The M&M’s of Change

I recently gave a talk at the Montclair Chamber of Commerce’s monthly breakfast titled the M&M’s of Change.  I started with this question “How do you handle change?”  Our answer to this question can be summed up in two perspectives; we can either meander through it or we can maneuver our way through.

Those are two very different approaches and the results will have lasting effects. The difference is this, meandering will get you somewhere you didn’t intend to be.  We are ping ponged around like a pachinko or pinball machine hoping to score points as we go.  Maneuvering however, requires active participation, constantly readjusting our trajectory in order to reach our predetermined goal.

In order to maneuver you need to have a goal or a north star, something that is stationary (or outside of your situation) to guide you through the storm.  I recently read a history of Mexico which discussed the Spanish empire and the amount of ships that went back and forth between Spain and the new empire.  I realized that they transversed the Atlantic on a regular basis quite easily and accurately visiting their ports of call…all without modern GPS systems.  How?  By setting their course with the stars and adjusting accordingly when blown off course.

The point is that you need something that is outside of your current realm of influence, outside of your current situation that doesn’t change that keeps you on track. 

In today’s “new normal” change, it seems is a part of the new equation.  It is something to be planned for not avoided. If change is going to be a greater influence on our daily lives, it is something that should be planned for or at least calculated in our organizational and individual planning.

The point is, in a world of change our mindset determines our ultimate destination.  You can meander through and let the circumstances determine your direction or plan to maneuver and have greater control over where you are going. The choice is yours.