There's an assessment for that?

If you dabble in the HR or Leadership Development world, or even if you don’t, you are likely aware that there are a myriad of different assessments that can be leveraged to assist in raising awareness of strengths and weaknesses in almost any area. From 360 to DiSC to StrengthsFinder to Emotional Intelligence (EQ), our industry is replete with assessment opportunity.

For years, those of us in the change space have been asking the same question – “Wouldn’t it be great if we could measure our Change Intelligence?” Well, thanks to Dr. Barbara Trautlein, founder of Change Catalysts and author of Change Intelligence, we can!

I was introduced to Dr. Trautlein and her work during a webinar on the topic of Change Intelligence. I was fascinated with this concept and found a need for it in my work. I read Change Intelligence, took my own assessment and signed up to become CQ Certified! Upon receiving my certification, I set out to implement this concept with my internal client group whose goal it was to spend time investing in themselves as individuals and as a leadership team.

Change Intelligence (CQ) is defined as the awareness of one's own Change Leadership Style, and the ability to adapt one's style to be optimally effective in leading change across a variety of people and situations.

Dr. Trautlein based the CQ System for Developing Change Intelligent Individuals and Organizations on decades of partnering with clients, ranging from steel mills to healthcare systems to retail outlets on how to lead change; years of conducting global research on managing change; and deep study related to the neuroscience of change.

We each have our own unique Change Leadership Style. Our style is comprised of our tendencies to lead with our heart versus our head versus our hands. The most effective Change Leaders “start with the heart,” “engage the brain,” and “help the hands” move from current state to future state.

Change Leaders who lead with the heart are very engaging, caring and people oriented. Change Leaders who lead from the head are strategic, futuristic and purpose oriented. Finally, Change Leaders who lead with the hands are efficient, tactical and process oriented. All amazing qualities!

The most powerful Change Leaders have all three tools (Head, Heart, Hands) in their tool bag, skill in using the tools, and the savvy to deploy the right tools in the right situation. And that is CQ!  

Now, none of us leads in every instance with the head or heart or hands. We are each a blend of all three. It is this unique combination that represents our Change Leader Style. There are seven possible styles, depending on how strong you are on Head, Heart and Hands.

The workshop I developed included an explanation of the concept of CQ, a deep dive into the Change Leadership Styles, a review of the team’s CQ assessment results and a group plotting on the Head, Heart, Hands triangle. This particular leadership team had just taken a leadership assessment as well and what happened next was amazing!

They began to organically weave their Leadership Styles to their Change Leadership Styles! For example, one leader was a “Pacesetting” leader. What Change Style do you think she was?   That’s right – her CQ Style was a “Driver.” In light of these connections and realizations, we spent time discussing how each one of them could support and coach each other through leading change based on their CQ strengths and Leadership styles. At the end of this session, this team stacked hands and agreed to incorporate CQ as a standing agenda topic during their team meetings to continue to build strength and allow for peer to peer coaching time.

To learn more about your own Change Leadership Style, you can take the CQ/Change Intelligence Assessment available in the book, Change Intelligence. You can also learn much more about CQ/Change Intelligence and your Change Leader style by becoming CQ certified by Dr. Trautlein herself. The CQ Certification Course is an ACMP recognized QEP. That’s right! You can earn credits toward your CCMP and become CQ certified at the same time! Check out certification opportunities at www.changecatalysts.comYou’ll be glad you did.

Authored by: Kellie Scutt, ACMP NE board member

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  1. Barbara Trautlein

    Sep. 19, 2019

    Thanks so much for sharing this information about the Change Intelligence/CQ Assessment! If anyone would like more information or to schedule a time to talk about the assessment, the CQ Certification Program, or any aspect of the CQ System to Develop Change Intelligence, please reach out to me - [email protected]!


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