10-megabyte hard disks… DOS… 5 1/4-inch floppy drives….The technology of the 1980s and 1990s bears almost no resemblance to what we have today. In the same way, our jobs and organizations probably bear little resemblance to that time. Companies reduce their staffs, outsource their operations, rearrange their organizational structure, and upgrade their platforms and tools. Dealing with all of this change can be daunting. Yet being able to do so is vital to your career.
As I began to think about tips I could share on handling change, I realized that reactions to those changes mirror the reactions to the death of a loved one. In particular, I kept thinking about a tragedy that struck a south Texas family I met whose young son Ivan had been killed in an accident, and the amazing way they dealt with it. Their actions helped me put together the following tips on dealing with change. (For the story of Ivan and his resilient and generous family, see this post in my personal blog.)
Note: This information is also available as a PDF download.
#1: Recognize that change does happen
When we were children, as the saying goes, we thought, acted, and spoke like children. When we became adults, though, we put childish ways behind us. Our own personal lives change as we grow older. Why should our careers and jobs be any different? Denying that change is or will be occurring, and continuing to live in the past (something my daughters allege about me), only makes things more difficult. Read more...