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Please don't change
Forget about changing and start focusing on becoming something worthwhile.
Change is an interesting word.
A lot of people talk about helping companies change – I’m pretty sure we’ve done that ourselves at some point.
But change is actually a negative in most cases. “I really need to change”. “This has to change.” “We need a change programme.” And so on. Change is often interchangeable (sorry) with ‘stopping’ or ‘giving up’ something.
Typically, people and companies change away from something: their current state is broken or making them unhappy and the emotional reaction is the need to change it.
The positive version is ‘become’ because it sets a future target to achieve. I remember a friend saying that she’d given up smoking when, after many failed attempts, she set her mind on becoming a non-smoker, instead of ‘giving up’ smoking. That future version of herself gave her something positive to aim towards, while giving up felt like losing something.
The same applies to companies. Every so-called transformation programme will fail if there is not a clear end goal to aim for. If you can’t shape that vision of what the company needs to become – and I’m sorry but ‘digitising our business’ is not a vision of anything – you’re in the same mode as when you try to give up smoking or ‘stop eating so much’.
So forget about changing and start focusing on becoming.
There’s a good chance that by envisioning what you can become, many of those things you feel need to change will simply become irrelevant to your futurestate business and you can spend your money on creating the future, not leaving the past.