“Sometimes if you want to see change for the better, you have to take things into your own hands.” – Clint Eastwood
We talk a lot in this space about change. A lot of the things I post are intended to motivate people to make change, or to give some examples about how change might work in your organization, or just some tips on how you might effectively make change in business or life. Usually it’s supposed to be either encouraging or some kind of a call to action.
But that doesn’t mean I think it’s easy. The reality is that sometimes we approach change with all the right methods and behaviors and we say & do what we think are all the right things – and then we run into some kind of immovable wall. No matter what we try, we can’t seem to get around it. And when that happens it’s very frustrating, to the point that sometimes we just give up.
There are lots of barriers that can arise, but probably the most common relates to one thing – other people. Sometimes we get so excited for change, we forget that not everybody’s thinking the same way we are. We get all geared up to do what we think is something fantastic, and then we hit a road block.
Unfortunately, there are times when we aren’t in a position to ‘force’ people to make change. Sometimes we find out that (at least for now) we physically can’t make all the changes we think are necessary in our organization. That’s the part where we get frustrated and, sometimes, just give up.
So as you run into some of those barriers (and you will), and even though there may not be an easy or obvious solution to getting past those barriers, keep this in mind: Figure out what you can control, and then control the heck out of it. It’s possible you may not be able to revolutionize your company or industry right now, but you can change something. Start somewhere. There are things about your own behavior or maybe your department or maybe part of your business that you can impact today – so focus on that.
That doesn’t mean you should just give up on the big change you want. But maybe it’s not the right time. For some reason that barrier is there, maybe because there are other things you should be taking care of first. So take care of them. Fix the stuff you can fix.
As you prove to those around you that you can make change and that change is for the better, gradually people will start to come around. And then you’ll have the opportunity to do the big stuff.