If you think change is hard for you, think about those around you.
Some will say that your friends, family, employees and supporters love you for who you are. And this is often true.
And in an ironic twist the fact that they like you for who you are often means they don’t want you to change. Where you are, who you are now, is good for where they are.
So this article is for you, the business owner or leader that wants to change and wants to find the support to make it reality.
#1 – Figure Out Who Likes Your Identity And Who Likes Your Role
In being who you are there are two clearly different things that are often intertwined. And that’s your identity and your role.
Your identity is who you really are. Your moral values, your beliefs and your intrinsic value as a human.
Your role is about what you do. You might be a business owner, a wife, and a mentor. These are specific things you do in the world.
The two are often related, especially in Western culture.
Many people think what they do is who they are.
And the truth is few people value you for who you really are deep down. Maybe your parents, maybe your spouse, maybe your adult children and maybe your close friends actually care about your identity.
But for most of the world your role is what matters.
What do you do for them?
This is critical to think about because as you change and stay true to your identity your role performance might change. And for many people this means your value to them changes.
As your role changes you might lose friends. It’s one of the reasons that many people cite for growing as a human to be so hard – you often need to find new friends.
#2 – Get Support For The Future You
If you are going to make it from here – where you are now – to there – where you desire to be in the future – you need a bridge.
You need to have support for the future you.
It’s too hard to have to start over each step of the way and reset your social circle. You need a path that keeps you supported.
This is why you need people around you that love your identity and support the future you. The you you want to be.
This means you want people that really support you and your growth process.
Close family – like spouses and siblings – and others that are growing alongside you – like fellow business owners – are great sources of support.
The key is to find others that will be with you as your role changes. Find people that care about your identity.
#3 – Supporters Want To Know Their Role In The Future Too
Since most people are looking out for themselves your supporters want to know they have a role in your future.
This, in fact, might be why so many supporters tend to hold others back from growth. Somewhere in their mind they think, or know, that if you grow you you won’t need them in their current role.
That puts them in the spot of having to grow with you – or become irrelevant.
So as you are growing talk to those close to you and make sure they know they have a role in your future.
#4 – Work On Shared Visions
One way to make sure your support team stays with you as you grow is to have shared visions.
What will the future look like – with both of you in it – when you grow? How will things fit together?
Take some time with those that are supporting your growth, whether it is friends or your team at work, and build a shared vision of the future.
Often that shared vision will be key. That shared vision will help you work together to a bigger goal and keep everyone calm about the future you will share together.
#5 – Make It A Win-Win
If you can share a vision of the future you can also make it a win-win situation.
As we know people are more likely to support you when things are in it for them.
So if you can make your growth and change a win for them – well you are a long way there. So how will others benefit from your change? What will it mean to them?
Work to create win-wins for your supporters so they’ll stay by your side.
Could your growth mean a promotion for one of your employees if they grow into a higher role in your company? If that’s a real possibility discuss it – without over promising – so they can see the win-win and are motivated to do the work.
Same goes for your family. If you want to grow so you can spend more time with the husbands and kids tell them that. That gets them invested in being part of your growth – not an opponent.
What To Do Now
One of the biggest keys to growth is to set the foundation for it.
In this article you’ve learned a lot about setting the stage for growth.
Take a moment and think about your path to growth and how it will impact your support team. Then start talking to them about it!
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NOTE: This article is a piece develop a small portion of the content of the book tentatively called The Journey: Finding Your Place From Entrepreneur to CEO being co-authored by The Our Shawn McBride and Ann Gatty. If you want updates on the book including the possibility of joining our release team or getting one of the first copies please join our mailing list here.
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