Choosing to Change

I have an exercise for you. I want you to take a trip on the way home this evening to the local “Blockbuster” Video Store. Check out the new releases on video and tell me which your favorite is. To expedite the process, go ahead and do this mentally. Get in your car and imagine every turn right up until you walk through the front door. [Pause here to take your mental journey.]

How is it going so far? Oh! There is no Blockbuster Video in your community. Hmmmmm. But they were the dominate video rental franchise in this region for almost two decades. What happened? Red Box. Netflix. On-Demand. What happened to Blockbuster? They did not change. Actually they did change “some.” They converted from video to DVD but they did not look ahead and got outflanked by the competition. If someone wants a job at Blockbuster now they will be hard pressed to find an opportunity.

How do you feel about change? I like to say that I like change so long as I agree with it! The reality is that change is a constant reality. What worked in the past does not always work in the present and what works in the present will not likely work in the future. You don’t believe me? Ask an former employee from Blockbuster. The same is true in the church. The same is true for any ministry or organization in today’s ever changing climate.  Change is not a possibility or an option. Change is now a constant reality. Failure to grasp this reality can have devastating effects.

Listen to John G. Millers observations on this subject: “Organizations need to move forward rather than looking back. In other words, to change…and the key to that is changing the way we think. Rather than being held back by rigid thinking and resistance to change, outstanding organizations recognize that change is going to happen anyway, whether people like it or not. Given the organic, constant, and inevitable nature of change, how could we think that what works today will work tomorrow? The reality is, if a strategy or tactic is working now, the odds are high that it won’t work in the future. There is just too much change taking place in our world for it to be any other way.”

He concludes with this: “Simply put, outstanding organizations take charge of change by changing themselves first. For they know that, otherwise, change will happen to them – and if that happens, it might just be too late.”

Great words of wisdom for those who want to maximize their leadership!