Rob Powell talks about adapting to change at the business chamber Lunch and Learn.
The Emery County Business Chamber held their last Lunch and Learn for 2012 in Ferron at the Ferron City Hall. Rob Powell was the guest speaker. He spoke about adapting to change in the workplace.
Powell said, "Change is inevitable, change is going to happen whether we ask for it or not. We are creatures of habit, we form comfort zones and live there.
"There are three major obstacles to change, if people say, 'this is the way I have always done things, or 'that's just me.' Fear is also a major factor fear of the unknown or anticipated unknown. Some people do not know how to change.
"We sometimes allow the good things in life to get in the way of the great things in life. The easier it is to be good, the more difficult it is to be great. Great customer service is about ordinary people doing ordinary things extraordinarily well.
"Daniel Goleman, said, 'We are being judged by a new yardstick, not by our training and expertise, but also how well we handle ourselves and each other.'
Powell said sometimes people try to avoid change at all costs and that causes issues by avoiding change. "Whenever we went out to dinner with my dad, we could go anywhere we wanted as long as it was China City. Whenever he cooked something for dinner, it was always lasagna. He hated change. He was comfortable with what he did. In business we tend to get comfortable.
"In my class, everyone will come in and pick a chair, if a student shows up that wasn't there the first day and sits in someone else's seat, that student will come in and see their chair is taken and will have to find a new seat they look confused and will then make the adjustment.
"We are judged on how well we handle ourselves. New technology changes so quickly. It's hard keeping up with those changes. My wife loves Bon Jovi, he has been successful and had hits in four different decades. He said the secret to success is to figure out how to change everything about yourself without changing anything.
Businesses have rich traditions, they have things that make it unique and we resist change, we are stuck in ruts and sometimes stuck in the past.
"My grandfather used to have me mow his lawn every week. He was very particular and insisted I use his old push mower. He was convinced that the new mowers didn't work right.
"As I consult with employers, they always say, this is the way we've always done it. We need to create a new awareness. People are stuck. Change requires adjusting fear. Fear is necessary and it keeps us safe, but it also keeps us from advancing. We get anticipatory fear. Fears tell lies. It has elements that aren't true. I have a story about my wife. She is a wonderful wife and mother, she played college ball, she has a degree in psychology. She has a funny fear of spiders. She was watching TV and they were talking about the African Monkey spider. It was huge. It said this spider could jump 20 feet from a dead standstill. My wife had a funny look on her face.
"One day I was doing homework and my wife came by carrying the cleaning supplies. Then I heard a scream from the bathroom. I ran in to see what was going on and my wife had jumped into the bathtub. There was a little spider on the mirror. I captured and released it in the yard. Then I asked my wife what the deal was and she said well you saw that show that said spiders can jump 20 feet? She had generated fear for that spider and in reality regular spiders can't jump 20 feet.
"If we have a bad experience with change, then we resist change.
"We run from it. We sometimes think we have to know it all and we don't. We can make mistakes. We should always look our best and do our best, that's important, but one of the concepts of learning is that we will make learning errors.
"When toddlers learn to eat they have errors, when they learn to walk they fall down. There is a trial and error period when learning new things. You might do it wrong, while you are learning to do it right.
"You need a plan. When you implement a plan you are going to have some errors, allow for that while you adopt change. People saying, 'I didn't know, will only work for a little while. In business you need to learn and adjust quickly. Adapt and learn as soon as possible.
"Obstacles stand in our way. We get in a comfort zone and can't get out and we can't reach our full potential while stuck in a comfort zone. If you get comfortable, you won't make the efforts to become great.
"Chemistry was hard for me. I would bring a pop and a candy bar for my teacher and would receive extra points. That's how I got two years of good grades in chemistry. But, no college professor would let me do that. That kept me from being great.
"I taught a customer service class at Pinnacle High. One thing we discovered was what helps you to adapt to change is to stay with it, don't quit.
"Change, but remain true to yourself. Do ordinary things, extra-ordinarily well," encouraged Powell.
Emery County Business Chamber
January Lunch and Learn
January 16, at noon
The January lunch and learn will be held at the Museum of the San Rafael in Castle Dale. Guest speaker is Principal Larry Davis. He will speak on the importance of donations by Local businesses to support the schools and their programs. Local business spotlight will be Dallen Skelley of Beehive homes.