When I first started out in my youthful working life, it was in an industry far removed from that I am in now. I can remember progressing to management within a few years and stayed with the same company for nine years. While there, the company “changed hands” at least four times. Every time it did, the new guys would, of course, have their own ideas about how to do what, when, and why. Every time it happened, typically a thick layer of middle / operational management would find themselves redundant, to be replaced by faces more liked by the new regime.
This new regime being the instigators of change, such new faces being the facilitators of change and front line managers like myself being the implementers of change. My job was always safe, so long as I adjusted well every time it happened and didn’t get myself promoted to the level of facilitator!
I ventured in due course on to other challenges and enjoyed many opportunities to learn, diversify and manage change in my life both on personal and professional levels. I felt that as the job market was becoming more dynamic and the “job for life” tradition was fast disappearing, this personal development was crucial for my future in the long run. I wanted to make myself not necessarily super successful, but certainly super employable. I worked hard on developing “transferable skills” so to maximise my ability to career change when necessary or desirable.
Such being the wisdom of my relative youth at the time, did I only succeed in time to lose influence with those who would most benefit from my experience?
It’s one of those things that tend to get harder, as you get older. I only know this as I’ve matured sufficiently to have experienced it first hand. Learning new things get more difficult, the longer in the tooth you get. This, for better or worse, is an inevitable fact of life!
However, it’s not completely necessary to just assume you shouldn’t try. Isn’t it also true after all, that some of the greatest challenges in life are the ones most worth the effort?
At least in my case, I did start on the road rather early…