Remember? You started that new job. You were full of enthusiasm. Your curiosity was insatiable. And, your drive led you to overcome seemingly incredible hurdles. At the same time, you likely had periods of uncertainty, risk was everywhere, yet the exhilaration was almost like a narcotic.
Now, the clock has rolled forward a few years. Your curiosity has waned. You know where all the road’s bumps are, so hurdles aren’t quite so high any more. And, yesterday’s exhilaration has atrophied and become today’s ‘comfort.’
Your pay is likely comfortably high now. Risks are as low as they’ll ever get. And comfort is something you’re accustomed to as knowing your car will start at day’s end.
What a great life! You’ve arrived! Maybe you should Leave now, too!
Even given all the change many have seen in recent years, there are still a great number of people, both individual contributors and leaders, for which there’s been little or no change. You likely recognize yourself if, your job has not specifically changed, even though there are fewer people on your team, more’s expected of you, and your health benefits cost more. But, it’s basically the same old job you’ve come to know and love.
What happens if you need to change jobs? Perhaps it’s just an internal change. You go from a winning product team, to one that’s struggling, has few resources, and fewer team members. Could you handle it? Really? What if ‘change’ does finally knock on your door and you have to go find a new home altogether? Can you handle it?
Here’s the problem…
We work hard to achieve a level of comfort in our lives. When that comfort becomes too well-established, we begin to lose the very skills that will make us successful at our next stations in life. If you have not been required to think, create, or interrelate (or…) in new ways for some time now, just how flexible, how rusty, will you be in a new role?
Taking on a new role today may be a very rude awakening for you. Perhaps making a meaningful change on your own terms is a better idea than having it forced upon you at an inopportune time? You already know it: Today’s world of global competition at almost every level, in almost every industry, is moving at a rocket’s pace. Can you afford to have gotten stiff and inflexible?
(photo credit: Karl-Erik Bennion)