The last part of this series will focus on making the move – actually engaging the change.
If, after assessment, change is still needed, take action- make the move.
Now, this is gut-check time.
There are a million reasons not to lead change: Change is not popular. It will get you criticized. It is easier just to stay the same. They may even want to kill you (refer to Moses in Exodus 17:4).
There is never the perfect time for change. Sometimes, we get stuck in the process of evaluations – to the point that we freeze. I like the little phrase – “the paralysis of analysis”. Don’t try to wait for the perfect time. Ecclesiastes 11:4 says, “Farmers who wait for perfect weather never plant. If they watch every cloud, they never harvest.” (NLT) Let’s not get stuck doing nothing and blowing our greatest opportunities. As John Greenleaf Whittier said, “For all sad words of tongue and pen, the saddest are these, ‘It might have been’.”
Leaders lead. And many times, change is exactly what needs to happen. A leader that is afraid to shake things up won’t last long in leadership. You have to be strong and be able to withstand opposition. And another consideration – you have to be in it for the long haul. It is completely unfair for a leader to change course and (sorry for the mixed metaphors), jump ship. If you don’t plan to hang around, don’t mess things up for those who are sticking around and for your replacement.
I have yet to mention a very important aspect of impacting transition – consensus. If you are smart, you’ll be sure that you are not alone in your quest for change. Good leaders don’t lead by popular opinion, and God’s kingdom is not a democracy but you’d better be sure the key people and the influencers are on board with you. These people need to be the kind that will run through a wall with you.
So, you are in charge of something, are you? Well, you’d better be ready to bring change. Slow, strategic, deliberate change. If done properly, the result will be worth the pain.
So a quick departing recap:
#1 Identify the need/problem – what’s wrong with this picture?
#2 Set the vision – where do we want to go?
#3 Answer: Is it worth it? – am I willing to pay the price?
#4 Change! Just do it!
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Grace to all!