Help, we’re growing! Help, the market is changing! Help! Change.
When big companies make moves, the results are felt by the people whohelped make them big, or helped keep them big, or helped them getbigger. Whether it’s the economy, or a merger, or a “change in compplan” (aka: reduction in pay), or the introduction of a new product,things change every day in the business world.
In the sales world, things change even faster than that whether your company is big or small.
I want to address some of the elements of change, show the reality ofit, and in the process rename the situation to one that is more easilyunderstood by those on the receiving end. You.
Change comes about either by greed, or by taking advantage ofopportunity, or by corporate growth, or by evolution to a better way,or by outside economic forces, or from internal economic conditions, orto appease Wall Street (cut costs and increase earnings), or bymodernization, or by innovation. And did I mention greed?
Reality bites: “We had to make some tough decisions,” means ahammer is about to fall. “Today we are announcing the merger of,”means everyone will be in panic mode about their job.
Change brought about by the reasons stated above often brings about alowered morale inside the company — especially if management is notcommunicating well. Low morale also leads to lower productivity, lackof service response, and ultimately, a loss of customers.
Here are a few ways to look at change.
On the bright side:
Change is refinement.
Change is growth.
Change is movement.
Change is acquiring.
Change is upgrading.
Change is opportunity.
On the dark side
Change is eliminating.
Change is terminating.
Change is hiding or avoiding truth.
Change is disappointing.
Change is scary.
Change is morale busting.
In order to be most effective, and have a positive outcome, change mustbe communicated by leadership in a straight-forward way — not downsize or right-size –it’s layoff and job elimination — and then state the REAL reason — notmaking enough profit — duplication of title in a merger — lack ofsales. Unfortunately, this is rarely done.
Some people are “waiting to see what happens.” Big mistake.
Here is the reality, the remedy, and a few personal rules to help you react to change:
Keep your attitude UP: Rather than “this sucks,” make a plan forwhat can be done. Make a plan for what you can do. If nothing can bedone, or what can be done falls short of your ideals, make a plan toget out.
Keep your thoughts focused on doing your BEST: HINT: In mergersor slower economic times, companies keep their BEST people. Be yourbest. Instead of “waiting to see what happens,” decide to be your best,ask how you can help, and lead the charge. Set a positive example, andwork as hard as you can, so that whatever happens, you’ll always beable to say you did your best until the last minute of the last day.
Keep your mind open to other possibilities: What would you really like to do? Why aren’t you doing that anyway?
Stay away from — don’t get involved in — politics and pity parties:Odds are that if you’re dissatisfied with what is happening, so areothers. Stay away from groaners, whiners, and other assortednon-solution-oriented people. Waste of your time and energy.
Don’t lose faith. Your outlook on what could or should happenwill determine your willingness to work hard now. Faith in yourself andyour circumstance will carry the day. Change happens daily. Don’t getnervous — get excited. No matter what happens, the sun will come uptomorrow. Fear of the unknown is always greater than fear of the known.There are no easy answers when you’re in the heat of the fire. Followyour heart, and your wallet will catch up.
NOTE WELL: If you have a family, meet with them and get their ideas andtheir support. Your family wants the best for you. Talk to them. Getcloser to the people you love in times of transition.
BIG AHA! When there is market upheaval, economic uncertainty, ormerger, people tend to look inward and ask themselves, “Is my jobsafe?” and take the appropriate steps to play internal politics orwaste their day(s) making sure all is well. The biggest vulnerabilityin uncertain times is NOT your job — it’s your customers. They are therevenue source that will ultimately provide your job security. Don’tguard your job — guard your customers. Serve them memorably. Sell themmore. Keep them loyal. And earn referrals from them.
If you want “change insurance” or “change assurance,” it does not comefrom your boss. It comes from your customers. Guard them with your life.
I have a list of ideas that will give you a few more action steps tohelp you cope and thrive. Go to www.gitomer.com, register if you’re afirst-time visitor, and enter the word CHANGE in the GitBit box.