Become Change Capable – Erika Andersen

“Change capable probably is the single most important thing that each of us have to do now to be able to thrive in this new era of nonstop change.” Erika Andersen

Over the past two years— as we’ve battled a changing pandemic, hastily reinvented our businesses, and grudgingly reshaped our personal lives—who hasn’t thought, “When can we get back to normal?” says our guest today, Erika Andersen. However, according to Erika, our days will be much less stressful if we stopped viewing these changes as difficult, costly, and weird, and instead embraced them as doable, rewarding, and normal.

ERIKA ANDERSEN is the founding partner of Proteus International, a coaching, consulting, and training firm that focuses on leader readiness. For over three decades, she’s served as a consultant and advisor to top executives at today’s leading organizations, including Amazon, Spotify, Charter/Spectrum, and the Yale School of Public Health. She’s the author of four bestselling books, including Growing Great Employees and Be Bad First; is a popular leadership blogger at; and is the host of The Proteus Leader Show, a business and leadership podcast globally ranked in the top 10%. Her newest book is Change from the Inside Out: Making You, Your Team, and Your Organization Change-Capable (Berrett-Koehler Publishers; October 26, 2021).

In today’s episode, Erika shares how we can rewire our relationship with change and become more change capable. She also sheds some light on some simple ways to managing change faster, easier, and less painful.

Listen in!



Twitter: @erikaandersen 


  • I started Proteus International in 1990 that was focused on coaching and training skills that would enable companies to be successful. [3:22]
  • The mission was and still is to help our clients clarify and move toward their hope for a future and that’s what we’ve been trying to do for the last 30 plus years. [4:59]
  • When I write a book, it’s because I’ve gotten curious about something, and I want to crack some kind of a code that I think will be helpful to people. [8:14]
  • When I started thinking in 2018, about writing book about change, there was some codes that I wanted to crack. [8:32]
  • I had two questions that I thought if I can find answers to, will make our change practice much more effective. [8:53]
  • I started to think about change relative to our history as human beings and we have handled change over the years. [9:52]
  • We really need to rewire ourselves so that we can become change capable. [12:16]
  • I did a lot of observation and thinking and research and came up with the change arc. [12:43]
  • Next, I noticed that when people are starting to gather this information, we start with a mindset that the change that’s coming is going to be difficult, costly, and weird. [14:20]
  • I kept observing and I noticed that people shifted their mindset to thinking that the change could be easy, rewarding, and normal. [15:40]
  • We noticed that it’s only when a critical mass of people are thinking that the change could be easy, rewarding and normal, that they start being willing to actually adopt the change. [17:11]
  • This was so exciting because this is movable and you can help people through that arc when you know what it is. [17:25]
  • It was so helpful to us to have this arc in our own company because were able to pivot really quickly to doing everything we do virtually after the pandemic hit. [19:53]
  • Change capable probably is the single most important thing that each of us have to do now to be able to thrive in this new era of nonstop change. [20:45]
  • When we teach people about the change arc, it allows them to comment any change neutrally. [21:36]
  • We have a five-step model, which we use in helping people do organizational change, and aligns with this change Ark. [23:17]
  • Our five-step model is a great way to make sure you’re doing things that you need to do to make a change, and at the same time cascading people through their change arc. [23:25]
  • Commercial Break. [24:35]
  • One of the things that I know is true for me is that I have to do it first myself. [27:56]
  • As entrepreneurs, we are often in the position of having to help someone see something. [28:41]
  • I can’t really help somebody see something until I see it very clearly myself, and then I can explain it in a way that’s simple and compelling and meaningful. [28:57]
  • Authenticity is at the core of why as leaders we have to do it first ourselves. [30:57]
  • The silver lining of the pandemic is that we all know that we are more capable of change than we ever thought we were two years ago. [35:26]
  • We are all capable of making the changes we need to make, to create the life that we truly want to have. [35:42]


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