How the Health Promotion Board nailed its new healthy regimen through smart change management

Have you seen the Health Promotion Board’s new “food pyramid”? For one, it is not a pyramid, but a plate. For another, it has made it so much clearer for the average person to understand just what, and how much, is needed in each meal. Take a look:

This is a great example of how to provide instructions to make change happen. Take note of the following:

1. Exact proportions

In the old food pyramid, we see a triangle, which contains various different food types in different levels. The problem with that was it did not recommend how much of what to eat, in relation with the other. There were also four levels in all, with each level containing so many varieties of food, making it a complicated affair to eat healthy. And so people don’t. In this new variant, there are only three types of food, with the proportion clearly indicated. A very easy tool.

2. Scripting critical moves

Notice the language used – choose water. It did not say avoid alcohol, drink juice, have more vitamin C etc. It just said, “choose water”. This is called scripting critical moves, and it makes it clear what the minimum, uncomplicated activity is required to stay healthy. When you are planning a change initiative, don’t complicate the issue by saying many different things, just focus on the key ones, and script that move.

3. Less is more

When you take in all the critical moves – choose water, use healthier oils, be active – you will realize that it encompasses a holistic health plan, with three simple instructions. Less is certainly more when it comes to making change work. After all, you don’t want people to second-guess the process, and cut corners. With only three easy instructions anyone can change and be more healthy!

Change is difficult because many people think it is a tall order to overcome the status quo and adopt new behaviours. Take a leaf out of the HPB’s Healthy Plate and construct your very own simple process. You will amaze yourself at the efficacy of change!

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