Balance Change and Continuity

Evolve, But Don’t Dissolve

Transition is a reality of leadership. Change often sweeps through a business, and it effects the lives of everyone in the workplace. In this video, Bill Pollard, retired CEO of ServiceMaster, explains the importance of a leader who handles change well. As leaders, it’s crucial that we navigate necessary changes with those we lead in a way that maintains continuity, but opens up new opportunities. 

Bill’s life is one of change. One unexpected event to the next altered the course of his life dramatically. The same thing happens in business. It’s important, however, to maintain a semblance of continuity—something that doesn’t change—otherwise the people we lead may grow confused or worried. Leadership in the midst of change takes balance. 

As you watched the video, what changes in your own life or business came to mind? How did you handle the change?
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How have you seen change disrupt a workplace? How was it resolved? What could have been preserved in the midst of change in order to help the workers adapt?
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Bill admits that change is necessary—without it, we’ll never grow and become better at our work. If we continue to do what made our businesses or endeavors great at first, we’ll eventually deteriorate because the world changes constantly. He concludes by saying, “We have to recognize that there’s tension between change and continuity, and it has to be managed.” 

How have you seen resistance to change affect a business? In what ways could that change have benefited the business?
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What can you do this week to prepare your people for change, or to build a system to help navigate change when it does happen?
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Few people truly enjoy change. As a leader, you have the potential to help your people navigate change in a way that keeps spirits high and builds stronger bonds of trust. This week, look for ways you can help your organization deal with change in a way that builds confidence.

For more insights and teaching from Bill Pollard, check out the full course The How-Tos of Servant Leadership

This post was made in cooperation with the Soderquist Leadership. For more great content, visit their website here.