A world of chaos?

01 October 2018

I work in organisations across the country. All of them different but often the issues are similar. Not enough resources, constant change and an expectation that service and performance will continue to improve. In some cases it is about driving up profit and keeping shareholders happy. In public sector organisations it is about delivering services that meet community needs within tight financial constraints. For small businesses it is about survival and growth.

The business world talks about VUCA (Volatility, Uncertainty, Complexity and Ambiguity). Look at the rapid changes in technology, connectivity, politics (think Brexit amongst other things), and the world can become a scary place for some individuals.

What does this have to do with coaching?

Rapid changes can make people anxious. How many of us have jokingly said that a computer will be able to do our job one day? The truth is in many industries, technology has already replaced people. It started with the Industrial Revolution but the pace is now so much faster. This doesn’t mean that people won’t be needed. It will take a different set of skills to work in the future so we must all be prepared to change to meet new demands.

For some people change is exciting and motivating. For others it is a time of great anxiety and can be paralysing. Coaching is one way of helping individuals see a way through all the complexity, ambiguity and uncertainty. Even those who embrace change may still have some concerns about their role going forward. Restructures, redundancies and new ways of working impact on everyone.

This may be a senior leader who needs to explore ways of implementing change in their organisation or team that will reduce anxiety and create a positive working environment. This is in addition to driving performance and meeting financial targets.

On a personal level it might be about exploring whether future changes are right for that individual. Do they want to change with the organisation or do they want to explore new challenges? The questions they may be asking are:

How can I adapt to change?

Do I want to change?

Do I want to do something else?

Coaching can be challenging and at times emotional but it is a safe environment for someone to look at where they want to be and how they are going to get there. It will provide strategies for dealing with the complexities of change on a personal level and alleviate anxiety.

Our world isn’t going to slow down. Technology will advance even further. Artificial Intelligence anyone? Expectations will continue to rise. We will be expected to be all things to all people, even more than we are now. What we need to ensure is that our employees, friends, family and most of all ourselves are able to face the challenges with the tools and strategies to keep us safe, motivated and most of all happy with our lives.