Don't just follow, lead (Photo: Michel Gounot / Godong)How often are you frustrated by the pace of change? Do you have loads of great ideas that you believe will turn your strong organisation into an exceptional organisation? How are you going about securing the support? Do you know how to build a compelling business case? Can you sell change as a positive?Irrespective of your company structure and whether you are part of a traditional hierarchical team or fit somewhere within a complex matrix of competing priorities and interests, there are several guiding principles to getting your ideas aired, considered and implemented so that change can take root. Skip any of these crucial steps and you may as well be shouting into a gale force wind for all the good it will do you. Get it right and you will be seen as one of the organisation’s natural leaders.The following three suggestions will help you get ideas accepted and increase the pace of change in your organisation.The strongest ideas, those that achieve the fastest take up and which gain real support to drive change, are those that are clearly going to solve a problem and deliver a solution. Resist the temptation to immediately head blue-skywards with “Wouldn’t it be great if…?” So, for example, if you are (or fear) losing competitive edge and need to crack open a new market or launch a new product think first what your ideas will do for others. Understand the decision makers‘ fears and concerns and tailor your initiative to deliver something meaningful.Be prepared. Be prepared. Be prepared. Sorry, just in case you didn’t get that. Be prepared. This isn’t about getting high off the adrenalin rush of your great ideas. It is all about building that compelling business case and calmly painting a picture of the value of the ideas to the business, how they help meet business goals and the risk of inaction. It can be extremely annoying when someone you trust to grow a business let’s their heart rule their head and who fails to understand those around them or to listen. The decision makers, be they your peers or your senior management, want to see you have carefully structured your arguments, and that you have considered the opportunity from both the positive and negative.But having a great business case is still only part of the battle, you also need to be able to clearly and succinctly communicate what you are going to achieve. Spreadsheets have their place, but try to think of engaging ways to present the business case through diagrams and graphics. A great image will stick in the mind when it is associated with a great idea.So you’ve successfully had your business case accepted, you’ve been given the green light, what next? Your business case is only the beginning, it is a guide. Think of it as a sketch map that sets out the rough route to the goal but which doesn’t accurately portray roads and paths or the topography of the landscape.You need to engage across the organisation to build support and trust, and crucially to tap into the expertise you need to deliver against your great idea. This isn’t just about being able to deliver against your ideas, but it is about keeping those ideas as part of the conversation within the organisation. Don’t, whatever you do, let the ideas slip from view. Communicate little and often, keep the focus on progress, devise and follow the project plan and make sure you deliver whatever has been promised.