Three reasons why change in an organisation is like changing your name
June 12, 2015 by Tara Howell
Recently, I was one of those lucky ladies to walk down the aisle and get married to the man of my dreams. As those of who are married would know, this is without doubt one of the best days of your life. However, like all great things in life, there are many associated challenges and hurdles. The number one here for me was deciding to change my name.
It actually wasn’t until the week after my wedding that I decided to change my name, and I’d be lying if I said it didn’t feel real until I changed my name on Facebook (sad I know!). After a series of ‘is this what I want to be doing moments’, low and behold life went on!
But it wasn’t until working with one of our SRA Corporate Change clients that I really had a light bulb moment that linked what I was going through, to what our clients go through in their organisations. The process at its most basic level, is simply what we call ‘change’.
There are a number of different models and theories out there relating to how an organisation goes through change, you know, they freeze, change, and then freeze back again. Many of these are great, but what I’d like to touch on here, are three things you’ll likely feel when going through change, whether that be organisational change or personal change…
Going through change is scary, seriously it really can. One of the reasons it is scary is that change often happens fast (we call this rapid change). Because change happens so fast, it can sometimes feel as if it is out of control, which I am sure you’ll agree can feel scary.
Change can also make you feel lost, or more specifically that you’re losing your identity. I am sure you can see how this feeling fits into changing something personal, like your name, but what about change in an organisation? Well, organisations change their names too. So what business card do you use? How do you answer the phone? Welcome the feeling of lost identity.
Change can also make you feel unsure. Questions like; what does my future hold? Where to next? And what if I don’t like where the change is taking us? These are all things that are likely to make you feel unsure. This unsure feeling may be related to yourself (like changing your name!), your team, office or whole organisation. You can imagine how scared (see point 1) you’d be feeling if everyone in the organisation was feeling unsure!
So what can you do, knowing that when going through change you may feel all these things? My number one tip: embrace it. There is no point sitting around worrying about change that may or may not happen. Be proactive, work to make the change have a smaller impact on you, your team and organisation.
Yes, change can be scary, but it can also be exciting! At SRA Corporate Change we work to see our everyday lives in a positive light. Can you find the positive light in this situation? Yes, you can.
Let me leave you with 8 positive feelings you could choose to experience when going through change:
- and determination
… don’t they sound great?
Tara Howell has a background in marketing, strategy and organisational development.