Transition and Transformation
Recently I spoke to a group of professionals who are in career transition.
One entrepreneur was there by choice; he left his last position because it was the right thing to do. Most were forced into the search; the economy.
Transition and transformation are twin concepts in leadership development.
As we hang the 2011 calendar, Next Level Executive Coaching, LLC celebrates three years of developing people.
According to Business.gov this is a significant accomplishment.
…most new businesses don’t survive past the first two years, government data show(s) that seven out of 10 new employer firms last at least two years, with only half surviving for five years.
Statistics aside, there is no doubt that steering a fledgling business venture through the startup phase and the immediate years that follow is likely to be a huge test of entrepreneurial character.
Yes, mine was a “forced transition” (2008 Budget cuts) that came my way Friday afternoon, August 31, 2007. That jolt led me to launch my coaching practice in January, 2008. While a surprise at the time, I am grateful today. Thank you!
Who wants to change?
Transition is about change. It’s that process or time period when something in your world changes; it’s moving from one stage, state, form, or activity to another.
How does the thought of transition affect you?
What transition are you currently experiencing?
Transitions are inherently accompanied by pain. Yes, pain enlarges our desire to learn and change…helping us embrace growth opportunities. A transition is about something changing in our world.
Personal growth and leadership development are transitional in nature and often initiated by pain. Usually it takes a jolt to get us unstuck. Do you remember?
What about transformation?
As I wrote at the beginning of this article, transition and transformation are twin concepts in leadership development.
While transitions are about the process of change, transformation speaks not only to process but the “completed change”…usually an improvement.
The L. A. Times published a recent article on Patrick House. His story is graduate level transition and transformation.
Patrick House came to “The Biggest Loser” ranch in worse shape than most contestants.
He was obese, to be sure: He carried 400 pounds on his 6’2.” But Patrick was also unemployed after losing his job as a sales rep. He was deeply in debt. He had a junker of a car. And he was also depressed, wondering how he would care for his wife and their two young boys. His situation was so dire that even his teammates rallied to help him. During one of the most poignant moments of the season, Ada and Brendan were the front-runners in a challenge to win a new Ford Edge. Instead of duking it out, they conspired to step aside so that Patrick could walk away with the vehicle instead.
On Tuesday, Patrick effectively won “The Biggest Loser” lottery, taking home a $250,000 payday after losing 181 pounds, or 45.25% of his body weight, and the Season 10 title. He’ll use the money to settle debts and put his family on solid financial ground. Even better: He starts a new job in January. He’ll help run an academy that will help obese children tackle their weight issues.
“It means everything to us,” a jubilant yet-teary-eyed Patrick said of the win. “It means we can start over.” (emphasis added)
What was that about?
Transitions may not always come as a “start over” but they are often a “fresh start”. Isn’t that the nature of life? I love how the cycle of time speaks to all the fresh starts available on the journey.
Anyone reading this blog has experienced a new century; that’s once-in-a-lifetime. But think about it, a fresh start can come as a new decade, a new year, a new month, a new day, this afternoon, tonight, this hour, the next 10 minutes, the next minute, your next breath.
Life is about the journey and the journey is about transition and transformation; how living in the moment allows us to transition from where we are to our next level: mind, body, and spirit.
When we desire transformation in life we can count on a transition catalyst.
To repeat myself: a transition catalyst comes our way to enlarge our desire for transformation.
Why is this tricky??
For most of us, it comes down to whether we recognize the stimulus or not. When the transition catalyst comes how do you respond?
Quick Exercise - Which response do you typically give to a “transition catalyst” (growth opportunity)?
- Blame – placing the responsibility on someone else
- Denial – refusing to acknowledge the truth or reality
- Rationalization – making excuses for your performance
- Minimization – underestimating, intentionally – “It’s no big deal”
- Avoidance – withdrawing from or avoiding the reality of the situation
As you transition to 2011 what is changing in your world?
Where do you recognize a need to experience transformation as a leader?
What does that look like? How will you get there?
What support do you have? Who will help you make the journey?
Who could you forward this to today?
What if you post a comment and engage in the conversation?
I’d love to hear your voice.