it’s two completely [00:11:00] different value sets, different ways of communicating.

Rob: I can imagine there’s often a source of a lot of 

Daniel: conflict. Absolutely. And if you think about those, like archetypes of people and personalities it’s completely different. It’s completely different and the, their incentive structures are just so different in an organization. So different.

Daniel: And then here we are, change managers creating PowerPoint decks and slide decks. Not that you want to be hiding behind a computer, but you’ve got to codify information and then present it for decision which inevitably goes through that process. And you’ve got your IT people that are just thinking, what you would do is wear suits and do PowerPoint decks in organizations and so on.

Daniel: What are you, what value are you delivering? 

Rob: This is really my kind of thing. This is right, I’m really liking the idea of these three people. So what I’m really interested in is what, okay, so you start this new project, right? What exactly, can you take us through what happens from what you do through the project?

Rob: Oh, 

Daniel: okay, sure. Look in the beginning of project assuming you’re starting with the beginning of the project, [00:12:00] like with the. And even if you’re not, so you’re just coming in halfway, you’ve got to get understanding of what is the goal here? What is the business case? Who are the, who’s impacted as a result of this?

Daniel: What’s the expected benefit to the organization? 

Daniel: Who are the winners and losers potentially, as there’s always going to be winners and losers to some extent. And then you want to start understanding just this organizational desktop of the change proposed, the context in which it’s being proposed the experience with the organization or those departments, depending on the size of the organization, very large organization, certain departments will have certain subcultures. What’s their experience with implementing change? Has it gone before? Has it gone well? Has it not gone well?

Daniel: And so you really want to understand all of that, in that context. People will advocate for in depth readiness assessments and to the degree that you can get time and scope to do that, then they’re a good thing to do, but mostly, you’re going to go in there, and have a few conversations with people, maybe run a workshop or two to understand the scope of things to begin with in conjunction with your project leads and really understand the scope of this.

Daniel: And [00:13:00] people will tell you all of those things. And you’ve got to try and Keep an objective mind about whether or not that’s reality. It’s just complaints. 

Daniel: What’s the issue and the real issues in there and narrow it down to the things that, you need to influence because this will start the organizational context.

Daniel: And for example, the experience the organizations have with change will influence the way you message things and the communication and if they’ve had a really bad experience, you might need to go in and address that up front and who’s the best person to address that.

Daniel: And is it going to start thinking if they’re starting from a pretty good solid base, we’re pretty good at change here. We’ve had some good experiences in the past. Then, you don’t need to worry about that so much. And so you can move more into future pacing, for example.

Daniel: But if you start future pacing when there’s all this issue in the background and upset about how things were or were not done in the previously. Then, people will be quite resistant to you upfront. So they, some of the issues that need dealing with in terms of to answer your question about what happens after that, really after that, you’re going to start getting into more detail.

Daniel: At this point, [00:14:00] you will have an understanding of the high level impacts to the organization, broadly who’s impacted, numbers of people impacted, starting to form a view on how messaging should be formed. In fact, you’ll start some messaging. During this process at a tentative level. And then after that you start getting into the detail of readiness and impacts assessment.

Daniel: Depending on how far the projects through and how much they know about what’s changing and in what way you start understanding, okay how’s that going to affect Rob, the accountant in the sales department, and he’s going to, Rob’s perhaps a Daily user of the, accounting process and we’re changing his system.

Daniel: And what does that mean? 

Daniel: For Rob and his team and, we’re going to do this by group and team by team, you might have to go right down to individual level depending on, on, on who, the nature of the work that’s being, that’s changing. And you certainly want to make sure that everybody’s included and nobody left out as well.

Daniel: That’s really important. Have you captured everybody? Do you have all of the impacts? It’s really important. I just keep asking that all the time because I’ve learned the hard way not to leave people out. So when I left two people out [00:15:00] of this project once two people, they worked in this, wholesale banking area.

Daniel: And it turns out that they were the two people that did the very largest deals of all of them, worth hundreds of millions of dollars. Huge impact. And we had to stop the whole project, go in there, fix that. And then, Go again, so don’t leave people out. Then after that, once we’ve got a good handle on the impacts you’re going to start, you will have formed in your mind, a good strategy and usually you’ll have that documented in some fashion that could be documented on.

Daniel: If you’re an Agile project in that working in Agile environment, walls with sticky notes, that’s fine, more often working with project management offices and large corporates with bureaucracy, you have that documented in a formal document, and it may have gone through sign off processes, you have some strategy, you will have formed a strategy and a point of view at this point, of which then you would craft your communications plans and engagement very much two way. 

Daniel: And your capability development, knowledge transfer and training plans. And so if you think about new projects with technology, that’s radical shift in the nature of the project they’re doing you could have large and varying [00:16:00] impacts on people’s knowledge that they need to get up to speed on the new project.

Daniel: Another thing about that general ledger application, for example, that was huge. Like just the amount of knowledge and accounting processes. We had to train them on in this new system was just massive. It was about 1700 users, which is not that much in the scheme of things, but just the detail that had to go to, and you’re dealing with accounts, you want to know absolutely every detail, and we’ll ask every detail question you could possibly think of, and then, each person had to go through, one group might have five modules, and, another group might have 12 modules, and, just the complexity of that on a global level was just mind numbing and so it can be quite a big challenge depending on your process, but, I think about the risk transformation project, there was much less technology and ways of working impacts and much bigger differences in approaches and knowledge application in terms of what they should be doing and how they should interpret policies in this new regime, as opposed to the way it was interpreted before the new changes were implemented and so I had to think about, okay how do we get this?[00:17:00] 

Daniel: We impart this knowledge transfer and how do we observe these new behaviors? What are these new behaviors and how do we then get people to think about this? 

Daniel: One of the approach we ended up taking for that was we ran people through a workshop style experience where they could play with and interpret their, the policies.

Daniel: All their particular instance and their group and their context and then report back out and say this is why we interpret it this way. And this is what we see. And then corporate, had an opportunity to provide feedback on this is how we would see it. And this is how we think the regulators are interpreting this data these policies in this new regime. 

Daniel: So from one extreme, here’s a system, how you need to use it to get a particular accounting outcome. And here’s a risk policy transformation. How we need to interpret it in a new regime. How do you train for that and manage that knowledge transfer?

Daniel: So that’s where you start to really, after having done that analysis, 

Rob: you form a view. It’s a huge amount of skills that you’re encompassing from like negotiation, relationship management, marketing, training, and administration and project management. It’s [00:18:00] a huge level. It’s really, when I look at it, it’s really about knowledge or information arbitrage. It’s an interesting perspective, yeah. You’re basically taking knowledge that someone else knows and passing it on. So 

Daniel: The knowledge is co created. It’s pretty much 

Rob: That sounds like an enormous amount of domain knowledge, very specific.

Rob: How much do you need to know about that change? 

Daniel: As an individual, you need to you need to know quite a bit, but from a particular context. And your business analysts and technical people will have a certain perspective, even in the risk transformation, you’ve got risk professionals who are interpreting regulations for their context.

Daniel: So the technical people in that instance, as opposed to I. T. professionals. And so we really need to understand and go through this co creation of knowledge development to understand, okay, how do we interpret this change in this new technical requirement in this, in our context because this was a financial services company.

Daniel: If I had to go from that financial services to another financial services [00:19:00] organization serving more or less the same markets and customer base, it would be interpreted in a very different way contextually. And so you’ve got to set up these processes where it’s continually the change management

Daniel: practitioner and their team is working with these technical people to interpret, okay, what’s changing and what does that mean in reality? And how do we sense check that? So you’ve got to have these end users in that conversation to co create that perspective. You can’t have all 1700 users or 5, 000 people or whatever the number is involved in that.

Daniel: So you have to get representatives and you’ve got to continually co create that knowledge, that new knowledge that gets created for the organization and then work at ways to disseminate validate that and then have it disseminated. So it’s a very in my opinion, change management, a very creative process.

Daniel: And it’s a very it’s a generative process. 

Rob: Generative as in the more that you do it, the more that you, 

Daniel: you’re generating and creating new knowledge. 

Rob: So when you said two companies could be very similar, but the way that they would do it is different.

Rob: Is that because of the culture of the [00:20:00] company, the structure 

Daniel: of the company? All of them. It’s all about the culture. The structure of the organization, they obviously serve slightly different markets and customer subsets. Being a competitive space, but they might be delivering loans or they just go about it very differently.

Daniel: And structured very differently. And so the way it’s interpreted and implemented into given organization. And then there’s all the history of this system. Does things like this way and it was built this way with this in mind back, 1990, but now it’s very different now and when you’re talking about this, very old and large institutions.

Rob: That’s my kind of thing trying to work out differences in that. I enjoy that conflict. So what is it you most enjoy about your work? Why that of all the choices you could have done? 

Daniel: Yeah, it’s a good question.

Daniel: I really like the intersection of the technical, the project management, the technical components of the, technical work that’s in development and the people side as it’s still delivered that integrator on a mindset. I did project management. I don’t really like all of the finance monitoring and the [00:21:00] reporting and all of the governance structures that go with it.

Daniel: Certainly they exist in any level of, in any type of role in an organization. But I really enjoyed that more creative process. And I feel like I got that more so in change management than in project management. 

Rob: I think you get more from people, to me, it’s more satisfying working with people where you see the change in the person.

Daniel: Exactly. Yeah. The change in the person and the consideration to go with it. Absolutely. 

Rob: I’m curious about how did you get into, cause 20 years ago, change management was relatively new, wasn’t it? The change management as 

Daniel: a discipline. Yeah, definitely. In the last 20 years, even in Australia, it’s probably far more, mature, it seems to be far more mature than the rest of the globe for some reason. There’s a lot of innovation in terms of people coming up with innovative software products and approaches. Three come to mind, just all out of Australia. It’s quite remarkable. Prosci, the big company, they’re the U. S..

Daniel: 20 years ago, I got into it via process improvement. So I was working as a team leader in a collections department, and they had introduced all this [00:22:00] Lean Six Sigma as a method to, improve their processes, and they had a few distinct projects set up.

Daniel: I got involved in that and really enjoyed that. I got a lot out of it and then very quickly transitioned into that as a full time role and then that just became my career and I started doing process improvement work. That was circa 2005 through 2010, 11 and then I moved into sort of business and our project management and business analysis.

Daniel: Then around 2012, I was working in Sydney. I’d moved from Melbourne to Sydney and I was working for a Melbourne bank and I was running it. I was like, I was doing an analyst job. And with the head office in Melbourne, I was like, I was struggling to find the next job.

Daniel: They’ll say, you need to live in Melbourne. And I was like, okay, I’m gonna have to look for a job in Sydney for, a new company. So I started looking around, which is not unusual to work in the contract kind of space for a long time. And I had worked with change managers and I thought, I like what they do.

Daniel: I think I can do that. And I’d done a lot of their work for the project I’d just done. And I went into the market and just edited my resume and started to pull out, the change management components and said, Oh I’m looking for change management jobs now. Started ringing up the recruiters, talking to them [00:23:00] about it.

Daniel: And this job came up in another bank and it was a change management job. And so I applied for it. And at first the recruiter said, no, you’re not qualified, not a change manager because they blinkered in that regard. I said, look, mate, this is in the foreign exchange department. You don’t need to worry about that.

Daniel: They wouldn’t know a change manager from their mom. They really just, they don’t know. All they care about is domain knowledge. I’ve got lots of that in foreign exchange. Just tell them you’ve got a guy who understands foreign exchange and they’ll be fine. And sure enough I got the job and that set me on a whole new career specializing in change management. So it worked and I’m super glad that it worked out because I fell into, I fell into my own on that, came into my own on that as a discipline really got a lot of that. And I had some mentors at that time that showed me through it. And I had some guidance and that really helped. I just had a facility for it. It flowed very easily. 

Rob: So what were the innate skills or talents that you have meant you were suited 

Daniel: to it? Look, I think a people orientation. Number one. I think I’ve come from the process improvement and project management, business analysis disciplines as well.

Daniel: [00:24:00] So I had training in our projects work and I knew how projects work and so I could work with a project manager very easily in that regard. Then a particular skill that I do have, and I had from an early, very early age was running workshops. And so I would run large scale workshops. And I had since had lots of training and workshops and facilitating workshops as a key primary tool to integrate all of these particular viewpoints to get an outcome and really accelerate change.

Daniel: And so that was a particular skill set that I had. So there was the characteristics of my sort of makeup as well as skills that I developed over time that just lent itself to to the gestalt of organizational change management. 

Rob: Okay. That makes me curious now just to tally up when you were young, what was 

Daniel: your dream job?

Daniel: I had a newspaper, delivered newspapers when I was nine years old. And then I employed my younger brother to help me with it. So I had somewhat of an entrepreneurial bent, if you will or an ability to think, okay I want something I can make it work for me. And I got it, and then I, as soon as I was able to, I went and got a job at Hungry Jack, which is the Australian version of Burger King.

Daniel: [00:25:00] And just went around to five or six. McDonald’s and Burger Kings or Hungry Jacks gave my resume and said, look, can I have a job? And law of large numbers, get a little bit better at each one. And it got me a job and then and then I handed over the paper, I ended up getting handed over to my younger brother.

Daniel: I would say a little bit entrepreneurial. So I always had a dream that I would create something of my own. I like to go after opportunities that are exciting and interesting, but they don’t have a payoff for me as well. 

Rob: Another big change was you talked about Australia being like change management happening early there.

Rob: What brought you to move over to Germany? 

Daniel: Oh my wife my wife is German and we have two children now, age seven and five. And so they have German passports just. Although they’re born in Australia, they have German passports because my wife does. And we had it on our agenda that we wanted to move over in 2016.

Daniel: We were just pregnant with our first, actually, after having been married and A childhood friend of mine had been living in France and they came and visited for Christmas. They come visit us while we were holidaying in Germany, visiting family. And they had [00:26:00] three kids at the time who were young.

Daniel: They were speaking fluent French and they’d been living in France for two years, two or three years. And just temporarily, and they eventually, they shortly thereafter were due back in Australia. But we were quite inspired by that. We thought, wow, we’d like to have that for our kids. Wouldn’t that be great?

Daniel: And so it was on our agenda for a long time. We were living in Sydney and having a good time and that was working for us. And then COVID came and we’re thinking, okay, would we have done it now? And there was a few other opportunities on the horizon and so on. And then eventually we got to post COVID.

Daniel: And a few factors led, it came together, living arrangements, working arrangements, and a few other option alternatives and options and things came together. And so we moved. Kids are doing super well. We’ve been here for a bit over six months now. And the kids are really starting to accelerate and their language is they’re now, fluent German.

Daniel: For the most part, they’re really getting there. They’re still young kids but they’re speaking German, and that’s going to set them up when they’re adults. They won’t have the kind of barriers I have. They’ll be able to move about Europe, but they’ll be able to speak German. When they have that German culture as a base for them, I think it’ll be tremendous, would be [00:27:00] tremendous for them.

Daniel: A view is that we’ll probably still go back to Australia. I don’t know if you, have you been to Sydney 

Rob: or been to Australia? No, I’ve never been to Australia. 

Daniel: It is a ridiculously good place to live. The weather’s great depending on which city you’re in for the most part. And so yeah we’ll more than likely, we’ll, our plan is to go back there at some point.

Rob: Neighbours or home and away and that, and it’s yeah, it does look idyllic. It’s just 

Daniel: so far away. It is. It is a long way away. Home and away is in the North shore of Sydney. And that, that’s, that’s probably one of the best parts of Australia. Like it’s really good.

Rob: That did make me wonder why you would leave when most people Yeah, a lot of people say that. I can see the kids, I think to be growing up in two cultures is really powerful. Oh yeah, 100%. It stops them from the blindness. I grew up in London, but I’ve moved to East Anglia small town like Ipswich about an hour out of London.

Rob: But you do tend to see, there is quite a lot of a very small town mentality and people have never left the town never experienced anything else. Can’t even think of the world, bigger than that. I like, like I used to do some work [00:28:00] with kids and it was it’s quite a deprived catchment area.

Rob: And you say like, where would you like to go? Trying to get some aspiration from them. They go Felixstowe, which is 20 minutes away in the coast. And it’s if you could go anywhere and they’re likeLowestoft or Great Y armouth and it’s like an hour away and it’s like they just couldn’t comprehend even going abroad.

Daniel: I think though one of the things I that I’ve come to realize though, ’cause I actually grew up in Adelaide and then moved to Sydney in 2011. One of the things I miss about, I’m a little bit envious of people that live in east Anglia all their lives and never moved is the sense of community.

Daniel: That I think is lost in some ways. So I’ve got friends all over the world and they’re doing all different things and we’re all doing different things. But I think in some regards, that sense of community in one place as it evolves and changes is something that I said is missing a little bit of my life because I’ve moved about so much.

Rob: Yeah, I can understand that. There’s a sense of confidence it brings and a sense of security. The downside is it also tends to be that they don’t trust anyone [00:29:00] who’s not from there. They’re often not very open to outsiders because they, then they feel threatened because it’s not something that they’re comfortable with or used to.

Rob: There are pluses and minuses to it. I do sometimes wonder, maybe if you don’t have that aspiration, it’s a smaller world, and so you’re more comfortable and confident with it. So what has been the biggest change, apart from weather?

Daniel: The weather is significant. So I probably wouldn’t recommend people do this when they change, but I’ve changed everything in terms of. So country, language the culture, the weather and the way I do my work as well has changed quite a bit. And going from, the contracting world, which is, looks and smells a lot more like an employee kind of relationship for the most part to being I’m more, whilst I’ve had a company in Australia and self employed in that regard, like a contracting regard.

Daniel: Now actually, generating clients myself and developing, products and developing more of an online presence and a brand, if you will, is quite different, it’s quite different [00:30:00] work. And so that, that’s been quite a big change, I think that I’ve been challenged by just bringing that all together. It’s been having some wins and, things are slowly building, but it’s definitely been a big change. I think most people would probably recommend don’t change all of those things at once, just change one of 

Rob: them. Yeah, true.

Rob: How does remote work play into that? Would you know, I’ve been fabulous. 

Daniel: Cause cause that’s entirely remote in this basement here. I’m going to set up a bit of a YouTube studio going forward which is why I’m wearing this cause it’s a little bit cold. The heater is outside the door. But just the remote works fabulous. So I’ve got a client coming up to some work in London and we’ll spend a day there for them, but the rest of it will be remote my coaching clients as all remote, all over the world, just remarkable.

Daniel: Yeah, it’s been really good in that regard. I don’t know if that would have been entirely possible pre COVID. Yeah, 

Rob: I remember before COVID even I used to have physical meetings, used to physically go out and, meet people and that. And now it’s just all Zoom and it’s so much easier.

Rob: No travel time. 

Daniel: Yeah, exactly. It’s so much more productive and you’ve got family and kids. It’s just, [00:31:00] it’s magic. That said, I think for organizations, it’s a double edged sword. I think, like there’s pluses and minuses and you still want to build in person meetings. And that’s why me doing that one day in London for that client is the right idea to build that connection off the back of which you can do the rest of it remotely.

Daniel: And coming together periodically, I think is a great idea. And young people in particular, they’ve got to learn from leaders and behavior from the rest of the organization. And young people want to meet people. They want to, they meet their life partners sometimes at work.

Daniel: It’s a bit hard to do when you’re sitting at home by yourself. 

Daniel: I think we’re in early days of this whole remote working to stay, but we’re still working it out. 

Rob: I think it’s interesting. The impact is going to have on cultures over time. Like you say, there is that, model and transfer. So you mentioned that you’ve got a change transformation community. 

Daniel: Yeah, that’s right. It’s really around a community for change managers, people who either want to become change managers or change managers and practitioners and want to learn from each other and share knowledge.

Daniel: I have a website and I have a bunch of newsletter subscribers and then I’ve created more recently this change community [00:32:00] online. I’m going to put some training up there eventually. For people to access as well. But yeah, that’s all there for people who want to become change managers or people who are change managers as opposed to the broader change and transformation and project people more broadly.

Daniel: So much as they’re keen on, on becoming change managers or really understanding and getting involved in that discipline, you’re welcome. But it’s really for that community. 

Rob: Yeah. So if someone happens to see this and they’re thinking about or they’re new in their journey of being a change manager where should they go to, to look for it?

Rob: The 

Daniel: simplest way is for them to go to my website daniellock. com and register, sign up for the newsletter and they’ll get an invite on the back of that that newsletter, if they’d like to join the community, they don’t have to, they still access all of my website, myself through LinkedIn and everybody elsewhere on that.

Daniel: But yeah, my website, daniellock. com go there. It’s all there. Okay. 

Rob: Change management is new, it’s 20, 30 years in. So where do you see the future of [00:33:00] it going? 

Daniel: Oh, really good question. So I think the future of change management is only going to continue to grow in influence in the organization.

Daniel: So for many, change management is still subservient, say, to the project management discipline and the PMO. And a lot of people that I work with and coach feel like they don’t have a voice at the table, at the decision making table and don’t have the kind of influence that I know that they can bring.

Daniel: There’s a couple of things going on there. I think one is that we need to address, but one is business acumen and really producing real world results that can be measured and touched and felt. Too often change management and landing change safely is it’s a risk mitigation effort for leaders, until their hair’s on fire, they don’t know they have a problem, and ultimately people only buy out of having problems anyway they often don’t see the need for it until something’s going wrong. But increasingly, it’s going to become part of the strategic conversations of organizations. And what I mean by this is, in Australia, there was a regulation called CPS 230 that was put out for certain class of organizations, financial services [00:34:00] is one of them where they had to have in place processes for managing risk and change.

Daniel: It’s explicitly called out how that’s affected, but what that meant was, when it comes to the delivered risk into organisations, change management needs to have robust change management policies and processes observed and in place. And so that’s only going to continue throughout throughout the world and throughout organizations as people realize that the positive impact that well managed change has on brand reputation, employee engagement, and therefore productivity and outcomes of organizations. And so it’s only going to become more and more important. There’s some again, coming out of Australia, some great work.

Daniel: People are producing software to help organizations understand and interpret select data for change as opposed to just projects that can be then fed up into project management offices. Increasingly people, organizations and in my community are setting up centers of excellence or change management offices or transformation offices of which change management sort [00:35:00] of is either set front and center and I was saying the case of a change management office or, definitely the right way.

Daniel: A key part of that structure in the case of a transformation office. And so it’s only gonna continue to grow and only become more and more important on executives and boards agenda of how well are we managing change in this organization? How much change do we have in this organization?

Daniel: How well are we integrating that change in this organization? And something can continue to grow. And I think in 10, 15 years time, it’ll be significantly more sophisticated than it is today. 

Rob: I think generally when you look traditionally HR has been the the one with least involvement.

Rob: Like when you look at how managing director or CEO is picked it’s usually sales, finance, marketing as opposed to HR. And often HR has been the one complaining that they’re not. taken as seriously. I think there’s a general shift for me when I look at business that used to be more logistical, it was moving things.

Rob: And now I think it’s more moving and mining people. I think [00:36:00] emotional intelligence is going to become more and more important where relationships are more important because it means that we get more out of people which in knowledge work is key. So yeah, I can see change only becoming more and more important.

Rob: I think what a lot of people don’t understand is how difficult it is for people to change. I think that’s often been taken for granted. Whereas, when you look at people personally. Everyone makes New Year’s resolutions, like I went to the gym a month ago and it was stacked out every time I went. 

Rob: I went this week, my gym tells me how many people are in there and it was half the people of the time before but you go in January and you’re like, oh they’ll have died off. But we don’t recognize that those same people that are struggling to pay off their debts, to stick to their diets, stick to their gym routine manage their relationships at home are the same people that we’re working with and employing.

Rob: And if they can’t do it for the things that they care about you’re imposing some change. I know it’s not imposed and it’s brought along, but it’s basically you want them [00:37:00] to change for your reasons. You’ve got to make it so much easier and more inviting for them to change. 

Daniel: Oh, absolutely.

Daniel: Absolutely. And. One of the things you’ve got with work environments, at least you’ve got like a social pressure that helps move things along a little bit more than say individual change, going to the gym or regularly so that there’s things like that you can leverage in organizational change.

Daniel: And that’s why organizational change is different from coaching people in individual behaviors. 

Rob: That’s an interesting point, because one of the key things to stick into, say going to the gym is make it more social. 

Daniel: In developing a community, exactly, and an identity as well around who, am I a person who exercises?

Daniel: All of these factors definitely A part of the conversation for organizational change, but there’s a different context. I think that comes forward with it, but I think you’re absolutely right in terms of we are dealing with people who have all of those experiences in life and challenges going on all the time, including ourselves, the ones leading change actually, and the sponsors and leaders, a lot of people [00:38:00] forget that about the stress of leaders.

Daniel: We’re quick to LinkedIn’s quick to rag on leaders. And how much of a crap job they’re doing and rightly but it’s an extraordinarily hard job. And of course they put their hand up for it. So no one’s crying for them necessarily, but it’s a very challenging job and they’ve got their own issues and personal issues and hangups and confidence issues and going to the gym or not going to the gym or whatever it is they’re dealing with, relationship issues and stresses.

Daniel: And then also leading change. I think that’s a big reason why personal development is so important as individuals if you want to grow your career and your leader is that, you need to be able to have some capacity to deal with the stress of leading change or driving an organization or steering a venture or steering a ship, whatever it is.

Daniel: You need to have some capacity latent capacity. And so personal development and the way you deal with managing your own life becomes super important. 

Rob: As businesses become more and more competitive and more global, there is more time pressure, less people doing the same amount of work and constantly having to do more and more [00:39:00] Which to your point about leadership, I think again like a change leader, a leader has to have a huge amount of skills and I think often there’s too much pressure on the leader and not enough thought given to developing the people.

Rob: This is really where I come from if you can unite a team, you can create a high performing team, there’s less pressure on the leader. Someone might have inherited a team. And the team might have they might have had failed like leaders or change, but it’s built up a resistance and there’s like calluses and there becomes a hardened culture against change and against, oh, it’s just like the new fad.

Rob: If you put someone into that, you’re basically setting them up to fail. And this is where I think you need to have the right relationships, the right culture, all of that stuff so that people are ready to move. So I can see completely where you’re coming from on 

Daniel: that.

Daniel: Yeah, you’re absolutely right. And that’s the thing about change. What I outlined, say in a process, that’s this linear process for, managing change. But in reality, it’s messy and you’ve got to get in there and make [00:40:00] sure that the teams that you’re engaging right at the front line and getting that people engaged, pull them along, involved in the design and it’s very much an iterative process in that regard.

Daniel: A complex political system, which we haven’t touched on so much today, it’s a political system as well. And so that’s another consideration that I think people need to make when you’re when you’re implementing change. And yeah, like it’s a big, beautiful, complex beast.

Daniel: It’s good that we’ve got specialists that can focus on project management, analysis, finance, team development or change and really, help everybody have a greater experience of their work life. 

Rob: I think that’s really what the industrial revolution brought which has brought our economy to where it is and more we specialize on strengths basically the more people can thrive financially and emotionally.

Rob: Okay. Just to wrap up. So you talked about your community, but if someone was looking for a change, why might someone choose you? What, why might they be looking for you? Who might they be? And how could they contact you? 

Daniel: Yeah. I’m from a coaching point of view, I’m working with change managers who it’s a few different ends of the [00:41:00] spectrum here, three. 

Daniel: One is someone who wants to become a change manager from another discipline, say business analysis for example. So they want to come and get some coaching and training from me And then I usually work with them on how they actually make that transition from an analyst to change manager, for example. 

Daniel: There’s people who are seeing a lot more of these people who are new to change, so their organization knows enough that they should have a change manager on board, but there’s no real infrastructure for them to support them and so they’re possibly on their first project and they’re really struggling. And so they’re reaching out for help as well. 

Daniel: I’m also working with People who are further along in their change management career and journey and they’re looking to accelerate and go from change manager to say change director, for example and that’s less coaching around tools and templates and it’s more about career and positioning and getting a seat at the table from decision making perspective so there are three types of people I’m working from working with on a change management perspective, coaching and training.

Daniel: I’ve got some training coming out soon. We’re working on feverishly working on that this morning. It’s taking a very long time to articulate the training that I want to put out [00:42:00] there. So there’ll be some training coming soon, which I’ll announce via my email newsletter list. 

Daniel: 2023 wasn’t a great year for consulting work, but my inbox is starting to light up with a few inquiries about actual consulting work as well, which is to actually help organizations actually, on the tools, implementing change in an organization.

Daniel: And so there’s that as well. So it’s a full gamut. And I’m looking at growing that. My particular focus though, ideally would be 80 percent of my work would be on the coaching and training business over the next three to five years. 

Rob: It sounds like you’ve got a lot to keep me busy.

Rob: I’m getting a picture that you like the variety. I do 

Daniel: like the variety for me, the variety, like it’s in this big umbrella, right? So when, when I was doing change director roles the big part of that’s leading teams and coaching people developing strategies.

Daniel: And I feel in many ways I’m doing this outsourced director role, but for maybe multiple companies and multiple people in a more of an abstract model, which we can do more so in 2024 than we could 10 years ago. It’s very much the same work like when I have conversations about change with a client in New Zealand versus someone in London. 

Daniel: [00:43:00] It’s like they’re just part of my team when I was working, two years ago and I was having similar conversation. It’s really very similar. The remuneration model is obviously very different in the way that’s all put together in terms of a business context, but the actual conversations, it feels very seamless.

Rob: I suppose the 

Daniel: constant is people. That’s right. And what’s fascinating is just the world over, the similarity of issues that people are dealing with. Yeah. It’s fascinating. Just the similarity and issues and risks and just their goals and aspirations and yeah, fascinating.

Daniel: Really, it’s super excited to be doing this work and I really hope that it really develops the way I 

Rob: envisage it. It does sound fascinating. Okay. Thank you for sharing your time and sharing your insights and a little bit more about you. I’ve learned a lot about the whole change management 

Daniel: world.

Daniel: Thank you. When I get a podcast up and running, I’ll have to get you on and I can ask you the questions. 

Rob: Thank you. I look forward to it.

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