Employee Development Systems, Inc. Powerful Choices Program Cuts Through Confusion over Creating and Sustaining Behavioral Change in the Workplace

Share Article

A recent article published by the Journal of Economic Perspectives explored the complexity of establishing credible and lasting behavioral change. Employee Development Systems, Inc. has developed a program that bypasses the often confusing issue of creating lasting change in the workplace by helping employees establish awareness of their own behaviors, instilling the desire to change, supporting their efforts and reinforcing those changes on the job. Leaders who utilize this method can find solutions to the mystery of motivating their workforce, and developing lasting change. The concepts taught can be used in any setting, increasing returns for organizations that take advantage of the Powerful Choices®, program.

Employee Development Systems, Inc.

Since each situation may call for a different combination of external and internal motivators, leaders are at a loss. This program instills consistent motivation in employees, resulting in short- and long-term returns.

Incentivized Change Brings Mixed and Unsustainable Results

A recent article that appeared in the Journal of Economic Perspectives sheds light on the complexity of incentives used for behavior change. In some situations, external rewards (such as monetary rewards or promotions) tend to shape behavior. In other situations, fostering internal motivation trumps the short-term returns on external rewards. According to the authors,

“A considerable and growing body of evidence suggests that the effects of incentives depend on how they are designed, the form in which they are given (especially monetary or nonmonetary), how they interact with intrinsic motivations and social motivations, and what happens after they are withdrawn. Incentives do matter, but in various and sometimes unexpected ways.”

Since each situation may call for a different combination of external and internal motivators, leaders are at a loss, wondering what the solution is to developing a competent and motivated workforce. Instead of struggling over which kind of motivator to put in place for each situation, Employee Development Systems, Inc. has developed a program titled Powerful Choices®, which helps employees create their own awareness and desire for changing behaviors, helping them develop behaviors that contribute to superior performance.

Self Awareness Serves as a Gateway to Change
The first step to behavior change is becoming aware that we all choose behaviors that either increase or decrease our effectiveness. Participants in the Powerful Choices® program take part in a Personal Values Survey, which uncovers the driving behaviors that influence them at work. Some examples would be approval, achievement and loyalty. This is then linked back to their jobs.

Powerful Choices Process Critical to Creating Lasting Change
Following this process creates impactful change. It starts with awareness, and moves through to the critical step of habit integration.

  •     Awareness
  •     Desire
  •     Knowledge
  •     Practice
  •     Encouragement
  •     Habit Integration

o They formulate a foundation of understanding workplace practices, responsibility, and consequences to choices surrounding these concepts.
o They discover how they rationalize behaviors and how to stop those that create negative consequences. This concept involves “self-limiting thoughts” and counters to them.
o These activities show how our self-directed behavior is a necessity for change and ultimately increased effectiveness in our professional and personal lives.

Breakdown of Powerful Choices Program Results

Managers – First raising awareness that they can make choices in how they deal with co-workers that could be more effective for the relationship and performance. It encourages them to direct their behaviors for results that will be more successful for them, and uncovering rationalization for behaviors that they might have a right to exhibit, but have a greater responsibility not to exhibit. How their “drivers” tell the subordinates what they really value in behaviors. Gives them an understanding of how and why subordinates react to their behaviors.

General Contributors - They become self-aware of their actions and like managers must accept the responsibility for their choices. It reinforces the concept that “you can’t change others’ behaviors, only your own.” In the extreme, the process highlights the “victimization” or the “entitlement” mentality that can begin to cause employees to make poor choices. The skill building gives them the tools to act on more positive behaviors. The awareness and understanding of rights and responsibilities empowers them to accept the choices they have, or to make better choices for reaching personal and professional goals.

Readers who are interested in increasing personal effectiveness are encouraged to sign up for the custom twitter feed, @IPEffectiveness, that will give them practical tools they can use every week to improve effectiveness, in a professional and personal setting. For more information on the Powerful Choices program, contact sherm(at)edsiusa(dot)com.

About Employee Development Systems, Inc.

Employee Development Systems, Inc. is a Colorado-based professional development firm that was founded in 1979 and offers employee development, management development, leadership and professionalism courses and accompanying behavioral style assessments, surveys and other tools. Employee Development Systems, Inc. provides services worldwide to Fortune 500 clients as well as small to medium-sized businesses.

The organization’s mission is to enhance the interpersonal skills needed to perform at a more productive level, to develop a workforce that adapts to change, and is creative and innovative and to make the client organization the employer of choice. This is accomplished through establishing trust, building relationships and fostering behavioral change. Employee Development Systems, Inc. training and development initiatives address employee engagement, multiple generations in the workplace, and powerful, impactful change in the workplace.

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Sherman Updegraff
Visit website