Unexpected Change Builds Nimble Leaders

By Alison Beddard posted Sep 14, 2017 08:54 AM

  

Recently, my partner was diagnosed with some health issues. Actually, she has had a variety of symptoms that doctors cannot define or diagnose. For those of you who know me, I am a “glass is half full” person. But even with my positive energy and outlook, there came the moment when we knew we were dealing with something greater, an illness that would create a lifestyle change for both of us. She has a fatigue syndrome which causes her to be tired to the point she must rest most days in order to heal. As a high-energy lawyer, this lifestyle change was incomprehensible. It fundamentally affected our lives in so many ways: in terms of activities, what we eat, and whether we travel, among other things. Unexpected change. It’s part of life. How we adapt is key. The attitude we hold is critical. All of these thoughts were on my mind as we adjusted to this new lifestyle. 

Alison and Sammi

Likewise, as I reflect on the disasters of the past weeks and think about those affected by Hurricanes Harvey and Irma, I see the impact of unexpected change in a major and traumatic way. It’s been devastating to see people and animals at the mercy of wind, rain and flooding. It’s also been inspiring to see the American spirit alive and well as neighbor helped neighbor, and strangers contributed millions of dollars to those impacted by the storm. Those affected have responded with a resilient attitude.

As leaders, we often must adapt to new situations and unexpected change. It’s my observation that we are often much more prepared for the unexpected when we’ve had life experiences that created moments of challenge that require us to adapt and be nimble. In our business, we experience change moment to moment as we negotiate a lease, work with a client, interface with engineers or manage a project. We rise to the challenge by being quick to assess the issues, strategic in responding to them and authentic in leading others through the challenges.

CREW Network President Alison Beddard

Looking ahead to the CREW Network Convention and Marketplace in Houston, I see how unexpectedly so many things that have happened in the last few weeks to me personally and through Mother Nature’s trail of destruction relate to our theme of “Disrupt.”  In our lives and our work, we are disrupted by unexpected change. How we respond to it and adapt helps us be better leaders, better colleagues and better humans. I look forward to spending time with each of you at the convention connecting and comparing notes on change, nimbleness and attitude. You may have heard that life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react. I believe it’s true. Do you?

Alison


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13 days ago

Alison, 
Thanks for your insight as we now, as a nation suffer through another unthinkable tragedy. The challenges in life will never go away, whether they are related to work, health, natural disasters or evil in human beings, but it's how we respond and react and it's how we stand together.  I pray that as a nation we pull together and stand together with hands ready to assist each other and even carry the load of others until they can once again carry their own load. I pray that Sammi has a speedy and complete recovery.

18 days ago

​I believe Allison you are so correct in your view.  Our attitude is what it comes down to in how we deal with unexpected changes in our personal or professional lives.  In your personal case, you are not dwelling on what might have been, if your partner had not been sick, but, remembering  the good times and the blessings that you both still have and maintaining a positive outlook by taking in each day at a time.  In this world, all happiness is limited in some way.  I have relatives dealing with losses in Puerto Rico due to Hurricane Maria.  Speaking to them, you will only hear how grateful they are to have survived together and be there for one another.  They are dealing with the challenges that exist and will continue to exist for a long time.  Again, they are adapting and their attitude is what is holding them together.

Thank you for your sharing your personal and professional outlook.

Sep 14, 2017 01:08 PM

You're both inspiring! Sending Sammi healing thoughts and continued inquiry and strength for both of you.