Change the way you look at change
When I started at ILSA in 2001, our owners had the employees read and review a great business book. Now that I am managing the business, hardly a week goes by that I don’t think about the principles laid out in that book. Who Moved My Cheese by Spencer Johnson is an enduring work because of those principles. The simplicity of Johnson’s little parable makes it easy to read and digest, but the principles are profound.
Putting the Principles to Work
Every week I review our projects and initiatives, and also our progress towards meeting our goals. I often wonder if I am closer to Hem or Haw, the two characters most affected by change. In a service industry, we have to be ready for constant change. Not just to our business, but to our client’s business as well. There is always that urge to “wait and see”, rather than to plan for and implement change when necessary. Overcoming that urge is vital to keeping the doors open and the paychecks coming. The great takeaways from the book are:
- Change Happens They Keep Moving The Cheese
- Anticipate Change Get Ready For The Cheese To Move
- Monitor Change Smell The Cheese Often So You Know When It Is Getting Old
- Adapt To Change Quickly The Quicker You Let Go Of Old Cheese, The Sooner You Can Enjoy New Cheese
- Change Move With The Cheese
- Enjoy Change! Savor The Adventure And Enjoy The Taste Of New Cheese!
- Be Ready To Change Quickly And Enjoy It Again They Keep Moving The Cheese.
If you haven’t read the book, go get it! It’s a quick read and very thought-provoking. Don’t buy a bunch of copies and throw them at all of your employees. Meet with everyone, discuss the principles. Critique some of the ideas, I did! I don’t know if it will change your life, but it might change the way you deal with change.