Continuous improvement efforts almost always include tweaking or changing the way we do things. For many people, the word itself, change, comes with a flood of negative emotions and heightened anxiety. These emotions are caused not by the change itself, but by the steps needed to make the change happen. When presented with a new goal, idea, or option, it is easy to perceive that everything we have been doing has been wrong or ineffective. This could NOT be further from the truth. Even if a person, group, or organization is rated as great, there is room to improve to be rated excellent. A rating of excellent can be improved to exceptional. Exceptional can be improved to innovative. It is important to identify what can be improved and what needs to remain at the core to take an organization to the next level. Another common cause of our negative reaction to change is not the desired outcome of the change, but rather the messiness of steps needed to reach the desired change. Consider road construction, for example. Changing a two-lane highway into a four-lane highway takes years of construction. Construction represents the steps needed for change to happen. These steps are messy, create congestion, slow down progress(temporarily), and cause frustration. However, once the steps are completed, the desired change allows for less congestion, faster progress, and eases frustration. It is crucial to understand these underlying causes of our negative connotations of change. Patience and strategic action planning are essential to successfully embrace and effectively navigate change. Change is always included in continuous improvement efforts which are not possible without having a growth mindset, a relentless desire to push the proverbial envelope, and an unwavering commitment to excellence. There is no future in the past, but the past provides us with proof of why we should continuously improve.
Luhr's Lingo 3.29.19
Monday, April 01, 2019