Does Agreement Create Buy-in?

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Does Agreement Create Buy-in?

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If everyone agrees with the change effort are they also bought in?

business people group on meeting at modern bright office

Groups and organizations processing through a significant change are nearly as unique as a finger print. As organizations commit to pivoting to new or different technology, changing policy or procedures, or even a significant cultural shift they are definitely not a one size (or shape) fits all.

Groups of people and an organizational culture is something that is developed over time. It is based on collections of values and belief systems, and is closely connected with habits, traditions, and common outcomes.

If your team agrees on a significant change happening in your workplace, are they also bought in? Some might quickly say yes, but hold on for a minute, is agreement the same as buy-in?

Establishing Agreement

If your team or workplace is struggling with a problem it might be easy to build agreement that a change is necessary. In fact, many people will often feel that a change is overdue.

Whether they like change, or they do not, they might believe that it is the best or only course of action, and just because change is required it doesn’t mean that everyone will like it but they still may feel it is necessary.

Creating Buy-in

Creating buy-in is almost always more challenging than obtaining agreement. There are many things to consider when trying to create or improve buy-in for a particular change.

Buy-in is typically not something that you can snap your fingers and it is finished. You can’t just hold a team meeting, a staff meeting, or an all-company meeting and expect to achieve it.

Too often supervisors, managers, or even the CEO become convinced that people are bought-in for a change effort when in fact, they’ve only reached agreement that a change is required.

Get Both

Some believe it is a two-step process. First, you have to establish agreement that a change is necessary, and second you have to build or create the buy-in for a prescribed change.

Agreement on a change may lead to buy-in but never confuse the idea of agreement with meaning that people are also bought-in.

If you’re going to have a successful transition and truly achieve change, you should be sure to get both.


See also: Did You Create Buy-in? and 5 Tips to Create Buy-in for Change.

Dennis E. Gilbert is a business consultant, speaker (CSPTM), and corporate trainer that specializes in helping businesses and individuals accelerate their leadership, their team, and their success. He is a four-time author and some of his work includes, Forgotten Respect, Navigating A Multigenerational Workforce and Pivot and Accelerate, The Next Move Is Yours! Reach him through his website at or by calling +1 646.546.5553.

Dennis Gilbert on Google+

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