Brandenburg Gate in Berlin Reopens.
"Transformational change is the result of persistent efforts and incremental progress, gradually building the necessary conditions until a tipping point is reached"
👏 Happy Friday!
On this day, December 22, 1989, the Brandenburg Gate in Berlin was reopened, signifying the reunification of East and West Germany. German Chancellor, Helmut Kohl, Berlin’s Mayor, Walter Momper, and thousands of people gathered to witness this historic moment as they watched the barriers being removed. This event marked the end of the division that had endured for nearly three decades, symbolising the triumph of unity over separation. In the aftermath of World War II, Germany found itself divided into East and West, each influenced by different political ideologies. The Brandenburg Gate, a once-unified landmark, became an iconic symbol of the Cold War division, standing at the heart of a divided Berlin. However, on this momentous day in 1989, the gate ceased to be a mere physical structure; it became a living testament to the power of change and the resilience of the human spirit. The reopening of the Brandenburg Gate held profound significance, as it represented more than just the physical reunification of East and West Germany. It symbolised a momentous occasion of unity for a nation that had long been divided. This historic event laid the groundwork for the formal reunification of Germany on October 3, 1990, a moment when the country would rise above decades of separation and emerge as a stronger, more united Germany.
✅ West German Chancellor Helmut Kohl walked through the gate to be greeted by Hans Modrow, the East German Prime Minister. Hans Modrow made an impassioned speech before an audience of millions, broadcast live on television to East and West Germans. “The burning stench of war must never be smelled here. It must be a gate of peace.” Cheers of “Helmut!”, “Helmut!” drowned out his words. Helmut Kohl responded to the people by declaring it the “most important moment of my life.” Though global superpowers dictated circumstances in post-war Germany, ordinary citizens banded together out of a common dream for freedom and national unity. The fall of the Berlin Wall and the reopening of the Brandenburg Gate teach us that sweeping change can happen when the hunger for freedom reaches a tipping point. Though for decades that 4-metre-high, 155-kilometre wall stood dauntingly immutable, the human spirit proved indomitable. Citizens banded together, voicing their defiance and resolve for a better way of life. Similarly, change leaders must guide people through an orchestrated path of small wins to build momentum without burnout. With each success, confidence grows to take on greater challenges. Create the Change Tipping Point.
“Transformational change is the result of persistent efforts and incremental progress, gradually building the necessary conditions until a tipping point is reached”
👉 A typical question asked by the organisation’s C-Suite and leadership team is, “How long will the change take before we start to see the benefits?” The project change plan and the benefits tracking plan, if accurate and up-to-date, should provide a very good indication. The next question is usually, “Is there anything else we could be doing to speed up adoption and benefit delivery?” If all the a2BCMF® steps are being adhered to, then the simple answer is, “Yes, by reducing or removing resistance to the change.” The best way of doing this is to work with the three groups (‘Advocates’, ‘Observers’ and ‘REBELS’) involved in the change with the support of the change agents to find the ‘Tipping Point’.
Have a fantastic weekend with the ones you love and care for, enjoy some fresh air, exercise, eat, drink and be happy.
Further Reading: Change Management Handbook - Leadership of Change Volume 3
Peter consults, speaks, and writes on the Leadership of Change®.
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Peter F Gallagher is a Change Management Global Thought Leader, Guru, Expert, International Speaker, Author and Leadership Alignment Coach.
Listed #1 by leadersHum Top 40 Change Management Gurus You Should Follow in 2022 (Mar 2022).
Ranked #1 Change Management Global Thought Leader: Top 50 Global Thought Leaders and Influencers on Change Management (2023-2022-2021-2020) by Thinkers360.
Ranked #1 Business Strategy Global Thought Leader: Top 50 Global Thought Leaders and Influencers on Business Strategy (2022) by Thinkers360.
Ranked #2 Leadership Global Thought Leader: Top 50 Global Thought Leaders and Influencers on Leadership (Aug 2020) by Thinkers360.
Business Book Ranking
Change Management Behaviour - Leadership of Change® Volume 6, listed among the 50 Books from Thinkers360 Thought Leaders to read in 2022.
Change Management Adoption - Leadership of Change® Volume 5, listed among year-to-date’s (Jul 2021) most popular books on business and technology from Thinkers360 member thought leaders.
Change Management Handbook - Leadership of Change® Volume 3, listed among the 50 Business and Technology Books from Thinkers360 Thought Leaders to read in 2021.
Change Management Pocket Guide - Leadership of Change® Volume 2, ranked within the top 50 Business and Technology Books (Jan 2020) from Thinkers360 Thought Leaders.