Saturday, February 18, 2012

Handling change

Change happens in life. Or we should say 'sh*t happens'. There is nothing we can do about it. Again 'resistance is futile'. Darwin told us about survival of the fittest - the ones who adapt are the ones who survive. If you do not adapt, you will become extinct.

I volunteer with a non profit organization - actually I volunteer for a bunch of organizations. But there is one organization that has been faced with a lot of change over the last few years. They have grown from a small organization to a big organization which is a good thing. As a result they have had to mature and change the way they do business. Systems that were grassroots focused, with everyone pitching in to do what they can, now have been streamlined and replaced by new ones. People have new roles. Older expectations have been replaced by new ones. Former volunteers and employees have left and new ones have come in. This is not a bad thing. It is sad to see people leave but people do move on in life.

The organization has also had some growing pains over time. There have been issues with conflict with personnel, a problem employee, and lack of transparency. Some of the changes are to compensate for these issues. These things happen and life will go on. The problem employee has left. New expectations are being laid out. The organization continues to do its good things.

BUT (and that is a big fat but!) some people, volunteers mostly, are not handling the change well. There is some disgruntledness coming out from the volunteers. It is spreading negativity and unhappiness. I am not sure why it is continuing. Every new bit of change is being disparaged with additional comments. While I believe in the organization and like what I do for them, I am getting to the point where I don't want to be associated with them. Not because of the changes but because of the way some people are not adapting to the change.

It is taking the fun out of it for me. I am approaching a crossroads where I must make a decision on whether I continue to volunteer or not. I am sure I can find other organizations where I can volunteer but I have made friends with the other volunteers and will miss them and the organization.

Its all about handling change. I am trying but feel I am being pushed away by the unhappy ones. Maybe the change that happens is I move on.

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