Origins of the Tenacious Change Approach

The Tenacious Change Approach emerged through the experiences of the developer, Tom Klaus, in the field of adolescent reproductive health, specifically teen pregnancy prevention. Earlier in his career he developed and delivered classroom-based prevention programs, some of which were replicated nationally in the United States.

He and his colleagues observed that long-term impact required changes in community ideas about teen pregnancy. Those ideas are often expressed in attitudes, policies, and practices within the community, and its systems, that either supported or worked against prevention efforts.

What they learned early on was that even the best prevention programs would have less impact if the community attitudes toward teen pregnancy prevention were not supportive. Therefore, simply working hard to implement a program with more students was not the most productive way to go. Without community support, even the best programs could fizzle and go away when unsupportive attitudes and policies emerged, or funding priorities changed.

Most communities he worked with wanted to get right to the question, “How do we DO teen pregnancy prevention?” when the real question needed to be, “How do we CREATE a supportive environment in our community to be able to do it?”

The Tenacious Change Approach was created to answer this question first, not just for teen pregnancy but many other community, organization, and system issues. It does this by focusing first on the Key Mindsets that inform attitudes and which need to be embraced by people who are working to create a community change movement. These Key Mindsets are organized into ten Essential Operating Principles that determine action. Finally, the Key Mindsets and Essential Operating Principles are animated through ten Core Tasks (the “How To”) of community change.

Getting Started with the Tenacious Change Approach, our online learning experience, focuses on the Key Mindsets and Essential Operating Principles. You can learn more here and also watch a brief video that describes the theory of change we use with the Tenacious Change Approach. When you are ready, you can join the learning experience by clicking on “Buy Now!” below.


You get:

  • 10 lessons, which include 10 streaming videos (20 min max length), each dedicated to a single Key Mindset and introduces and Essential Operating Principle and Core Task.
  • A 6-hour course that can be completed in a single day – like your own personal training event!
  • “Pause and Reflect” activities using the Getting Started with the Tenacious Change Approach Journal, a downloadable PDF which you can fill out online or print and complete by hand.
  • A private online learning community for connecting, networking, and sharing with others also working on community change.
  • Invitations to regular “Change Chats” with the developer, instructors, and guests.

Cost: Purchase lessons separately for $49 US each ($490 US total, if all purchased separately). For a limited time, to celebrate the opening of the course, you can buy the full course bundle of 10 lessons for $390 US, a $100 savings.


    Tenacious Change Website Upgrade and Update

    We’ve been doing some updating and upgrading of our website. If you haven’t been there for a while, check it out here. It isn’t finished yet, but we think you are going to like what we’ve been doing.

    While you are there, check out our Consultation, Workshop, and Training page where you can learn about our core offerings and services. On the first page of that section, we offer some questions to help you think through what you need and how we can help. We also have an attractive PDF version of this section you can download, print, and share with others on your team or in your organization. 

    Now, how can we help you make change happen for the greater good in your community or organization?


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