Updated: Jul 27
You can become a “change agent.”
In a book called TEACHING THE ELEPHANT, author James Belasco reminds us that “change is a process and not a destination.” I interpret this to mean that change is constant and continuous, not something we end when the going gets tough.
Being the person who takes the risk to create change when change is needed can be a tough place to be. The key is making a change when needed, not necessarily when it is wanted or comfortable. Change is difficult and time-consuming, and there will be a loss for some, and there could be a question of why create change when there is nothing wrong. How often have you heard, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”? That can be true in some instances, but sometimes fixing it is the only way to make
progress or create forward movement otherwise, things can remain stagnant.
When exercising leadership, intuition can play a part in making progress on issues we care about. It is important to know when to create change, and we may need to rely on our gut feelings to begin forming a plan for change. Do not create change to create change. Be informed, collect the data, and make an informed decision.
Here are some things to remember when you create or are part of creating change.
· Have the willingness and courage to take risks on those challenging issues.
· Diagnose the situation correctly and do not default to technical solutions to see quick results.
· Understand there will be loss when those risks are taken.
· Recognized our triggers, vulnerabilities, and capabilities while staying “in the moment.”
· Don’t do what is comfortable, do what is needed.
· Be willing and prepared to get to the serious issues of resistance – great work comes from chaos, but there is a responsibility to keep the work productive and not personal.
· Be aware of the factions you are working with…those who are hands-on learners who want to see results quickly and will try to force technical solutions, while others need to read and reflect on the change.
Our society is constantly changing, and it can be a lot easier not to change. Consider your role in your community… and work…are you a change agent?