Pursuing Change

(an excerpt for Cheetah’s PMP Career Builder)


What is the first thing that comes to mind when you hear the word “change”? For many of us, words like “anxious”, “overwhelmed”, or “unknown” pop into our head. Sometimes change feels like we are heading into a storm of unknown risks and consequences.

To thrive as a PM executive, we must learn to not only embrace change, but to pursue it and learn to capitalize on it. Here are the top five strategies that you can use to help you to let go of your fears and pursue change with abandon:

  1. Love UncertaintiesI am a risk-taker, and some even consider me to be a daredevil (while driving around on my Harley, I sometimes feel like one).   And while I love uncertainty, I make sure I’m prepared for the risks that I may encounter. Life is filled with uncertainties. Time and time again, I discover, much to my delight, that the riskier the situation, the more uncertainties there are, and the greater the rewards.
  2. Accept your Internal Strength to Weather Change. One of the biggest reasons why people fear change is because they think, “Maybe I can’t handle this new situation.”  The reality is that human beings are pretty darn adaptable.   If you’ve ever jumped into a pool of really cold water, you probably felt a terrible shock at first. Then, as you swam around, the temperature began to feel invigorating and it turned into a great experience – one that proved your internal strength. The pool water did not change – you became accustomed to the temperature. Instead of resisting these types of experiences, try to find every “cold pool” (figuratively speaking) within your reach, and dive in.
  3. Tackle Tiny Fears. If you have a strong change-fear connection, here is an easy way to start to reprogram your mind for a different response pattern:  Each day, do something small that frightens you just a bit. By tackling these small fears, you will realize that the thought of the action itself is more fearful and stressful than the actual action.
  4. Communicate Through Change. We tend to fear what we don’t understand. If you are the one initiating a change, make sure to communicate the purpose of the change to all stakeholders, and get their buy-in.
  5. Stay Positive. When considering whether or not to pursue change and the subsequent unknown outcome, we are faced with a risk that this outcome might be bad. What we often overlook is that the outcome may very well be an improved condition over the previous state from before the change. Being positive will not only help ease your fears, but will also help a positive outcome actually occur as it will free you from “fear paralysis” and will help you to pursue positive change.

Project Management Executives – pursue change in your life today! Whether it is in your personal or professional realm, you can make great waves when you are one of the few people that not only accepts change, but proactively pursues change to create better outcomes for everyone.  “Business as usual” has never produced greatness. Push the boundaries of what is possible, and discover true greatness when you actively pursue change.

Stay tuned next week when will talk about a Senior Project Executive Certificate Program that will distinguish you from your peers.

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