Be Ready for Change

Change is a fact of life. Especially in corporations. Markets change and companies adapt. You, as an employee, need to be ready for change.

To follow up on my recent post “Is Your Career Safe from Automation?” I felt it appropriate to discuss a book I read a while back on how to cope with change, because I concluded the last post with a quote by George Bernard Shaw about progress being impossible without change. The future is here, technology is spreading like wildfire, and change is coming for most of us!

The book is called Who moved my cheese? and is about change as subtly implied by the title. The whole point of the book is to accept and embrace change as a part of life. The point is illustrated through four characters caught in a maze trying to find cheese. Two mice, Sniff and Scruffy, who are more successful in finding cheese due to always being ready for change, never letting down their guards, and generally having a very pro-active approach. And two persons, Hem and Haw, who are less successful as they settle down as soon as they find a collection of cheese, i.e. a slow and reactive approach. But of course the cheese eventually runs out, and they have not prepared.

You can find detailed descriptions of their personalities several places on, se e.g. here.

The book has taught me 7 key lessons, which a want to share with you:

  1. Change is bound to happen – status quo will not prevail indefinitely
  2. You should accept that it’s a matter of when change happens not if change happens
  3. Be mindful of potential change – know it will come, be alert and look for change
  4. Adapt to change fast – the quicker you let go of the past the sooner you can embrace the future
  5. Do change – going with change is always preferable to trying to avoid or ignore it
  6. Appreciate change – find the positive in change
  7. Don’t settle in – adapt quickly and remember change is coming right around the corner

These are important lessons. Change is a part of everyday corporate life and as such many companies value change readiness on their employees and reward them appropriately. Hence embracing change can be very good for your career.

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