If you can’t fly, then run. If you can’t run, then walk. If you can’t walk, then crawl. But whatever you do, you have to keep moving forward” – Martin Luther King Jr.
We have seen more change in the past 12 months than we have in the past 12 years! When COVID hit we were all visioning a post COVID world somewhere on the horizon things would go back to a similar state. Instead what we are seeing is a constant rollercoaster of change and uncertainty that has us holding on with all our might till things land and settle.
As MLK says we have to keep moving forward, the ability to be agile, embrace change and be future focused has become more important than ever. Over the past 12 months we have had a box seat to the biggest change simulation we have seen and probably will ever experience!
We have been running an increasing number of change workshops across a range of industries, drawing on the COVID examples all around us, personal and professional.
This has helped us accelerate peoples learning. We are all feeling it in different ways, people reactions will vary greatly. Strategies and techniques to self manage and embrace change have become more important than ever.
Building capability around leading and supporting others through change is easier than ever before as we are immersed in a real life example that we can draw many learnings from.Empathy and understanding of people’s reactions has been catapulted forward as organisations focus more on wellbeing, resilience, self-care and managing mental health.
We are seeing fatigue across all sectors as a result of running a 12 month marathon of emotions, challenge and conscious thinking (always takes more energy!).
It is in every aspect of our lives.
I dropped in some dry cleaning last week. I had been going to my dry cleaner for 23 years. In fact the phone number I would give every time was my old land line from 3 houses ago (who has those anymore!). Joe my dry cleaner said Sharon this may be the last piece of dry cleaning you drop off here. I was surprised they always seemed busy and were in a prominent position. I enquired why.
He said “peoples habits have changed, with the move to flexible working , they are not dressing up for work anymore. If leisure gear was dry cleanable we would be ok but we can’t afford the rent. I felt an automatic tinge of sadness, for Joe and his business, the longevity of our relationship and the unexpected change. This man and his business had been in my life for over 20 years, I went there when my kids were babies and now my two young adult daughters take their cleaning there and give the same land line number.
Joe was right, peoples, habits have changed as has our workplace, there is no post COVID only a new norm that will continue to change and shape as we move forward. The tinge of sadness, fear and anxiety we feel is normal as we are letting go of many things that were part of our fabric and things we held close.
Focusing on culture and the energy of your teams will be important to reenergise and engage them moving forward.
We can’t control the destination, but we can control how we get there. Take some time out with your teams to leverage the learnings that COVID has brought upon you.
From challenge comes opportunity and from opportunity comes GROWTH.
Fast track your forward focus by providing support, space for strategic discussion, a framework for new habits and a toolkit for future success.
“You can’t change the direction of the wind, but you can adjust my sails to always reach my destination.” – Jimmy Dean