90 Second Leadership – Leading Change: Napoleon’s Rule of Thirds
I want to talk to you about leading people through change. We’re going to look at Napoleon’s rule of thirds.
The reality is if you can’t lead people, you can’t lead change. Napoleon said there were three distinct divisions in his army. I know what you’re thinking, Napoleon had more than three divisions … And he did. But Napoleon said that when it came to leading change, breaking camp and moving on to take new ground, he had three distinct groups of people.
First were the people who are always ready for change. He was excited to have those people on board, and what he did was secure their commitment early on.
The next group of people is the group we’re most likely to focus on in our churches. This is the “I’m never going to change” crowd. They’re the keepers of the status quo. Anytime you try to change and go a new direction, they have pitchforks and torches ready. They do not want to change. Unfortunately, that is the group that we as leaders often focus on the most, and we spend all our time, effort, and energy with this group.
Napoleon said to spent the most time with the people ready for change and establish wins early to bring over the remaining third who is waiting to see which group will win. This group wants to see where the momentum is going, so as soon as you start telling stories from the group ready for change, you’ll begin bringing people back through from the status quo crowd. Focus on getting those early wins and gaining commitment by telling stories and casting the vision to keep everyone moving forward.
Now that you have Napoleon’s Rule of Thirds, what are you going to do about it?