I’ve been in different companies and in different positions and the one common theme throughout all is the outright avoidance for the #1 obstacle to change – desire. A company might be doing great or it might be on the way to nothingness, the people could be top notch or very mediocre, the work environment ranging from open and happy to slave-like and demeaning…processes non-existent to CMA Level 5 – there seems to be no common theme in what makes the people in the decision making position have the internal desire required for real improvement. Desire is the one base element needed for change, change is a very uneven, scary place to be, one that many people avoid at all cost…but for those with the desire, one that could provide the greatest benefits – but sometimes not.
The biggest push back often heard is that the company is doing great, or at least good enough, stay with the known and continue to gain rewards. That’s the old wait and see the train coming at you syndrome.
Another is the knowledge that a bad or poorly executed change could cost the person their job…this is actually the same as above – wait and see the train coming. If you’re not gaining and you’re treading water safely why swim? Sharks! Currents! Endurance! Sooner or later someone comes knocking at the door looking for big results.
The downside to being a project manager is that you often don’t have the decision making position and at best have a strong influence on the person/people that do. There’s no process to add desire, you can’t provide a drink for it (even though a few beers at the right time could help) and you can’t influence it beyond where the decisions makers want to go.
God grant me the Serenity to accept the things I Cannot change;
Courage to change the things I can
And Wisdom to know the difference;