Change takes time. There are no “quick fixes” in the world of change leadership. I’ve seen many leaders try to rush change through only to destroy themselves, the organization they are trying to change or the change they are trying to make.
There are occasions, however, when the speed of change can change. There are unique opportunities where change can be introduced and implemented quicker than other times. The leader should be careful to strategically plan each change, but taking advantage of these times can help facilitate change faster.
Here are seven times the speed of change can be faster than normal:
When the leader is new
The honeymoon period is real. Honestly, from my personal experience, I believe the period is becoming shorter than it may have once been. I don’t know how long this period ultimately lasts—perhaps only a few months or up to a year—but some change seems almost expected in the beginning days of a leadership position. Granted, this is not “major” change, but certainly some changes can be made quickly. Use wisdom here.
When the change is imminent
There are times when everyone agrees something must be done. When a needed leader unexpectedly resigns, for example, no one likely questions the change in staffing to hire someone new. When “it is what it is,” there is an expectation to make a change. Take advantage of these times to introduce healthy, smart change. Many times people overreact during these periods. Wisdom is still very important. These changes often set precedents for future change.
When the organization is new
In the early days of an organization, time can move quickly. Everything is new and so change may come rapidly. I experienced this in church planting. Change is almost an expected part of the process.
When there is a crisis at hand
I’ve seen this in government, the church and among individuals. When something happens which shakes the core of your being and scares people, they’ll be more accepting of any change which seems to protect them. (Warning: Sometimes these changes are regretted once emotions heal.)
When there is overwhelming support
There are times you can move swiftly simply because the support is overwhelming. Momentum for change is often fueled by public opinion. It should be noted, this can be dangerous if the change isn’t good long-term or is emotionally driven, but the point is public opinion does impact change.