“If you want to succeed, you should strike out on new paths rather than travel the worn paths of accepted success.” – John D. Rockefeller, Jr.
I’ve had a number of conversations lately that seemed on the surface to make sense, but the more I’m thinking about them the more I think they miss the point. For example, while having lunch with somebody I have a lot of respect for, I heard this comment: “We have to be ready for change and when it comes be willing and able to handle it.”
That sounds reasonable enough. We all have things come at us on a regular basis that require change or flexibility or our part. Recognizing that and being ready for it seems like a good idea, and it is. But I don’t think it’s enough.
We can’t wait for change and then handle it really well. If we want to be truly successful and have the future we want to have, we have to seek out change. We have to be intentional about finding the change we need to make and then aggressively trying to make it happen.
Look at your business, or your life – what needs to change for you to have the future you want? What isn’t in place right now that needs to be 5 years from now? What is in place today that won’t be relevant in the future? If you aren’t asking yourself those kinds of questions as a leader then you’re not doing your job.
If you’re struggling to answer those questions, get help. Hopefully there are others in your organization who think about the future, who have dreams or big ideas. Get them involved. What do they see as critical to the future? What do they see as barriers to that future?
The point is, don’t wait until you’re confronted with change you have to make before you start making it. Waiting for change and then handling it exceptionally well may help you avoid disaster. Seeking out change and making it happen on your terms will help you create the future you want. Decide which you’d rather have – then go look for it.