Be Outstanding—Don’t Let CHANGE Happen TO You!

shared bedroom, change, chaos, dealing with change

Ever rearranged a room and right in the middle of the process thought, This will never work! It’s too much change. I don’t know what to do next. Chaos!

But then, you push forward—and suddenly, it all comes together.

That’s what happened when my wife, Karen, and I changed around the big dorm-like room at the top of our Denver home. With most of our seven offspring grown and gone but returning frequently with their kids, it was time for … change.

It was not something we had to do. It was something we chose to do. With eight grandchildren and two more due by July 4th, well, you understand.

Got Change?

A couple years ago, Mark Pizzi, President & COO Nationwide Insurance, made this statement when I was in Columbus, Ohio to teach “Personal Accountability and the QBQ!”

“John we have so much change coming in the financial services industry, we can’t even begin to prep people for it.”

A refreshing statement of truth—and humility. Management is not all-knowing and all-powerful. Those in leadership positions from the CEO to front-line supervisors to the grassroots staff are human, too. They struggle with change like everyone else.

I just love Mark’s insight. ??

But what his statement really says is what you already know. Putting it in everyday language—change is a constant, change is speeding up, and we better all get used to … change.

We also need to begin viewing change in a whole new way.

The New View of Change

The way mediocre organizations still view change is “anticipating, accepting, and adapting.” That worked a couple decades ago, but no longer. The new view—the healthy and effective view of change—is a whole new paradigm:

Outstanding organizations choose to create change.

Given the organic, constant, and inevitable nature of change, how could we ever think that what works today will work tomorrow? If a strategy or tactic is working now, the odds are high it won’t work in the future. There is just too much change taking place in our world for it to be any other way.

Here’s what needs to change if organizations want to master change:

From Outstanding! and the chapter titled “Choose to Change”

Rather than fearing change, outstanding organizations come to see change as a good thing—as necessary and even exciting. They understand that though there is often pain involved in change, it’s far less than the pain that comes from never changing at all. Not only do they accept and adapt to change, they also go the extra critical step of accelerating and creating change.

Simply put, outstanding organizations take charge of change by changing themselves first. They know that, otherwise, change will happen to them—and if that happens, it might just be too late to change.

So the next time you believe so much change is coming that you “can’t even begin to prep people for it,” prep yourself by choosing to change … today.

In your organization, do people fear or embrace change? What is being done to accelerate and create change?


2 Responses

  1. John, In my last 10 years of managing many departments I committed to change and even try to hedge my business plan before the train of change arrives at the station at each yearly business cycle.
    Having the team approach change collectively has been a positive transition.

  2. Hi John!
    Spot on regarding change and our innate aversion to it!
    In today’s environment, we need to recondition ourselves and our organizations to not only embrace change when it happens but to INVITE and WELCOME change – as that is what is required to catapult us ahead of our competition and achieve success!

    Thanks for your moving articles!

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