Technical vs. Adaptive Challenges

Immunity to Change: Post #2 — Getting Started

Too often when we think about change, we go for the easy – a technical challenge. The challenge with the most impact, however, will be the adaptive one – “a change you make in yourself that leads to real change and growth.”

Kinds of challenges – Technical vs. Adaptive (Heifetz,1994; Argyris & Schon, 1974)

  • Technical – The skill set needed to address the challenge is known – well practiced and proven. Technical challenges are still important and in need of address. (i.e. fixing a flat tire)
  • Adaptive – The problem is not clearly defined and the solution is not readily available. The challenge can be addressed only by changing mindset. (i.e. losing weight)

The link above outlines a process involving others in helping develop your adaptive challenge.

After reading the post linked above and dug up a conversation I developed for EduCon 2.3 that included the ideas of technical and adaptive challenges and the required shifts in mindset.


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