Facing Change – Knowing the Why is Everything
“Not everything that is faced can be changed, but nothing can be changed until it is faced.”
— James Baldwin
We all knew why when we had a reduction in force at Charles Schwab. We all knew why because the leaders opened a dialog about the needed Change. They talked to all of us, listened to all of us, and helped us all face the inevitable.
Well, not everyone was able to face the Change – Larry struggled. But we all know a ‘Larry.’ But in defense of Larry, he chose to opt out once he had the rationale – and that is perfectly ok.
Anyhow, it’s 100% clear that James Baldwin wasn’t talking about Digital Transformation or Change Management. He wasn’t speaking about things that are so trivial. No, he talked about race in America and the Change required for equality.
But Change on any level requires the same elements. So as we confront Change in our work and personal lives – we must face the needed Change. And we must know why we need to change. If you don’t know why the Change is necessary, it will not be something you will own. And you certainly can’t lead others through it.
We are constantly facing the need to change inside and outside of work. But, to effectively change, we must start and accept the why. That step is critical to change. That step is James Baldwin’s “….nothing can be changed until it is faced” step.
Real Change starts with facing it.
Leading Change starts with owning it.
References and Resources
Confronting History: James Baldwin
James Baldwin on Black Experience in America
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