4 Ways Businesses Could Benefit From A Flexible Mindset When It Comes To Change
What’s the first thing that comes to mind when you think about change? Would it surprise you to know that most people associate change with loss?
When we shift our mindset and attitude to change in the workplace we can create a huge competitive advantage; research shows that the best performing companies know how to cope with and take advantage of change.
Elevate Talent develops the female talent pipeline, ensuring that there’s equal opportunity for women to thrive and reach their full career potential, and we recognise that to do this well there’s a need to embrace change.
In this article we’re going to look at four main areas that will help us to approach change with confidence:
- Change doesn’t mean loss
- How to reframe your reaction
- Adopt a flexible mindset
- Consider the finish line
Change doesn’t mean loss
I saw a wonderful demonstration of how easy it is to link change and loss at an in-person event with Gavin Scott, an experienced corporate trainer and a regular co-presenter at Elevate Talent. He asked people to pair up and stand back to back. Then he asked them to change something about themselves.
Nine times out of ten people removed an item of clothing. They took off a scarf, tie, or a piece of jewellery. Occasionally, someone moved their watch to the other wrist, but 90% of the time change was demonstrated by removing something. Gavin, instead, would make his change by picking up a red pen. It was rare that anybody noticed (what Gavin was highlighting here was that most people associate the idea of change with loss).
If we can start to look for the silver lining and adopt a flexible mindset around change we learn to cope better and take advantage of new opportunities.
How to reframe your reaction
When I talk to people about the reactions that come up around change the main ones include:
Change is so often perceived as something negative happening to us. What would happen if we reframed that response?
We can do a full 180 degree turn by asking what’s the opportunity here? When we view change as opportunity (rather than loss) we start to get excited, and with that excitement comes a chance to do something different.
Adopt a flexible mindset
Change is inevitable; it’s the only constant. It will happen whether you fight it or not. Charles Darwin (theory of evolution) stated that it’s not the strongest nor most intelligent species that will survive, it is the one most adaptable to change.
Feeling negative towards change limits opportunity and creates fear, and as a result, progress becomes a challenge.
At Elevate Talent creating more career opportunities for women at that mid level position doesn’t mean depriving the male employees, or anyone else of what they already have. We want everyone to thrive, and that can only happen if everyone is thriving.
Increasing female representation
Sometimes, people can see the targeted approach to ensure better female representation as a lost opportunity for them, whereas it’s actually an opportunity for everyone to benefit from new ideas, more creativity, better returns, and more stability.
It’s not just about helping women, it’s about helping everyone by creating an equal opportunity for all talent to progress.
Swiss multinational investment bank UBS recently launched a portfolio that invests solely in hedge funds led by women to improve diversity and uncover hidden talent in the sector. It aims to pick 10-15 funds globally where a woman has sole or joint discretion over the investment of the assets.
This is a great opportunity that would have been unheard of five years ago, but now there is recognition that there is female talent in the industry and a fantastic opportunity for change. Nobody is losing out.
The finish line
What if we viewed change as an easier and faster way to reach the finish line where we can all achieve more? How do we feel when we no longer perceive it as a threat or a loss?
How do you feel about change? Is it something that you resist or welcome? We’d love to hear if this article has helped you, and how you might approach change differently in the future; pop a comment in the box below or send us an email.