Why You Should Stick With One Change Before Trying Something Else

Photo by marsmet546

Photo by marsmet546

Change Is Good, Right?

We live in a world full of change. It would seem in our modern era, constant change is our new norm.

In fact, I know some people who love changing things up in their lives, their homes, their ministries, and their work, simply because they love change so much. They can’t sit still in one place for very long. They change for the sake of change.

While I believe change can be a positive force within our personal lives and organizations, we need to be cautious on creating a constant churn of change. Too much of a “good” thing could end up having a negative impact over time.

Do changes need to be made on an occasional basis? Yes, especially in this super-fast paced, crazy, modern world we now live in. But, I do think we need to exhaust all the possibilities of one change before moving on to something else. Massive changes always take longer to take root and establish themselves then we think they do.

So, if you really want to grow and develop something, then don’t go with the following approach: make a change, give it two weeks, don’t see much progress, scrap that change, and then move onto something else. This is not the best plan to grow yourself, a ministry, a business, a church, or any organization.

Cranking Down On The Flywheel

In his book Good To Great, author Jim Collins talks about the flywheel effect and its impact on taking an organization from good to great.

A flywheel is simply a huge, metal, heavy disk mounted on an axle. Because of its size and weight, if you can get the flywheel moving fast enough, it will produce a tremendous amount of energy to keep an engine moving faster and more efficiently.

To get that flywheel moving at first, though, takes a tremendous amount of energy. You have to push and push to get it to finally make one revolution. Then, you push a little more, and it makes a second revolution, and then a third one. Each revolution gets a little easier because of the weight energy stored within the flywheel itself.

All of the sudden, after several difficult rotations of the flywheel, momentum takes over. You can’t pinpoint the exact moment when it does, but there will be less effort required to keep the flywheel moving.

This same principle can be true in our personal lives, businesses, churches, or organizations. When we’re in the beginning stages of making massive changes, it’s going to take a tremendous amount of time and energy. We’re going to have to push our flywheel really hard. We may want to roll over and give up. But, if we know these are the correct changes to make, that this is the correct path to go, then we need to keep pushing with everything we have. If we have enough strength and patience to keep going, then over time, the flywheel effect will take place, we build momentum, and the massive changes we desire will take place.

The key to accomplishing the flywheel effect, though, is don’t stop. Many people and organizations do not have the patience to be persistent with their current change path. They push for a little while, don’t think they’re making any progress, and then give up and try some other change path. This doesn’t work. Simplicity, consistency, and persistence are the only ways to effect any kind of long-term changes in your life or organization.

Questions:  Are you in crisis mode to get something going and growing? Do you have the tendency to change things too often in order to stimulate growth? After reading this post, are you going to approach change differently?