Change - It Is Like Riding a Bicycle

Lorraine Ball

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Successful companies know change is a necessity. The challenge is continually encouraging, creating, and implementing worthwhile changes to make a difference for the business. Helping your team learn to accept and even embrace change is similar to learning to ride a bicycle.

Start with Excitement

Young children can hardly wait for their first Hot Wheels or tricycle. Their expectation is palpable. They want to ride, ride, and ride some more.

A business should generate that same level of electricity regarding change. Talk about changes, paint the landscape with its importance, and encourage all to be passionate about change.

Encourage Along the Way

Once children start to progress to the two-wheelers, they often are frustrated as they fall off their bikes and scrap their knees. Encouraging them to get up and try again is a part of improving their bike riding.

Similarly, employees need encouragement with adapting to ongoing change. Establish performance goals reflecting the need to innovate. Reward those who embrace this new behavior. Share the success stories.

Challenge the Process

Often children question their parents regarding their bike riding desires. Why can't I ride in the street? Why can't I have a mountain bike? Why can't I ride at night?

Employees are going to ask questions, too. This is beneficial. Understand the questions and comments. Weigh the value of any resistance. Adjust when it is logical. Encourage discussion in order to develop sound yet innovative changes.

Strive for Improvement

Once children are comfortable with the basics, they aim for new challenges - jumping curbs, performing stunts, or pedaling greater distances.

Businesses cannot be pleased with only one change, however great it is. Encourage employees’ adventurous spirit to develop ongoing, beneficial changes and implement them successfully to make a long-term difference for the company.

Make it Second Nature

Remember the adage of once you know how to ride a bike, you won't forget?

The same is true for businesses. Once you imbed the change-is-a-part-of-normal- business mindset, you will have the passion for change. Only it won't be change any longer. It will be business as normal, very successful business as normal.

A twenty-year veteran of corporate America, Lorraine is an accomplished marketing professional, who has won regional and national communication awards. She is a certified teacher, facilitator and college instructor. Lorraine Ball is a frequent guest panelist featured on “Sound Advice, " the popular online audio program from What's Working in Biz.

Her articles on marketing, team building, and business development have been featured in Contracting Business, The New York Forum and The ACH&R News. In addition, her books: “The Entrepreneur's Notebook" and “The Confessions of a Networking Junkie" are quickly becoming “MUST READS" for new business owners.

Today, her company, Roundpeg helps small business owners discover the secrets to big company marketing!


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