Killing old habits

Change only happens, when you actively do something other than what you usually do.


As a public development unit, it is part of our job to stay on our toes and challenge our workflows. But in a workday with full inboxes and booked meeting calendars, inspiration and perspectives do not always appear by themselves. Therefore, we are trying to plan ourselves out of the conspicuous grip of conformity.

Among other things, we set aside time every three weeks to create a learning forum for each other. Here, we take turns to fill two hours with everything between heaven and earth, which we professionally can teach, inspire and preferably provoke each other with.

Radical need for change calls for radical methods

But we have to see ourselves overtaken by the Red Cross Youth. In the beginning of summer the MindLab team visited the organization’s director, Anders Buhelt, who explained how the organization has taken drastic methods in use, to reinvent and rediscover its relevance and function. For three months, all of the almost 50 employees in the secretariat were banned from responding to emails, answering the phone and other ways of taking care of their work as usual. Instead, they were tasked with solving a number of challenges and cases through SPRINT-based methods. It led them far around; From field work in the outskirts of Denmark to hairdressing school in a socially challenged area of Copenhagen to intense discussion with decision makers.

The closing of the secretariat was not an impulse turned into hurried arrogance, but an acknowledgment of, that change does not happen just because you want it. For a long time, the organization had the experience of drowning in internal bureaucracy, rigid logics and workflows, and lack of radicality in their development. In acknowledging that radical development requires a radical break with status quo, the executive board and the board of directors jointly chose to re-launch the entire organization.

At MindLab, we look forward to following the Red Cross Youth from the sidelines and seeing the effects of the great cultural change they are undergoing right now. And while we are not going to do a similar thing by sending Slotsholmen in time out, we became inspired to be more courageous and more radical in our choice of methods. -when the case and the project call for radicality, it should be added.