Adapt To Continuous Change
Randy Wolken, President & CEO
The world around us is constantly changing. And the world is changing faster and faster each day. Do you have a strategy for your accelerated, changing world? If not, now is the time to develop one.
This is not a new phenomenon, but it is faster than ever. The last half-century has moved at an accelerated pace. We must notice that acceleration is radically different than just speed. Here is a helpful way to think about it. When driving in a car, we tend to accelerate to our desired speed and then steady that speed. We may slow down and speed up again. We may even stop entirely for a while. However, when it comes to change around us, it is constantly accelerating. It never stops or slows down! Imagine a car ride where the speed continuously increases with each passing moment. This is how change is occurring in our world today.
As humans, constant acceleration challenges us. It distorts our sense of stability. We are used to all forms of movement – including being stopped and resting. However, the world around us never stops when it comes to accelerated change. When we sleep, the other side of the world changes. When they sleep, we are involved in accelerated change. It is never-ending. This is our global dynamic, and it can be challenging to adapt our way of living to what is occurring.
Another way to look at our world today is to see it as a fast-flowing river. Once you step into a river or stream, you will never step into that same river or stream again. It may look similar, but the water flowing around your feet is not the same as it was the last time you stepped into it. Our lives are similar. When we got up today to begin our work, the world had changed for us. It seems to be the same, but it is most certainly not. Also, something else has changed – you.
You are not the same person you were yesterday. You have experienced more of the world you live in. Although they may be similar, they are not the same. Each day is a time of change for us if we let it be. Each day is a new day of learning and contributing to what matters to us. As our world has continued to change, so must we.
You and I need a strategy for adapting to accelerated change. When we accept this challenge, we live our life differently. That way, when we step into the river – or our lives – today, we have also changed. We can now experience this new day with all its opportunities and challenges. This can be exciting. Without change, we will be unprepared to thrive.
Step one of any newness involves realizing we must accept the new paradigm. We must learn to love change so that it becomes the passion that propels us forward while helping us develop a strategy for success. I have been President & CEO of MACNY for 21 years. However, no day has ever been the same. And, to stay relevant and valuable, I have also needed to be different each day. For all of us, the amount of change is accelerated. Today, and every day forward, we must learn to live an accelerated life. This is why I have adopted the Present-Future Leader paradigm. Which is the title of my book written in 2018 that still rings true today. I am convinced I must live in the present while leading toward a successful future. To do so, I must continually change faster than ever.
Every individual and leader must adopt an accelerated change mentality. When we do so, we give ourselves and our organizations the best opportunity to thrive in our fast-paced global economy. In addition, this way of living will aid us immensely in the changes coming to our communities in the years ahead.