Embrace Change

Embrace Change

EMBRACE CHANGE

Because the only thing permanent in life is change 

“To improve is to change; to be perfect is to change often.”

Winston Churchill

“If you do not change direction, you may end up where you are heading.”

Lao Tzu

“When we are no longer able to change a situation – we are challenged to change ourselves.”

Victor F. Frankl

A Covid Case Study 

Bob Iger Thought He Was Going to Retire on Top.

Now, He’s Fighting for Disney’s Life.

The former Disney C.E.O. thought he was riding into the sunset. Now he’s reasserting control and reimagining Disney as a company with fewer employees and more thermometers (to take people’s temperatures before entering).

The shift from on-screen entertainment into in-person experiences helped Disney become the biggest media company in the world, but has been impossible to protect from this pandemic. The company’s largest division brought in more than $26 billion in the year ending last June by extending its brands to cruise ships and theme parks.

Those are all shuttered now. It has three new cruise ships under construction in Germany, their futures unclear. The jewel in its second-largest division television is ESPN which, in a sports-less world, is now broadcasting athletes playing video games. The third group studios were expected to bring in most of their revenue this year from movies opening in theaters, which are now closed.

Mr. Iger is now intensely focused on remaking a company that will emerge, he believes, deeply changed by this crisis. The sketch he has drawn for associates offers a glimpse at the post-pandemic future: It’s a Disney with fewer employees leading the new and uncertain business of how to gather people safely for entertainment.

(The New York Times, April 12, 2020, Ben Smith)

 

Expect Change

Construction professionals: Let’s take inspiration from this type of response because it is starting to seem like the world will never be the same, or you can wish, that given enough time, your industry will come back exactly the same as it was before all this happened. Unlikely.

  • The first step for construction industry management is to recognize that dramatic change in your environment has already happened, and your company must change in response.
  • Wasting time, either denying change or wishing it hadn’t happened or thinking it’s not real and will go away soon, is magical thinking that Bob Iger knew he couldn’t afford and, I submit, you can’t either.
  • The key question is whether your company will be forced to change against your will and wishes or whether you will initiate productive and positive changes in your company in response to the changes in the environment that you work in? Not only has change already occurred, it is continuing to evolve.
  • The genius of the CEO of Disney was that he accepted the radical change in his company’s environment and jumped to take control of the change.

Accept Change

  • It is time to accept what has happened and work tirelessly to positively reinvent your company.
  • See this time of crisis as an opportunity to improve your company’s operating methodology, competitive position, employee relations and client interactions.
  • Ignore the feeling that you are being forced to make these changes and see your actions as positive improvements that should have happened anyway.
  • Involve your key people from day one.
  • And while you are at it, be optimistic about the future of your renewed organization.

“The pessimist sees difficulty in every opportunity. The optimist sees opportunity in every difficulty.” – Winston Churchill

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