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  Category: Articles » Business » Management » Article

Life Before Downsizing: Six Secrets to Managing Change and Creating Opportunities for the Future

By Ed Sykes

What would you do if you learned your organization was bought by another organization, was downsizing, or closing its doors tomorrow? In 30 days? Six months? In one year? Are you prepared for the change? What will you do in the future?

In this ever changing world we live in, there is one constant...change. Changes are happening faster and faster. Even what is changing has a different look. Just think of the items in your life that were not available 20, 10, 5 years, or even one year ago. Just think of the iPod, cloning, DNA, etc. Why would we think our career situation will be the same in twenty years?

The same types of changes are happening in the workplace. This is no longer the world of working twenty years for the same company. Organizations are adapting to the local, national, and global marketplaces.

How do you prepare yourself for these changes? The following techniques will enable you to master career change and create opportunities for you:

    Create Goals
    Many times when you work for an organization for a long time, you may become complacent. Constantly develop your goals. Work on goals in the areas of career, family, education, fitness, health, and spirituality. This will create balance in your life and enable you master change when it comes.
    Cast Your NETS Now!
    N-E-T-S means Network with Everyone for Total Success! Go out and join various industry and non-industry groups. This is a great way to spread your NETS. Volunteer and be active with these groups so that your skills can be seen and your ideas heard. This is an opportunity to develop your leadership abilities and let others know about you as a person and the skills you have to offer. As I always say:

    "It's not what you know. It's not who you know. It's who knows what you know."

    Depending on the skills, you will be looked at as an expert. Cast your NETS and let others know what you know.
    Account for Your CPA
    C-P-A means Creating a Positive Attitude. Create a positive attitude toward your career and life so that you will not miss opportunities when they arrive. Look at challenging situations as opportunities that will prepare you for greater opportunities in the future. Realize that the projects you work on today will create new opportunities for you tomorrow.
    Seek Knowledge
    Continuously seek knowledge to stay ahead of the change curve. Many times when we work with employees in organizations, we let employees know about educational opportunities that enhance their careers and lives. Sometimes, we receive the following response:

    "If the company isn't going to pay for the class, then I am not going to take it."

    Folks, we gladly spend (spend as in purchasing something with decreasing value) money on cable TV, DVD's, etc. However, when it comes to investing in our education, we often say no.

    Keep in mind that once you receive your knowledge, its your knowledge, and you take it wherever you go. Additional knowledge gives you the confidence to meet challenges and embrace opportunities.

    Take the time to find out what benefits and educational opportunities your organization is offering and take advantage of them. Do it today.

    Seek knowledge and grow!
    Relax and Downsize Your Life
    Take the time to downsize your lifestyle. Often when we receive a raise, we buy a bigger car or house, buy additional items on credit, etc. That has become the norm in the "super size me" society. As the comedian George Carlin says, "We have become a slave to our stuff." Think of ways you could downsize your lifestyle if you were faced with a career or life challenge tomorrow. Then act on it before it acts on you.

    By downsizing, you will experience the following benefits:

      Take back control of your life
      Reduce stress
      Allow more time for family, hobbies, and community work

    Also, it will allow you to take advantage of a new career or business opportunity, one that maybe you have a real passion for, without being as concerned about "will this job pay my bills."
    Connect with Your Change Barometer
    Look inward or ask a good friend or family member how you handled change in the past. Ask the following questions:

    How did you feel?
    What did you look like?
    How did you react (or not react)?

    Ask for honest feedback and take the information to learn how to handle career change and challenges in the future. It's okay to feel a certain way during the challenge of change. It's not okay to stay there. Also, understand that everyone handles change differently. So respect your co- workers' feelings.

Take these six secrets to managing change, and you will master the present and create future opportunities

About the Author

Ed Sykes is an professional speaker, author, and success coach in the areas of leadership, motivation, stress management, customer service, and team building. You can e-mail him at, or call him at (757) 427-7032. Go to his web site,, and signup for the newsletter, OnPoint, and receive either free ebook, "Empowerment and Stress Secrets for the Busy Professional," or "Secrets of Outstanding Customer Service."

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