How to Navigate Change

“The secret of change is to focus all of your energy not on fighting the old, but on building the new.” – Socrates

Heraclitus, a Greek philosopher, is quoted as saying “change is the only constant in life.”

This phrase remains true, especially since 2020. In recent months, with the market instability and employers asking employees to return to the office, we have seen so many clients experience significant change.

Forbes published an insightful article on 8 ways a leader can navigate change that we thought was helpful.

  1. Shift how you think about change. – What is your mindset when it comes to change? Do you automatically think negative or uneasy thoughts? Understanding how you think and feel when it comes to change will allow you to make sure you have the right outlook.
  2. Spend your time wisely. – It’s natural to get overwhelmed when you encounter change and feel unmotivated about working towards it, but allocating time to focus on the change can ensure it’s successful in the long run.
  3. Ask yourself, ‘Are you stuck?’ – Being aware that you feel stuck is necessary to move forward and something you need to resolve before managing the change. What part are you stuck on? Reaching out to a peer or mentor to share your resistance is beneficial.
  4. Break down large changes into smaller, more approachable ones. – Like any challenge you’re embarking on, it’s important to identify ways to break down the change into smaller manageable parts. Not only will you have more focus on each specific area, but you’ll likely feel less overwhelmed.
  5. Embrace the area outside of your comfort zone.  – No one wants to work outside of their comfort zone, but it’s when you are uncomfortable that you grow and evolve. Give yourself grace, know it’s ok to not have all the answers and take it one step at a time.
  6. Recognize your own power. – As a leader, what is your superpower? Are you good at listening, giving direction, bringing others together, etc.? Concentrate on what value you can add to the transition and leverage it.
  7. View change as an opportunity. – A change doesn’t have to mean bad or good, it can mean a new beginning, even if it’s scary. Find the positive in the change and what this means for you and your team.
  8. Be authentic when making change. – When implementing change, be authentic with those who are impacted. Speak your truth about the decision behind the change, and be available for questions, concerns and feedback.

The key takeaway from this list is, in order to navigate change in a positive and productive way, it starts with you. Yes, we need to lean on our organization and team members, but starting with yourself and being aware of your mindset sets the tone for those who look to you for leadership.

To learn more tools regarding change, watch our webinar “Navigating Change with Courage and Grit.”

Here are articles we found helpful on the topic:
Change is Hard. Here’s How to Make it Less Painful.
How Leaders can Embrace Change and Keep Thriving
Eight Tips for Best Navigating Change as a Leader