Change is inevitable and the rate of change is increasing. According to Emmott Rogers 16% of us will resist change, which is 1 person in 6. These are people who will find keeping a job very difficult. Every aspect of the workplace is transforming and individuals need to be equally adaptable.
The successful employee of the future will have a number of characteristics and key amongst them will be an acceptance to adopt change. The rate of change in all aspects of life is accelerating and business, whether that is private, public or civic, is one of the fastest.
There are two key facets of an individual being adaptable;
- The person must have the correct attitude, the instinctive desire to behave differently. This is not the natural way for many of us but we need to educate ourselves.
- Be capable of acquiring the skills needed for the changed situation. Can we learn and adapt to allow us to adopt?
These two criteria are in that order deliberately. The person who can easily gain skills and knowledge is of no use if the attitude is wrong and they won’t apply them. However, even the best attitude isn’t enough if the technical skills cannot be learned.
It is evident that as decisions are taken regarding the people to be retained at a time of redundancies a key factor will be the acceptance of change and willingness to lead rather than follow.
We are all products of our history so far. We see ourselves in certain ways but not necessarily in the same ways other people see us. Do you know the principles by which you want to live? Can you describe the person you want to be? Do you know how other people see you? Are you a different person at home than at work?
What is it you want to change?
Physical appearance? The way you dress? Your physique? Your hairstyle? It is well known that for many of us, how we look does impact on our confidence levels. Similarly, the way we look may be indicative of the way we look after health and, therefore, prevent illness. We discuss this in the health section.
Behaviours? However we wish to be perceived, however we think of ourselves, the truth is we will only be judged by our behaviour. Saying one thing doesn’t matter if we do something else; whatever people’s perception of you, it is their truth about you. We act based on two states of mind, conscious and sub-conscious. The conscious mind is, hopefully, rational and deals in facts. We take the time to consider our actions and reactions; we gather data and logically assess. The sub-conscious controls our habits and instincts. Sometimes these will be good but despite the facts rather than because of them.
So, we can become even more rational and take the time to explain our logic and decisions and we can personally review our habits and decide which ones to keep and which ones to change.
Changing habits is very difficult and we are not even discussing addictions, just ingrained ways of behaving. Taking a very general overview, to change a habit you need two things;
- A desire to change and knowledge of exactly which behaviour you want to alter
- A substitute, a better or more acceptable behaviour. Let’s consider an example;
Because you are an enthusiast and keen to interact with colleagues you have a tendency to jump in, to interrupt before they have finished speaking, you think you know what they want to say and make presumptions. You may be correct or you may well be wrong or only partially correct. Whichever, it is both polite and empowering to hear the other person through to the end of their thought or submission.
Clearly, in this example, this approach may well reflect the go-to behaviour, the habit, and one acquired over years of human interaction. Stopping doing it will be difficult. The good news is, now you have spotted it and recognised it must change.