This is not going to be one of those empty exhortations to grasp control of your destiny by getting off your arse and taking massive action.
Nor is it going to imply that the you are to blame for the unsatisfactory job in an unsatisfactory organisation that you find yourself in.
But if you are the sort of person who wants to change the organisation that you are in and make it a more progressive, adaptive, human-centred workplace then that is not going to happen if you do not change yourself.
It is not just that going through that transformation will impact and influence you in ways that you cannot foresee or resist so that you will end up a different person to who you are now. That is true, the experience will be transformative for you and everyone else.
It is that, if you are a change maker, if you want to lead and promote that transformation, then it has to START with your own transformation. You must begin to change yourself SO THAT you can enable the organisational transformation.
This is especially true if you are the leader because your own level of self-awareness and consciousness will determine the speed of transformation and the limit to how much the organisation can evolve to its new form (and continue to evolve).
It explains why so many ‘culture change’ programmes fail. They are ‘outside in’, the changes in the organisation are intended to create change in the behaviours of the individuals. The ‘leaders’ (as in the C-suite) do not have to be impacted by the programme or even directly involved. They often bring external consultants in to run them, which could hardly be any more ‘outside’ than that.
The desire is often that everyone should change – except them. So, unsurprisingly, the change fails.
When, in fact, the transformation to a modern workplace is wholly dependant on the personal transformation of the leader(s) – and then everyone else. This is not easy. It is challenging but it is the only way.
The good news is that you can start today. You don’t need to have any authority, you don’t need to have any permission. You can start now on your own journey of self-awareness and personal development, readying to lead when the time comes.
Not only can you start today, it’s essential that you do if the future we dream of, where every workplace is one where people thrive, is to come about.