So change agents are some of the most sought after...yet most abhorrent individuals on this planet.
We all recognize that things can be better, and on one hand, we want someone to come and help us make it so...a change agent!
However, change is painful and frequently results in unintended and unwanted consequences, and so on the other hand, we hate change agents.
Many change agents may not just change things that need to get changed and fixed, but they may change a lot of things that were working just fine before, thank you.
Can anyone say reorganization?
Moreover, change agents may not be changing things for the right reasons like the good of the organization.
Instead they may be self promoters, control freaks who have to do things their way, or they may be serial job hunters--next stop change everything and get the heck out of Dodge!
Change agents may work with people to get requirements, input, and vet the issues and the solutions or they may just be paying lip service to others, only to really shove their or someone else's agenda down your throats.
You see there is healthy change that is based on genuine learning, growth, and maturity, and then there is change that is destructive, diabolical, and selfish.
When you decide to change something, what's your motivation and your goal--is it to right the wrongs in the organization, reengineer business processes, and introduce new technologies or is it to change for change's sake alone.
Yes, we did something. Check the box. Tell the management committee. We earned our keep and oh yeah, then some. We changed something, anything. Hip Hip Hooray. Bonus time!
So either you'll get an award and promotion or you'll get asked accusingly and threateningly, "Who told you to change that?!"
Change which has no real support or merit is dead on arrival (DOA), and will be gone, gone, gone long after the change agent is gone.
So don't freak out--the b.s. changes are either going to kill the organization or simply end up in Fresh Kills landfill.
The real changes may actually make you stronger. ;-)
(Source Photo: Andy Blumenthal)