Get Your Organization Unstuck!

The JUMP! Innovative Change Model™

JUMP! Innovative Change Model™ © Robert S. Tipton, 2010

STAGE ONE: Get Ready

Stage One is often the most difficult of the four stages of innovative change in the JUMP! model. And, just to make it more interesting, it is also the most important stage to do well. Why? Good preparation yields great results. Great preparation yields excellent results. Excellent preparation yields transformational results. To begin by using an agricultural metaphor (you’ll see it show up here and there throughout the book), getting ready is like preparing the field—a process of removing the stumps, the weeds, the rocks, and other impediments to successful planting, growing, and harvesting. In addition, this stage includes adding the right nutrients, ensuring the correct season for growing, and having the confidence that your preparation will result in a successful outcome.

OUTCOMES: Overcoming the “status quo bias.” Getting your mind right. Opening up to new possibilities. Thinking differently. Breaking down old barriers. Rewriting your internal dialog. Replacing negative energy with positive energy.

STAGE TWO: Incubate

Continuing with the farming analogy, the incubation stage is where we trust that the seeds will germinate if we provide the right growing conditions: water, nutrients, sunlight, and pest control. Indeed, we don’t really know what happens inside a seed that causes it to germinate: We can observe it, predict it, and tell stories about it—but the detailed process remains mysterious. We have to trust that it will work.

OUTCOMES: Finding “the zone.” Allowing what wants to happen. Inviting uncertainty. Removing your ego from the situation. Nurturing the climate for creativity.


Here’s where the planting and harvesting comparison falls down a bit. Nature does occasionally create some Aha! moments. For example, some scientists believe that some significant shifts in evolution are not represented by corresponding fossil records. They suggest the reason we can’t find the fossils is because the fossils don’t exist! Now, I don’t know about this notion myself; I’m not a scientist, nor am I willing to enter into a debate about evolution, creationism, or intelligent design. But all of us have experienced some type of Aha! in our lives when we move right over the linear, step- by-step learning process. These moments might come in a dream, or they might come when we’re walking the dog or taking a shower, but for the vast majority of us, Aha! moments are very real indeed.

OUTCOMES: Leaps in consciousness. Strokes of insight. Moments of genius. Unexpected connections. Answers seeming to come from thin air.

STAGE FOUR: Make It Real

We can return effortlessly to the agricultural metaphor here. Nature’s motivation to create, to make things real, is incessant. We as a species are biologically motivated to go forth and multiply, as are all other living things. Even the lowly dandelion is compelled to create, to implement. Life is a powerful force. It’s just when our human frailties betray our innate tendencies to create do we fail to live in harmony with nature’s plan and we become stuck in the status quo.

Moving out of the status quo, getting in front of the pace and degree of change curve—all those things eventually require us to act. Preparing, incubating, and collecting Aha! moments are irrelevant if we don’t do something with them. The process of action requires both courage and passion. However, before we just run with each Aha! moment as it comes, the first thing we need to do in the Make It Real stage is to evaluate the best fit for a potential idea. Why? Sometimes uninspired Aha! moments masquerade as powerful Aha! experiences. Having courage and passion won’t help a bad idea turn into a good idea.

OUTCOMES: Courageously making decisions. Choosing the most appropriate “right” answers. Developing unqualified commitment to ongoing improvements. Demonstrating unequivocal expectations for success.

(copyrighted materials • Robert S. Tipton 2010)

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