Leadership: 5 Keys to Succeeding With Leaders Who Crave Change

Time after time we read how people hate change. Yet there is a small percentage who love change to the point of craving it. Have you ever met one? Have you ever worked for one?

If you work for leaders who crave change and you are not one, you are probably very aware of how you feel. Some compare it to being on a runaway roller coaster or constantly playing musical chairs. But do you know what feelings drive these strong change agents?

Succeeding with leaders who crave change is easier when you can see inside their mind.



Those Who Crave Change: Image is roller coaster.

5 Keys to Succeeding w/Leaders Who Crave Change. Image by:dougww

Image by Dougww via Flickr Creative Commons License.



The Feelings of Leaders Who Crave Change

  • The Better Unknown. While the status quote comforts you, discontent churns inside those who crave change. They have an inner sense that things could be better so why stay the same? To deal with this, ask them for specifics. What are they picturing?

  • Status Quo Doesn’t Really Exist. Those who crave change see everything changing around them and believe that there is no such thing as standing still. They see what is changing when others don’t. They feel awake and living IN the change and see inaction as risky. To deal with this, ask them what they see that you don’t.

  • Change Is Exciting. Those who crave change believe that everything is exciting in the beginning then the glow of energy fades. They don’t understand why anyone would stand in the fading shadows when they could be part of the exciting energy.

  • Find The Treasure. Many who crave change wonder what gems are hidden in the future. They believe it’s worth exploring even with whatever trouble lies ahead. They are conceptual treasure hunters. To deal with this, ask them how you can all deal with the trouble that may arise.

  • Dig Out of the Rut. Those who crave change see the status quo as a breeding ground for apathy. What feels like comfort to you seems like malaise to them. They want to dig out of the rut and feel frustrated with others who don’t. To deal with this, explain that you need time to process and implement the change. It doesn’t always mean you are apathetic, dragging, and lagging.


When emotions of change leaders are opposite to those they lead, stress increases in the gap. Communicating about the opposing emotions brings everyone to a tangible plan on how to manage the pace of change.

It won’t stop the changes (as you may be hoping) but it will allow you and the leaders to discuss a balance of everyone’s needs without sacrificing the success of the organization.



What is change to you?

An exciting treasure hunt?

A valuable nuisance?

The beginning of the end?



The diverse answers to this question paint a canvas of the struggles of organizational change.

From my professional experience to your success,
Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™

Related Posts:
Overcome Your Change Resistance: Replace These 5 Crippling Fears
Change Accelerator: Agility & Consistency Are Not Enemies

©2012-2016 Kate Nasser, CAS, Inc. Somerville, NJ. I appreciate your sharing the link to this post on your social streams. However, if you want to re-post or republish the content of this post, please email info@katenasser.com for permission and guidelines. Thank you for respecting intellectual capital.


Kate Nasser, The People Skills Coach™, delivers coaching, consulting, training, and keynotes on leading change, employee engagement, teamwork, and delivering the ultimate customer service. She turns interaction obstacles into interpersonal success. See this site for workshop outlines, keynote footage, and customer results.



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12 Responses to “Leadership: 5 Keys to Succeeding With Leaders Who Crave Change”

  1. Khalid says:

    Hi Kate,

    Another wonderful topic!

    What change to me! Internally, I don’t like change much but I love the adventure and that what makes me change! I try to push myself to try something different and enjoying the jurney of change.

    Now going back to your point where it said that only few Crave for change. Don’t you think staff workin with such leaders will always have confict?

    Regards,
    Khalid

    • Kate Nasser says:

      Great question Khalid. I do think that the employees of high change leaders have a tremendous struggle. In tomorrow’s post, I have some additional tips for leaders to prevent change fatigue.

      Hope you will add your thoughts to that post as well to deepen this discussion even further.

      Warmest thanks for your contribution here.
      Kate

  2. Yes, this is very good, Kate. Often a change leader has had more time to see, think about, and make plans for a needed/desired change. The leader has personally already gone through the adaptation steps — and is READY, maybe even in a state of high excitement about the possibilities! As a consequence others are in catch-up mode (perpetual catch-up mode if there are many changes coming) and then it feels like being dragged by a horse. The leader’s impatience creates resistance, and in turn the resistance creates more impatience. Your suggestion is perfect: talk about it, recognizing that a balance is necessary.

    I think its just a very smart skill for all of us these days to notice our reactions to change and not get caught up in our fears, particularly fears of some kind of loss. My advice to anyone experiencing a lot of push for change is “keep your head on.” Don’t fall into the paranoid trap of taking things too personally, feeling targeted or victimized. Instead notice what’s happening to you and to others, speak up, and work toward collaboration that dissolves the barriers between people in all directions, up, down, and sideways.

    For me, personally, as much as I like personal growth, I don’t always like forced change, and can “catastrophize” it, adding a lot of “what might be’s” and negative possibilities. When I look directly at these anxieties, however, and can see through their fantasy side (usually driven by some form of ambiguity), I’m better able to see what the change really is all about — and get on with it.

    Thanks, Kate!

    • Kate Nasser says:

      Dan,
      What a great tip for all — to avoid taking the push for change at work too personally. “Keep your head on” to avoid catastrophe is simple, clear, advice that I think comes from both your head and your heart.

      I will have a few tips for leaders to prevent change fatigue in my next post due to publish tomorrow.

      Many thanks for your wonderful advice.

      Best regards and thanks,
      Kate

  3. Kate:
    You’re post has done a great job expressing the thoughts and emotions associated with change agents and leaders thriving and craving change.

    Dan makes great points. I think most of us would be better equipped to handle change (well, at least me) when I know the why’s and how’s driving the change.

    Hopefully as we move forward, we’ll see leaders being more open and dare I say transparent about changes they see the need or desire to make!

    Thanks for sharing!

    Hannah

    • Kate Nasser says:

      Many thanks Hannah — for your contribution to this discussion. When change gets so erratic and random, it becomes a demotivator that crushes all. When it is, as you say, transparent, and paced, then people can work through their discomfort and engage.

      So pleased to have your comments and hope you will visit here again on Smart SenseAbilities(tm).

      Warmest regards,
      Kate

  4. Jon Mertz says:

    A great question,Kate. Change to me is a season change. They always happen and change our attitude (and perspective), whether it is to refresh, rethink, or rest. For me, change is not only necessary but exciting; it about growth and being a better person, a better leader to do better things.

    Thanks!

    Jon

    • Kate Nasser says:

      Jon,
      A season change – what a tremendous image.

      It captures the reality that:

      1. Change happens all the time
      2. Some old ways perish and new things come to life
      3. There is beauty even in tough times

      Your blog posts and your comments paint inspirational pictures for all.

      Many thanks,
      Kate

  5. Change is the beginning of the end…
    of the boring rut we often find ourselves in. Facing the end of what you are use to takes courage, therefore change is only for the courageous.

  6. Great post Kate!

    I am one of “those people” that crave change! Jon Mertz did a beautiful job of capturing my thoughts as well…. At least if I get to help create the change. Then it is necessary, exciting and natural.

    I will admit, however, that when life gives me unexpected or painful seasons of change I have to remind myself how much growth comes from change and work a little harder at embracing it.

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