The rumors are true: One thing you can always count on is Change. Things are rolling along smoothly, and...BAM!! There it is: Things are about to Change.
Whether it's exciting or annoying, we all have to face this Master Disruptor sooner or later. So get your organization ready, because like it or not, Change is coming for a visit .
I’ve seen organizational change up close and from a few different angles:
My first experience with organizational change was as the replacement for an apartment community manager who-–unknown to her–-was about to be fired that very day. (Ouch!) The whole thing was pretty dramatic for me, the rest of the staff, and the apartment community residents. And that change resulted in a cascade of new changes for months to come.
Later, at another organization, my unhappy co-workers were watching the clock, trying to stay with the organization for 3 years for the sake of their resumes. Disappointed and convinced that the organization would never change, they engineered a change of their own: a silent mass exodus, as one by one, they all left.
Then, there was the time a co-worker and I served as co-directors of our organization for nearly a year and a half. Between the two of us, we had perfectly complementary skills and a determination to do a stellar job. It was exciting, infuriating, rewarding, annoying, challenging, and tear-producing. And one of the most interesting and adventuresome things I've ever done! (Would somebody please hand me an honorary PhD in Change Management for that? :D .)
I’ve helped nonprofits navigate leadership changes as the consultant advising one organization when their founding exec announced her retirement and as interim executive director of another nonprofit that serves homeless women. I loved both projects and learned lessons about executive transitions as "the advisor" in one situation and as "the implementer" in the other.
Change has been a great teacher. And I've tried to use those lessons in my ongoing work as a consultant to nonprofit organizations.
In the next few posts, I’ll share a few things I've learned about change by covering at least these 5 ideas about organizational Change:
Until next time...