Thoughts from an early front runner

Posted on October 24, 2010 by

People react to change in many different and interesting ways.  It’s one of those things with no right or wrong answer.

I, for one, happen to like change.  Not the “change for change sake” kind, but the type that is done to make something better.  And there is always room for improvement.  It could be in reaction to external forces – the economy takes a dive, new technology emerges, or customers needs change over time.  Whatever the reason, we need to be able to respond and adapt in order to continue to provide superior service.  The way I figure it is that I can’t make our financial reality much worse and that gives me the mental freedom to open up all of our lines of business to creative ideas.  Not all of them will be wildly successful, but we will learn from those and tweak it a bit for the next time.   In Fleet Administration we are testing out new ways of bringing our services to our customers instead of the customer having to always bring the vehicles to our shops.  While it doesn’t save money in our own budget, this seemingly small change can save money in our customers’ budgets.

Going through the Front-Runner’s training gave me an opportunity to think about all of this change in a more structured way.  My approach tends to be more intuitive; I know the right thing to do.  I just need to implement it!  What I learned was how to engage people in the process to ensure success.  Who knew people worked through change the same way they work through the grieving process?  I’d never thought of it that way before.

Written by Jennifer Lindwall, Director of Fleet Administration, King County.