Strategies for change

Elephant and buddist monch in Thailand


Getting people involved in major change processes without using power.


The Switch change model offers 9 strategies to change human behavior without using power. How do you get your target group (team, department, organization, country) involved in the next step(s) in a change.



Dan Heath – You hear plenty of people complaining that people won’t change because they’re too lazy. Well, I’m here to stick up for the lazy people. In fact, I want to argue that what looks like laziness is actually exhaustion. The proof comes from a psychology study that is absolutely fascinating.

A commonly held belief is that human behavior is the result of rational decision-making based on available information. A closer look into the science of behavior reveals the powerful role our emotions play in our decision-making process. In this animated video, we look at the behavior change process using Jonathan Haidt’s analogy of an elephant, a rider, and a path.

To Work

  1. Place the dialogue worksheet on a table for the team members to sit around. In step 1 lay the manual for working with a worksheet. Make sure each team member has a marker.
  2. Read the manual working with a worksheet if you have not worked with a worksheet before.
  3. Go through the worksheet step by step, with the team members taking turns reading and facilitating a step.


Chip and Dan Heath describe the model of the elephant and the rider in their book Switch – Change When Change Is Hard.

You find more motivational techniques in our book Connective Teamwork (EN, NL). The book helps you set your team in motion with a practical 5-step plan and 20 teamwork techniques.

You can learn more about and practice this technique in our Connective Team Coach Training Course.

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