Are You Ready to Deal With Changes in the Workplace?


At 8 years old, you wanted to be an astronaut, fire fighter and guitar player. By the time you had gone to high school, you had no idea. What you did know for certain is that you were going to be with your high-school sweetheart forever. That changed by the time you had gone to college. Then by your second semester, you felt like it was time for a different look, so you cut your hair. After you graduated from college, you switched jobs over a dozen times until you found one that you were actually good at. Now your boss has decided to change your job description. Then you started feeling that you were not doing your job well.

Changes in the workplace are much like the changes that have occurred throughout your life. Today, you are different than you were 20, 10 or even five years ago. It’s also a part of advancement and evolution. While most people welcome doing something new, there are others who are more comfortable with their everyday routine. Needless to say, your fear of change is a valid reaction. However, by not embracing it, you could be sacrificing your changes to excel in your career.

Pushing the Panic Bottom

Since you were good at and really liked your responsibilities at work the thought of doing something different is causing a bit of trepidation, which is a normal reaction. And you are naturally concerned that you might not be as good or if you will even like the upcoming changes to your position. Just remember that you are not alone.

“There are many people who fear change at work for a variety of reasons,” an international business speaker and the author and president of Humor at Work, Michael Kerr told Forbes. “Fear of failure, fear of success, fear of looking stupid and fear of the unknown.”

But whether or not you embrace the new processes, operations or procedures in the workplace is contingent upon your past experiences or beliefs, current and future outlook, how you look at it, and how it’s presented to you by those in charge. According to Dr. Tamar Chansky, author of Freeing Yourself from Anxiety, “changes at work are among the top life stressors and how we often succeed is through repetition”. The question is: how will you move to the next level in your career without experiencing some form of change?

Assimilate or Incinerate

Take a moment to think about your high-school sweetheart. Think about how in love you guys were at one time. You probably felt like you couldn’t live without your first love. Now think about how you felt when you guys broke up and how you feel about it today. People change, seasons change, and so on and so on!

Change can be painful and overwhelming; but it’s also a part of growth. Changes in the workplace are inevitable; and it’s the way organisations survive in an ever changing marketplace. And it’s coming to your workplace. So how do plan to deal with it?

“Adaptable people flourish amidst chaos while inflexible ones flounder; they find openings in situations where others only see closure,” said McChrystal leadership consultant and Forbes’ contributor Jeff Boss. “Adaptability is what allows organisms, people and businesses to solve problems, overcome challenges and move back from the edge of attrition to the more stable ground of relevance.”

The fact of matter is there’s nothing you can do but welcome your new responsibilities. Try changing the way you think and remember that it’s for the overall success of the company. In other words, focus on the bigger picture. Also focus on the benefits of learning a new skill, which is critical to your future success. If you are still unable or unwilling, then it’s time to start looking for another job.

“The price of doing the same old thing is far higher than the price of change.”

Bill Clinton’