Managing Director, Adizes Institute Australia
Don McKenzie is the Managing Director of the Adizes Institute Australia and uses his diverse experience, combined with the world recognised Adizes Methodology, to deliver transformation programs, workshops and in company seminars for all sizes and types of businesses, across Australia.
Don is an experienced executive and has built businesses both organically and by acquisition in different parts of the world. He led an Australian company to list on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX), and was the youngest Managing Director of an ASX listed business at that time.
Don is involved with the Queensland Government Mentoring for Growth program, which offers businesses a panel mentoring experience with leaders in various fields providing mentoring and guidance on a volunteer basis. He also provides mentoring and guidance for investment groups. Don found Adizes during his journey as a private and then public company Managing Director and CEO. He now uses the methodology, coupled with his experience from owning small and large businesses, to help other businesses get to Prime. He uses his successes and failures as a business owner to help other owners and executives.
Dr. Adizes speaks about his life mission and how the Adizes Institute helps organisations around the world.
The Core Values That Guide Our Work
Adizes enables ordinary people to transform the management of their organizations and produce extraordinary, sustainable results. Our work with all clients is guided by a strong belief in these values:
Mutual Trust & Respect
We believe that a strong and pervasive culture of mutual trust and mutal respect is what makes a business strong and allows it to become a dominant competitor over the long term. This kind of culture is what underlies the ability to consistently WOW customers, attract and retain exceptional talent, and generate superior financial returns. The reason is simple; when employees really know how to work well together and harness their conflicts constructively, minimal energy is wasted on infighting and internal politics, which allows them to devote maximum energy to competing in the marketplace. This kind of culture is an organization’s greatest asset. It is what customers are really buying, and the competitive advantage that is the most difficult to copy.
We believe that in every organization, in every market, in every country of the world, coping with a high rate of change in a complex and uncertain world is leadership’s #1 challenge. The ability to change faster, better and more economically than competitors is therefore the leading predictor of any organization’s long term success. Developing this capability to change is something best done “with” not “to” an organization. Trying to change people is hard. Instead, we focus on changing the environment; which unleashes the talents and productivity of people.
We believe that meaningful change necessarily creates conflict. Harnessing conflict constructively creates the nuclear energy that drives superior performance.
Being Customer Driven
We believe that the primary purpose of every organization is to WOW customers profitably and deliver compelling value to them. Some organizations believe that making money is their primary purpose, which is a confusion of ends and means.
We believe that none of us is as smart as all of us. Close-knit complementary teams who work well together are the ultimate competitive weapon.
We believe that the purpose of teamwork is to help leaders make better decisions than they would on their own.Management-by-committee or consensus decision making is not how decisions are made in high-performing organizations.
Transformation may not be easy, but we believe it must be simple. If people don’t understand something, they can’t implement it.
We believe that superior long term performance is realized by tying the achievement of results to shared monetary and non-monetary rewards.
By practicing these values, Adizes enables ordinary people to change the culture of their organization and produce extraordinary and sustainable results.
The history of Adizes dates back to the spring of 1966, when a young Ichak Adizes, as part of his doctoral dissertation, studied the Yugoslav industrial democracy-management system. This democratic approach to management stood in stark contrast to the top down management approach used in the United States, and it was by studying these two approaches and evaluating their relative strengths and weaknesses that the Adizes® Methodology was first conceived.
In 1971, the book Industrial Democracy: Yugoslav Style was published to much acclaim. The book was immediately translated into many languages establishing Dr. Adizes as an expert on the subject of the democratization of organizations, a subject he was invited to speak on at events around the world. That same year Dr. Adizes established the MDOR (Management Development and Organizational Research) Institute where he worked with clients as a consultant. It was at this stage that the application of the Adizes® Methodology was first tested and refined.
By 1979, the name MDOR Institute had been changed to the Adizes Institute and Dr. Adizes had already published his second and third books, Self Management – New Dimensions to Democracy and How to Solve the Mismanagement Crisis, respectively. With increased demands for Dr. Adizes’ consulting services, he resigned his tenure at UCLA Graduate School of Management so that he could dedicate more of his time to developing and documenting the Adizes® Methodology.
Dr. Adizes first started training and certifying others in the Adizes® Methodology as far back as 1977. Since then hundreds of individuals have been trained and certified in the Adizes® Methodology establishing thriving offices around the world.
Over the past few decades the Adizes Institute has emerged from a one-man operation into a multinational service organization. Dr. Adizes has written 20 books that have been translated into 26 languages, and he has been awarded 17 honorary doctorates.
Unlike traditional management consultants who provide answers, Adizes provides powerful concepts, methods and tools so that CEOs and their management teams can figure things out for themselves. We know from over 40 years working with clients in 73 countries, that range from the Global 100 to middle market companies, start-ups, and governments, that the solutions our clients develop with Adizes get implemented, while the brilliant insights from traditional consultants often sit on shelves and gather dust.
The Adizes Institute respects the privacy of our customers. Among the clients who gave their permission to publish their names.
“I’ve been using the Adizes method for over 40 years. It has been instrumental in our being able to grow our business during that time from about $50 million per year to over $4 billion. The lessons of balanced management recognizing all the disciplines necessary in every organization, regardless of size, have been a driving force in our success.”
“Our leaders have appreciated the Adizes coaching that came with no hidden agenda, and which was always looking out for the well-being of the entire Focus on the Family organization.”
“Adizes is the best kept secret in America. Discover it! The sooner you do, the better off you’ll be.”
“Dr. Adizes’ insights cut straight to the heart of what it means to effectively lead and manage others.”
“The Adizes approach is the most effective tool that I’ve encountered for building strong leadership teams and getting results.”
“The Adizes Methodology is profound in its simplicity. It has made me a better manager.”
“Just about everything I know about managing and leading an organization I learned from two men: Peter Drucker and Ichak Adizes.”