I am in the business of change. The change of business success, to be precise. Everyday, I’m faced with examples of how and how NOT to cause true and lasting change in a business.
The Decision To Change
The change to anything, including a business often comes about as a result of some form of pain. Once the pain is acutely (and in some instances consistently over a long period of time) felt, then the business owner makes a decision to get a solution for the problem. The change actually starts with this decision. How firm are you, the owner in making this decision? How far are you willing to stray from what you know and what you’ve been doing for years to get out of the pain? For example, if a company owner is saying that he wants to be the top of his industry in one year but he balks when investing at the level it would take to get him there, he hasn’t fully made the decision to grow at that speed.
Are You Lining Up Day-to-Day
The practice of daily decisions that support the change vision is really the key to getting the change that you want. For example, when you say you want to lose weight and you eat an ice-cream sandwich everyday, your day-to-day actions may not look like they’re having much of an impact on your end results but 6 months later, not only have you not lost weight but you’ve GAINED it. It’s because your day-to-day decisions were in line with your unchanged self, not the new one you wanted to become. Similarly, companies are saying they want to become a certain way but it is so ingrained in them to do things in the comfortable way that unless there’s a conscious effort, the new behaviour isn’t internalized. And change doesn’t happen.
From A Brain Perspective
Neuroscientists have figured this out. Change doesn’t happen because of knowledge, it happens because you train your neurons to fire a new way by repeatedly doing the same new behaviour. For example, if you’re trying to build muscles, you can read book after book and attend seminar after seminar about the science of building muscles. However, if you never once lift a weight after all that knowledge, you won’t build a single muscle. Business change is the same way. You can hire coach after coach or attend workshop after workshop but until you actually and consistently put one or two of the things that you’ve learned into practice, you won’t actually see a change in your results.
So the next time you want change, look at if you’re actually doing the doing or just hoping that the knowledge will save you from your doomed destiny of trial and error.
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