Change Management is Necessary for Modifications to Take Hold

As a change agent I question that is often asked is “why is change management necessary”?  The answer is found in the reason for the project or change initiative itself.

A project management checklist consists of the following:

  • Project Name
  • Goal – Scope Statement
  • Objectives
  • Constraints
  • Risks
  • Assumptions
  • Estimated Costs
  • Breakdown of Deliverables (Gantt Chart)
  • Tracking Progress (Gantt Chart)
  • Project Closing – Shared & Lessons Learned, Thanks, Final Report, Close Contracts and Accounting Codes

Change management is the necessary piece that integrates the modifications into the business.  The checklist is the doing portion.  Change management is the piece of having the process tweaks to ensure the implementation is used by the organization as a whole.

Need further details?  Contact me to discuss.

Solo and Small Biz Change Agent, Marie-Helene Sakowski at



Self – Awareness is Necessary for Change

The Oxford dictionary defines awareness as the “knowledge or perception of a situation or fact”.  Given that perception is a large part of awareness the question come to mind – what  types of awareness  is brought to the workplace?

Are you someone who shows up at work with the awareness of it being difficult?  Or having past experiences cloud your judgement of a current situation?

Or are you someone who comes to work with the awareness that different opinions from your own are necessary for growth and change?  Do you focus on the needs of other worker s before your own?

Having the latter part of perception and awareness is required to be successful at work.  The shadow side of focusing on difficult and the negative negates having positive and lasting change to occur.

Need further details?  Contact me to discuss.

Solo and Small Biz Change Agent, Marie-Helene Sakowski at

What Highly Sensitive People Bring to Business

The characteristics of a Highly Sensitive Person (HSP) have been discussed and researched in depth over the past few decades.  Dr. Elaine Aron is the Psychologist who first identified the trait and pioneered the research of people who are HSP’s.

Based on Dr. Aron’s work HSP’s bring the following to business:

  1. Deep thinking – the ability to approach a situation from many perspectives and develop solutions to circumstances that are outside of the business norm.
  2. Capacity for trailblazing – they have a predisposition for innovation and seeing situations clearer and from varying perspectives.
  3. Attuned to details that are not visible to others, they see the voids and gaps that others overlook.
  4. Leadership ability that allows others to bring their best to the table avoiding the command and control scenarios found in many businesses.

Curious about other HSP traits?  Contact me to discuss.

Solo and Small Biz Change Agent, Marie-Helene Sakowski at


Company Culture – What is it?

There is a lot of discussion about company culture these days.  Often the articles focus on the success of giant multinational corporations and their seeming success in having great work place cultures.  On occasion there is focus on these same gigantic companies and their failures in having a functioning and articulated company culture.

Whether praising or decrying a company culture the proposed solutions focus on adapting what worked someplace else to your own workplace.  On the surface that may seem like a reasonable idea.  It is not.

Company culture is dependent on the people who are part of the workplace.  It may start out as an informal set of guidelines that employees at all levels align with it.  Or it may be a more formalized approach setting out the parameters for the tolerance of risk and out of the box thinking.

Your company may have an atmosphere of casual dress, a games room, onsite child care, or well stocked kitchens accessible to all employees at no cost.  These are not cultural features.

Culture is deeper – it is what has formed over time and is based on surviving downturns, upturns and everything in between.   Shared assumptions leading to shared values, and historic data along with people who are rooted in the experience of sharing that data, are company culture foundations.

What is your experience and perception of a finely tuned company culture that employees chose to be a part of?

Let me know – I am genuinely interested.

Need greater clarity – contact me to discuss.

Solo and Small Biz Change Agent, Marie-Helene Sakowski at

Measuring High Potential Employees

All business owners need to be concerned with developing their high potential employees.  The areas that require measurement and tracking are:

  1. Capacity

A key area to focus on for up and comers is self-awareness.  Of crucial importance is the presence of the ability to build relationships at all levels of the organization.  Quick thinking and the ability to learn and maintain information is also necessary.

  1. Experience

Growing as an individual is one thing.  Growing a team is highly valuable.  Beyond that putting in place plans for the development of a number of teams and departments becomes essential.  Having success in this final stage is mandatory for achieving high placement.

  1. Motivation

Desire for career success and attainment is basic to the success of a high potential employee.  People may have the talent and an enviable track record in terms of achievement.  The desire to be a top notch leader must be present for that person to move forward.

Each area is needed for the successful development of the high potential person or people within your business.


Need greater clarity – contact me to discuss.

Solo and Small Biz Change Agent, Marie-Helene Sakowski at


Why Introverts and Highly Sensitive People Are Needed Now

Not everyone in our culture is an alpha person.  For those of us who are introverted or highly sensitive that world is one that is foreign.  The natural tendencies for those who are not the alpha type are quite different from the “go get what you want and take charge” perspective that defines our culture.

Introverts and highly sensitive people are different and that is an important distinction.  Introverted people are on the quieter side.  Highly sensitive people may not be as quiet.  They do however share some of the same natural tendencies.

  1. The need for quiet time is one of them. Alone time to process information is important for both traits.
  2. The need or preference to work alone for part of the time. Again to process information and offer solutions beyond what is typical or expected.
  3. Having deep and meaningful discussions with colleagues or friends on a one-to-one basis. Group and large meetings have their place and both traits are able to deliver in large groups.  The one-to-one dynamic is needed to build quality business interactions that are based on trust.

At this time workplaces and the overall culture of “go get what you want and take charge” is under question.  The overall volatility of the workplace and life in general is demanding a review of values and mores that have been help as the only way forward until recently.  Introverts and highly sensitive people are demonstrating that another way of doing business and being in the world is possible.  And at this time in history those other ways are a necessity.

What other traits do you value in highly sensitive and introverted people?

Need greater clarity – contact me to discuss.

Solo and Small Biz Change Agent, Marie-Helene Sakowski at

Soft Skills from a Liberal Arts Perspective

It turns out that people with an Arts degree may have the right type of soft skills to succeed in areas that are uncertain and murky.  That being the case – here are the soft skills that people with a Liberal Arts education tend to have:

  1. Being curious and willing to try new things.

It is speculated about 70 % of working people want to be told what to do and do that over and over again.  Enter the need for curiosity, and the ability to make up the rules as you along, a strong characteristic of Arts grads.

  1. Decoding or analytic skills.

Unpacking systems and processes are what Arts graduates are generally better at than others.  Using critical thinking skills developed during the degree courses is invaluable in terms of putting all of the puzzle pieces together into a logical framework.  It is also valuable when it comes to unearthing details overlooked by others.

  1. Reading people and communicating.

Having empathy and being able to see people as they are is a skill that Arts graduates have in spades.  Focusing on what others want and need and then being able to communicate that clearly is hugely beneficial.


Need greater clarity – contact me to discuss.

Solo and Small Biz Change Agent, Marie-Helene Sakowski at


Habits are Necessary for Success

A productivity expert James Clear the author of “Transform your Habits” has an interesting take on success.  While the idea is not new he does put his own spin on forming new habits.  And the value those habits have in bringing about success.

An aspect of forming a habit that resonates with me and others that I know is to continue to do something daily.  A daily practice of writing for example takes hold and it becomes part of your system or routine.

Once a routine of writing is established it actually acts a motivator.  Tracking your progress on a calendar with an X for everyday that you do it is an incentive to keep on.  Having the visual provides the impetus to move forward.

The notion here is to keep going even when you make a mistake or when a day is missed.  Success comes from getting back at it and sticking to it.  The motto for keeping at can be summed up as “do not miss twice”. A consistent commitment will ensure that the body of work you want to accomplish will occur.

How are you at “not missing twice”?

Need greater clarity – contact me to discuss.

Solo and Small Biz Change Agent, Marie-Helene Sakowski at