The Guarantee
May 24

Pain Point #8: My Organization is Resistant to Change

The biggest differentiator between a growth-oriented CEO and an execution-oriented CEO is the former focuses on growing the business where the latter focuses on the day-to-day operations. In today’s society, we cannot afford to just be execution-oriented. The greatest growth-oriented CEOs are strategic by nature. They also know how important it is to leverage the expertise of others in overcoming the big strategic issues and obstacles to growth they are battling daily.

As we come out of this pandemic and get back to a place of normalcy, we need to be aware that the same ole tricks may not cut it. If we look around, a lot of businesses have already closed their doors for good. So what is helping those that are thriving in today’s economy?

RedRover is here to help answer those questions. We will be sharing the top 10 pain points that most every CEO is facing in 2021 — those gut-wrenching, keep-you-up-at-night issues – and how to navigate them and come out with your tail wagging!

Pain Point #8: My Organization is Resistant to Change

WHY DO SO MANY great organizations struggle with change? After all, as the Greek philosopher Heraclitus once said, “the only thing that is constant is change,” and that sentiment couldn’t be truer today.

Harvard Business Review’s 2020 article titled ”What Really Prevents Companies from Thriving in a Recession,” professor at Harvard Ranjay Gulati and BlackRock senior managing director Mark Weidman reveal 80% of companies that survive a recession struggle to meet pre-recession revenue for several years. 

They identify an organization’s refusal to make even mild changes to their budgets. Leaders argue this fact by pointing to their cost-cutting measures and newly implemented efficiencies measures. However, research reveals that organizations fail to invest in new opportunities because they don’t meet the risk thresholds. The same research showed 9% of companies whose revenue boomed, embraced change by investing in new opportunities. 

Many businesses begin with a point of differentiation but if they fail to adjust quickly enough to changing markets, that point of differentiation can simply be lost to a more nimble, adaptable competitor.

What causes that failure to adjust to change? Cultural anthropologist, Andrea Simon, in a 2013 Forbes article titled “Why We’re So Afraid of Change — and Why That Holds Businesses Back,” said it boils down to these three realities. Habits are powerful. Our brain limits what it sees over time, and our current reality essentially conforms to past perceptions — or what we know. Those early experiences prevent us from seeing things in new, innovative ways unless we push ourselves to do so.

Our brains hate change. As we learn something new, our prefrontal cortex is working in overdrive, and it is exhausting. That’s why our natural tendency is to stick with what we know versus pushing the proverbial boulder uphill.

You have to experience new ways of doing things to really accept change, instead of just reading or talking about it. However, to do something new, you must actually allow the change to begin in the first place, despite any possible anxiety. While due diligence is important when considering changes to implement, avoid getting so caught up in analysis — which can often be a stall tactic in disguise — that your change efforts fizzle out. 

It may help you to move forward if you remember that change doesn’t have to be permanent. Just make sure you are measuring the results of the change and adapting your strategy quickly as you go. 

Even though creating change can be challenging, it is essential that your business continues to adapt to evolving consumer and market demands, so that your company doesn’t end up stalled like so many others. If you are aware of your inherent resistance to change, you are more apt to battle through that natural internal wiring and persevere at continuously improving and preparing your company for future market realities.

And that’s the kind of company-wide mark every business professional wants to leave.

If you’re currently feeling this pain and don’t have the time and resources to tackle it, tag in the RedRover pack!

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