We’ve all heard that people don’t like change. This stems from age-old theory that we are creatures of habit and like to stay in our comfort zone. I challenge that as there’s one type of change that we all like – change for the better!
Those that say they’re happy to carry on as they are, I believe, are actually making an excuse for being too fearful of the risk that change might bring.
I think that there are three possible scenarios that come into play:
- The process of instituting the change is difficult and the end result is worse than we started with – a lose / lose
- The process of instituting the change is difficult but the end result is better than where we were before – a lose that leads to a win
- The process of the change is exciting and invigorating and the result that accrues is significantly better than the path we were on previously – a major win then win
There’s actually another scenario that can eventuate that might sound strange. There may be situations where people are jumpy about actually getting improved outcomes – as weird as it might sound, they’re fearful of improved results!
Sometimes, it seems easier to keep chugging along, churning out the same stuff and achieving the same outcomes – the thought (mostly sub-conscious) of getting something different – even if it’s better – can freak some people out. The great Dr Stephen R. Covey, author of the bestselling The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People has this to say about it: “In these especially difficult, uncertain times, the need is to develop a solid unwavering core. When we adopt changeless, timeless principles such as trust, fairness, service, courage, humility, integrity, human dignity, contribution, growth and empowerment, as our core values, we anchor and enable ourselves to adapt and respond to the forces of change and the new dynamics of the global economy”.
In essence, what Covey is saying is that if we have a strong base of sound principles/values, we feel much more comfortable with the opportunities that come our way to change ourselves and/or our situation. Or even better, to be proactive and go looking for the changes that will add value to our lives.
My advice – don’t be afraid of change. Like Dr Covey says, (as clichéd as it sounds) think of it as an opportunity. Think of the late Steve Jobs, who was fired from his own company, Apple, many years ago, who once said “innovation is the ability to see change as an opportunity – not a threat”. We all know what Jobs went on and did, changing the face of music and technology.
Here at David Forman, we have recently undergone our own change with a refresh of our brand identity – it’s fresh, contemporary and exciting! But like Dr Covey said, what is changeless are the results we get for clients and their people.