Thursday, October 11, 2007

Walking's easy when the road is flat

Listening to the lyrics of a Lonestar song recently I came across these words;

‘Walking’s easy when the road is flat … The good lord gave us mountains so we can learn how to climb’

Now I’m pretty sure when the song writers put together those few words they didn't expect people like me would be using the words in a management context.

It seems to me Lonestar have said something quite simple and yet profound about the job of managers introducing change. When everything in the garden is rosy and life is good in the business we are walking along a flat road.

When change is required we are confronted by hills that stretch us a bit or mountains that mean we have to work really hard to climb them to implement our latest idea that requires change.

No one ever said change is easy. If we always see the road ahead as flat then we are really kidding ourselves. As a manager there are always mountains to climb as and continuing the analogy, how wonderful it is when you climb a mountain and reach the top. Quite often the new panorama looks refreshingly different than the old one.

Cynics will say a lot of people don’t reach the top of mountains and that is true – we lose some people on our journey.

Cynics will also say if you are at the top of a mountain the only way is down.

I am an eternal optimist so I'll just try and remember Lonestar’s words the next time I am confronted with a difficult change to manage or be a part of.

‘Walking’s easy when the road is flat’ … good managers will train for the inclines and mountains … we need to be in good shape for the inevitable challenges.

Just some reflective Thursday musings …


Dmitry Linkov said...

Nice one Trevor. What I think is, when you are on the top - just look for a higher mountain to climb ;).

Best regards to you and Annie!

Trevor Gay said...

I agree Dmitry - My late Dad told me the time we are most vulnerable is when things are going well - that is the time we can become complacent.

When Manchester United won the treble in 1999 – a feat never done before or since – Sir Alex Ferguson the Manager said ‘This team needs to improve.’

We are both well - hope things are ok with you too - how is the weather in Moscow?