Only a year into my young career, I decided to make my first professional leap. For some context, this was only 39 days ago, but who’s counting? I left behind the organization that brought me into TE Connectivity to take a chance on a new role in the corporate office. Leaving my comfort zone of colleagues, established mentors and a place of certainty didn’t come without reservation. This was a team that gave me so much in the first year of my career. Would I be better off if I stayed? Would I realize the grass wasn’t greener on the other side? What if my new colleagues weren’t as approachable, accepting or encouraging?
The bottom line is that change is hard. Our minds tend to challenge even some of the best decisions we make in our professional and personal lives. Ironically enough, my new position was in a Human Resources change management role. My new focus would be aiding the organization and its employees through difficult change and new landscapes, and in order to get there, I had to sail through a sea of change myself.
Even in these first few weeks of my new endeavor, I’ve learned a lot about change. Perhaps most importantly, I’ve learned that change is difficult for people psychologically because anything that takes us outside of our comfort zone or challenges the status quo, immediately puts us on the defense. This seems logical enough, but when we’re in the midst of change in our own lives, emotions often overtake logic. Therefore, tactics emerge to help us make difficult and trying decisions. One of my personal favorites are pros and cons lists. They seem simple in nature but techniques like these serve a deeper purpose. They help us see past our emotions or instincts and make logical, well-thought-out decisions. And for me, the pros far outweighed the cons of taking this new job.
That being said, packing up your desk and marching confidently into unchartered waters isn’t easy for all but the most highly-evolved change masters amongst us. My mind continued to question: Could I do this new job well? Would I be successful here? What if this new team did not support my long term goals? However, I found that the expectations I’d created in my own mind did not align with reality. This was indeed a good move for me. My new team has been wonderful, I love the content of my work and I’m learning quickly. Of course, I missed the relationships I’d established with my former team, but many of my fears, hesitations and self-doubts were never realized.
As I look to alleviate and massage the impact of organizational change in my new role at TE Connectivity, I know I’ll keep this experience with me. On a large scale, resistance to change in an organization closely mimics what we might go through on a personal level. At first emotions, doubt and uncertainty will likely take over, but ultimately if the change is for the better, it will be well-received, accepted and people will adapt. One of my favorite sayings comes from Amy Cuddy’s TED Talk on body language: “Fake it until you become it.” We all have the power to embrace change with grace and fortitude. The more open we are to change and the more we let the new flood into our lives and let go of the old, the faster we can thrive in a new landscape.