When you are faced with a change how do you respond?
Have you ever experienced a time when you felt you couldn’t take any more change? Perhaps your sponge was full.
The SPONGE = your capacity
In Managing at the Speed of Change, Daryl Conner explains the concept of the sponge. “Change is typically poured onto the physically and emotionally saturated sponges of the work force while management watches helplessly as their intended objectives run down the drain.”
Within each person is a limited capacity for assimilation of change. When a person’s finite resources of intellectual energy and physical stamina are used up it doesn’t matter how much the person wants to change, he or she is out of capacity.
“Managers can no longer flip a switch and pour on the changes. The spray-and-pray approach (announcing major change and hoping it will take hold) is out of date and insufficient.” (pg. 56 Conner)
When you are feeling fully saturated, you can either squeeze out your sponge or increase it. We refer to previous Tuesday Tremendous Tips to provide insights on how to squeeze or increase the sponge!
Squeeze the Sponge – Manage Change Saturation
Increase the Sponge: Resilience is the capacity to recover from change. Here are two previous tips and a presentation that address resilience:
• Aspects of resilience
• Strategies to increase resilience
• A presentation to support your team and discuss resilience strategies you can apply
It’s helpful to understand that no one is super human with a limitless sponge. When you take time to understand your capacity and manage it well, you will improve your ability to recover from change.
When you are saturated from change, it’s helpful to understand that you are not crazy and there is nothing wrong with you. Step away from the sponge and decide whether you want to wring it out (reduce change and complexity) or grow it (practice resilience.)