How to Facilitate Change Within a Company Using Conation  

Conation informs us about people’s instinct to act. It provides valuable insight into the needs of each person to facilitate their actions towards the desired situation.  

It would be wise to start by clarifying some of the notions required to go in depth into this subject: 

  • The three parts of the mind;  
  • The natural reaction to change;  
  • The effect of perceptions. 

The three parts of the mind 

There are three parts of the mind and only two of them are well known and used: 

  • Affective (feeling): motivation, desires, preferences, emotions, values;   
  • Cognitive (thinking): ability, reason, knowledge, experience, education, behaviors;   
  • Conative (doing): drive, necessity, mental energy, innate strength, talents. 

Affective and cognitive aspects are often analyzed by companies. Several psychometric tests are known and used to determine personality, preferences, skills and behaviors. However, the only psychometric test that measures conation is little known and little used by companies.   

To learn more about conation and the Kolbe Index, consult the Kolbe Essentials.   

Naturel reaction to change 

Did you know that we all have a natural reaction to change? Most of the time, when a change occurs in our lives, learning is involved. Research on learning has shown that we have a physical reaction to change. It is mainly related to our brain.  

Have you noticed how children are not aware of or anticipate danger? Before the brain matures, the child learns and integrates many ways of doing things. Activities done without thinking become automatic. 

When our brain reaches maturity, its main role is to keep us alive. It is like a “control tower”: from regulating body temperature to anticipating danger. That’s why, as we grew up, we learned and automated what we needed to do. For example, you can multitask without thinking about it, such as making breakfast and lunches for the kids while talking on the phone. 

It is important for all members of the company to understand this reality and to put in place personal strategies to help themselves. A free training on this subject is available on our AVTransformation platform: The key to change C me. Simply sign up for the 14-day free trial. 

The effect of perceptions 

Perception differs from one individual to another, mainly because of differences in culture, age, gender, values, beliefs and personal history.    

For a given event or subject, the perception will be different for the people present. Here is a simple exercise to do as a group. Take a piece of paper and write down what you think a luxury home would cost. Simple, isn’t it? Then share your answer with the people who did the same exercise. Do you have the same answers? Probably not. That’s normal, everyone is unique and so is their perception. 

Perception will lead to emotions. For example: fear, if there is danger ahead, confidence, if there is a great adventure ahead. It is therefore important to discuss the change with people and ask them what they think and feel about what is coming. Knowing what people are thinking and taking that into account will make the change easier for everyone. Perception management is a strategy that will reduce resistance and accelerate change. Preparing communications that will generate positive emotions is the way to go! 

Using conation to better accompany people 

Conation measures the instinct to act and explains our modus operandi or mode of action. If a person stays in this mode, their energy will be optimized. If they deviate from it, they will be tired, stressed and out of their comfort zone. This knowledge and integration of the three parts of the mind in human management makes it possible to facilitate the professional life of each person.   

It will be easier to develop and adapt one’s management approach to the needs of the people if one understands how all team members operate. The KolbeTM Index is the only psychometric test in the world that measures conation.     

Here are a few examples of valuable information that allow us to better accompany people in their evolution while using their talents. 

People who “specify” in their instinct to investigate will need detailed information such as: objectives, priorities, accurate definition of new terms, access to case studies or historical evidence, etc. They will want to see written material and, until they have answers to their questions, it will be difficult to move forward.

People who “adapt” in their instinct to organize will be flexible, finding ways around problems and even creating shortcuts. They will need to be part of the evaluation team for new solutions because they will be the first to point out inconsistencies and unnecessary steps. This is both a great help and a way to help them evolve quickly. 

People who “stabilize” in their instinct to improvise will want to protect what works well. They will need to analyze risks to reduce surprises, clarify timelines, limit options to ensure a smooth transition. They are an asset in mitigating risk and bringing wisdom to approaches.  

People who “demonstrate” in their building instincts are sensitive to the non-verbal and prefer face-to-face. Therefore, meetings to discuss are preferable to emails or phone calls. They will need to participate in demonstrations, model making or prototypes. 

This quick overview of the information provided by the conation demonstrates, beyond any doubt, that it is an important part of the mind to consider in today’s management. In a society in perpetual motion where everything is fast, everything is urgent and everything has a cost, the challenges are great. Conation brings a concrete solution to evolve rapidly by making the workplace human by aligning people, maximizing talents and optimizing productivity. 

The index helps to capitalize on the power of instinctive strengths by understanding how people function and what their talents are, as well as identifying the potential for conflict between people and getting advice on how to avoid it. It also helps to maximize teamwork by strategically combining talents.  

Imagine the potential of this index! It will allow you to make an inventory of the talents and predispositions within the teams. Once this is done, it will be easy to plan your initiatives taking into account the strengths of each person. It’s like going on an Everest expedition knowing exactly how each person will help in the project, how each person will act in real time and how to optimize everyone’s energy for an energizing experience. 

Using conation means optimizing strategic choices by taking into account the energy and predispositions of each individual. It is to ensure that the tasks will be easy for them, therefore, a greater chance of completion and productivity.  

This is an innovative approach, as it is not widely used in management methods in general. The focus is on preferences and knowledge. While an infinite number of possibilities are available to us by taking into account the conation, it is a new revolutionary avenue that must be taken into account now in order to increase the synergy in work teams. If everyone follows his or her instincts, it avoids frustration, fatigue, dissatisfaction and discouragement. The effort required is minimal and propels the person towards success.  

In conclusion, conation is the knowledge of the individual that one must have to be able to facilitate any change in a company. The human being is recognized as a whole and has his place in an energizing environment where he evolves in his uniqueness. 

Photo by Mao