There are events in life, ‘seminal’ is a popular descriptor, that have the capacity to significantly alter what comes after them. The Change Effect is a way of looking at these events, and how they affect the people and processes around them.
Change is a constant in our working and living environments. However, at an individual level, we all decide, consciously or not, how we are going to react to change. We can decide to fight it or ignore it, we can decide to go with as it is it or try to use it to change ourselves. These are the four options of the Change Effect. The option you choose – and it need not be just one of them, although one is usually dominant, will determine the outcome of a situation.
What initiated this line of thought was a question from one of my clients about my own career choices. They were facing some significant decisions that would affect the rest of their lives and they asked me why I made the move from secure employment into consultancy. That took me back in time and started a train of thought…
The death of my sister was the catalyst for me, it was the change that got me looking at what I was doing and deciding that I didn’t want to have an average life. I realised that I wanted to work with people and help them make a positive difference to their lives rather than be focused on contributing to a corporate bottom line.
So I took option four, in a time of personal change I decided to use it as an opportunity to reshape my own future.
Interestingly, it was the least secure option. It would have been far easier to adopt any of the other three options, ignoring it, going with it or even fighting it by denying it.
For me it was a step into the unknown. While it was scary, in that I didn’t know precisely what was going to happen, it was also exciting – because I knew that I was going in the direction I wanted to move. Exactly where I would end up I didn’t know, but I did know it felt like the right thing to do. And that in itself was a comforting thought.
Looking back, the process taught me that it is more difficult to achieve our objectives if we do not remain open and vulnerable to what’s new and different, even if at times it feels like we can be sure of nothing.
This experience of my own prompts me to talk to my coaching clients about how they have reacted to times of change in their lives, which one of the four strategies they chose.
I’ve found that there are no right or wrong answers, but the way we react to change will influence the outcomes. Being aware of how you are handling change, making it a conscious rather than an unconscious decision, can not only give you more control over the results, but it can help you achieve your goals more efficiently and effectively.
If you would like to discuss how executive coaching can drive positive change for you, or what changes are influencing your life at the moment, please contact Melinda Fell email: firstname.lastname@example.org.