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Thursday, February 25, 2010

BEING THERE WHEN IT COUNTS: The Opportunity for Change

Being There When It Counts with Rick Itzkowich

Business writer and author of Change or Die, Alan Deutchman, writes in his article, Three Keys to Change (you can read it here), that even in "do or die" situations, fewer than 10% of the people facing them will make the necessary changes to survive.

I've been in the personal growth industry for over 25 years. I've worked with thousands of individuals during my career. And by far, change is one of the most difficult things for people to embrace. Big or small, it doesn't matter. People in general object to change.

Because our world is rapidly changing, people's opposition to change creates problems. The speed of change has increased exponentially, and there seems to be no signs of slowing down in sight. So our capacity to change - and to do so quickly -- is of paramount importance in today's business environment.

I'm convinced that people and organizations must reinvent themselves in order to thrive, let alone survive. What this means is that EVERYTHING should be up for discussion. There are no "sacred cows." The world is a different place with different realities -- ones that didn't even exist a few years ago. Whining, litigating, fighting or ignoring these realities won't help. We need to embrace this paradigm as opposed to resisting it.

Fact: the Internet has changed the way we do business. Fact: technology is making entire industries obsolete in a matter of months. Fact: how we shop, date, communicate, interact with our kids, etc. is incredibly different today than 10 years ago.

"When the facts change, I change my mind. What do you do, sir?"
John Maynard Keynes, British Economist

The past two years have been extremely challenging for our company. We knew we were vulnerable because many of our clients were in the finance, mortgage and real estate industries. We knew we needed to change some of our practices and diversify. And yet we didn't. And so, we paid the price.

Although I must say, as a result of this, we have finally started doing things differently -- more than we ever have before. We are pursuing opportunities we have both ignored and ridiculed in the past. These circumstances of change are both very exciting and very unsettling at the same time. People who have known us over our 18 years in business are wondering if we lost our minds. And to a certain degree we have. Fact: times have changed, and we have changed our minds.

How about you? Are you embracing, fighting or ignoring change?

This month's QuoteAction is by William Arthur Ward, Author of Fountains of Faith

"The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails."

Your action is to think of a problem or challenge you're facing. Ask yourself if you are approaching it in a pessimistic, optimistic or realistic frame of mind?

Enjoy an Extraordinary Month!

Click *here* to find out more about QuoteActions and some of the other innovative products and services offered by THE NATIONAL NETWORKER.

As the creator of the QuoteActions, a unique relationship building system, Rick Itzkowich finds his articles, podcasts and blog messages regarding keeping your brand "top of mind" in high demand. His latest eBook, Social Networking for Business Profits, uses cost-effective follow up strategies. Rick is also the Co-founder and Vice President of Productive Learning & Leisure, a personal development training company for corporations and individuals. Rick can be reached at

For more about Rick Itzkowich, please click here.


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Bill Doerr said...

Rick -- Right on!

There is a tendency, bordering on a genetic disposition, to maintain 'status quo'.

Problem is, as you've pointed out, change is so such a constant that if there is a 'status quo', it doesn't last very long.

"Change or Die". A bit blunt but honest comment. Thank you for bringing this up and sharing it here.

Bill Doerr, CCO
SellMore Marketing

Beth Sobiloff said...

Great article, Rick. Change is happening at the speed of light. Imagine what I'm dealing with as a web designer! Not only is the technology changing on a daily basis, but the economy has thrown a monkey wrench into the works. Not an easy environment for running a business, especially for a baby boomer. We either go with the flow, or wither on the vine.

Beth Sobiloff
BNI Assistant Director, SE Mass

Carroll said...

I agree with you both-- and I would like to point out that one reason the economy and the "gestalt" are so unsettled right now is we are still trying to solve new problems with old mindsets.

Take marketing. Everyone is always trying to sell me stuff I don't want for money I don't have-- and almost NEVER looking to be of service. (Rick excepted.) I am so sick of "marketing" I want to live in a cave. The TV is a lie machine. "Happy cows live in California". "Health care reform is socialism."

Similar lies.

Yes, we need to change. Now how?

Mdsisson said...

I totally agree. In the field of healthcare, our attachment to the status quo is literally killing us. The only way we can survive individually and collectively is to be (very) open to change - in our diets, our movement patterns and our reliance (or not) on medications.

Mark Storey Coach-Trainer said...

You're views about change are 'spot on,' Rick.

There are 3 things you can count on. Death; Taxes; and Change. Say your prayers; Pay your taxes; Prepare to change.

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