Home » Change Management » Making it naturally difficult to go back

The advent of the fiduciary rule led the industry to make changes that may not be reversed, according to Aron Szapiro, Morningstar Inc.’s director for policy research. After the Labor Department’s announcement in 2016, financial companies began moving to comply with it. Bank of America Corp.’s Merrill Lynch stopped offering many commission-based retirement accounts in favor of ones that charge fees. “At the very least, from a PR standpoint, it would be difficult to go back to the old ways of doing business,” says Brian Gardner, an analyst at Keefe, Bruyette & Woods Inc. “It just looks bad.” Bloomberg Businessweek June 11, 2018. Who’s looking out for you? Photo by Mantas Hesthaven on Unsplash

I love things that work without needing a library of rules to learn and an army of bureaucrats to interpret and enforce.

It is like any discipline I’ve tried to adopt. I start out with a goal and maybe a checklist. I do the habit regularly that supports the rule until it becomes just part of what I do. I then remove the goal and the checklist because I do the habit regularly, it has become part of who I am, and I don’t need the clutter of the rule or the checklist anymore.

I’m not sure this would work as well in a project or organizational environment. I have observed that many teams will regress to doing things the previous ways, even when they were not good ways, without something to periodically reinforce the updated approach. I do like the notion that a good habit can be optimized by first having and actively enforcing a rule but then later no longer needing dedicated staff and resources for that rule because the culture reinforces it naturally.

What are you doing to ensure your improvements continue on in your future projects?

Thank you for sharing!

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