Making A Play for Change


Consultant Andy Stefanovich not only talks a mile a minute, but he’s a non-stop ball of action when it’s his turn on stage. He recently took a turn on stage – and turned on his strategic charm – as part of Richmond C3 (Creative Change Center) Breakfast Break, a monthly conversation with local change agents and creatives.

Stefanovich, who co-founded the rule-breaking and highly successful consultancy PLAY two decades ago, spoke to a group of more than 100 on the top floor of his firm’s old Richmond headquarters in Shockoe Bottom. Coincidentally, the space was home to C3 during that organization’s early years.

PLAY has since been acquired by San Francisco-based Prophet, and Stefanovich now finds himself roaming the world doing client work, and thinking about big ideas. He’s set to publish a book on some of those ideas this spring, and talked about a few of them at the C3 event.

“There’s a really interesting thing going on in the world today called a Wicked Business Challenge,” he started off.

“What’s a Wicked Business Challenge? A couple of criteria make up a WBC,” he continued. “It’s a leadership moment for someone. Someone will seize the moment. It will not go undone. And you will find yourself talking about it with friends and family over dinner. These challenges will show up in your dreams.”

“We are in the middle of a human energy crisis,” Stefanovich continued. “We are not as filled up and energized as we’d like to be right now. The world wants to be personally and professionally inspired.”

“Gen Yers are asking for meaning. They’re asking our generation, ‘Please give us meaning, help us find meaning.’”

He went on to talk about the 5 M’s – two of which are Mood and Mindset.

Mood, Stefanovich says, is one of those things that helps us create. Mood is purposeful disruption. Mood, he says, is cultural.

Mindset, on the other, is very personal. “Do your people have the mindset to do great things?” he asks. “Which of our barriers are real, and which are articifial?”

In his call for “passion in action”, Stefanovich took the group from corner to corner of the three-floor building – leaping on tables, giving countless verbal nods to his hometown crowd. As he always does, he catalyzed people’s thinking and created space for relationship and discomfort.

All in a day’s work for one of Richmond’s creative talents.