Want social change to stick?

kerrygrace-2014 Inspire

I don’t know about you but I’m sick of it

Sick of what you might ask?

I’ll be frank.

I’m SICK and TIRED of is all of the child like behaviour that goes on around social change.

There’s the services (not all, but some) that want to own it all (and the funding that goes with it).

Then there are the do-ers of good that obsess over saving people rather than enabling them to change by themselves, and then…

The in-fighting that goes on behind the scenes among the people who are working within our most vulnerable communities. The argy-bargy that goes on between funder and fundee, turf wars, lack of cohesiveness, white anting, black listing…  Yes, it happens.

Layer upon these things all of the money that is poured into thinking and planning about solutions that never, ever end in action.

And the problems continue, kids grow up in situations that they should never experience.

I’m sick of it.

Are you too?

I am personally a passionate advocate of social change and right now I’m actually rather miffed that I’ve invested so much  of my life into creating this change and supporting others that do the same kind of work, and yet people are still living in poverty.

I’m horrified that there are kids out there that will spend their entire adult lives dealing with the trauma they are experiencing right now and devastated that there are so many people that have so much to give our communities but for whatever reason they are completely and utterly isolated and left to die alone.

I for one don’t want to be someone that shuffles bits of paper around my desk hoping that I articulate an idea, come up with a strategy or plan that will ignite change.

So, rather than continuing to write plans that aren’t directly attached to action I’ve decided to invest my energy into opportunities that share the tools that people need to drive sustainable and authentic change.

The reality is there will always be some degree of problems in any community – but the other side of this reality is that if people really and truly knew how to lead by what matters to them, to create the life that they care about many of these issues wouldn’t even exist.  We could start making change that does stick.

And how do we create change that sticks?

It’s easier than we may think and it starts with the following changemakers guide:

  1. Ask people what they actually want to change
  2. Share skills and wait around until they are embedded
  3. Lead gently from behind – not like a storm trooper up front
  4. Look for ways to work with what already exists and only create new when it’s absolutely necessary
  5. Always, always be conscious of how things will run when you leave the table – are you leaving information, connections and skills behind so the show can run without you?


Kerry Grace is the Founder and Director of Evolve Group Network.

Kerry’s current employment is as the Director of Regional Development of Regional Development Australia – Mid North Coast and Norfolk Island.

Kerry’s work as a consultant, coach and educator spans both corporate and community sectors. She is a strong advocate of mums in business leadership positions and is a mum to three school aged children.

Kerry is a passionate regional Australian. Her work strives to inspire people to lead the life that matters most, by their own definition. www.kerrygrace.com.au