Friday, August 10, 2007

Surviving organizational change

Organizational change - whether it be an internal reorganization or a change in ownership, can be a good thing, but if it is not properly managed, it can become a major distraction to the work at hand.

Think about the last major change you faced at work. I'll bet that while it generated a lot of buzz, it did little to drive progress to results. Faced with change and uncertainty, people tend to pull back into their shells a bit. Rather than pushing that big project ahead, folks begin to "circle the wagons" in an effort to protect their jobs.

The sad news is that while keeping one's head down is viewed as a way to survive change - in great organizations, it's a great way to highlight the value you are not bringing to the table! Career Journal takes one particular spin on this which I think is spot on. You have to focus on the opportunity to show the value you bring to the company rather than hiding under your desk to avoid detection - you might not be seen, but your name shows up on payroll reports!

While the Career Journal article seems pointed for upper level muckity-mucks, those of us a bit lower on the corporate food chain should also take heed. Educational / Tech blogger Doug Johnson has some really practical advice - note in particular point 2 - It's all about doing something meaningful and valuable rather than just relying on your title.


No matter the source of the change, your best chance at succeeding is to establish a credible reputation as one of those go-getters that your company just cant do without, rather than being known as "that guy with the bad suit in accounting"! So, start making yourself indispensable TODAY!


Wally Bock said...

When there is major organizational change, we always wind up with blood on the floor. Sometimes the advice to be indispensable works. But sometimes, despite your best efforts, you find yourself on the street or in a new job that simply sucks. Then you may want to sit in the ruins of your life, pour ashes over your head and shake your fist at the sky. Do that for a moment, then get on with moving forward to whatever opportunity is over the next hill.

Patrick Williams said...

Wally, I just LOVE the way you paint a picture with words!