There is so much chaos at work these days. People are living with so much stress and anxiety due to uncertainty at work. Based on my own personal experience of living with chaos at work, I’ve come up with 3 ways to Embrace the Chaos at work:
1. Accept [Rule#1] that organizational change will happen more often and be more drastic. People will move, leave, come in and evolve. Products, businesses, services will launch, grow market share, spin-off, be acquired and lose market share. It will happen and it is out of your control. So why bother thinking about IF it will happen? It WILL happen. Expect it and Accept it. That’s the way business is today. Fast, competitive, always changing and global. Things will not ‘settle’ down one bit. Don’t wait for the “change is over, go back to work” memo! It will not come. As business grows, it becomes more complex and not LESS complex. Why whine about it? Accept it for what it is – a fact of life. Embrace it. You won’t be disappointed if you expect things to change all the time because you’ll be right.
2. Focus [Rule#6] on only the most important things you have to do that is in your control. Be a craftsman. Be the only one who actually reads the attachment on an email. Do your job really, really well. Become the subject matter expert. The best in the company, in the neighborhood, in the industry. Be really good at what you’re supposed to be doing. Nothing else. There are so many distractions during the course of a day. Meetings, teleconferences, off site retreats, txt messages, emails, competitor updates, etc. So much of it can be a distraction that doesn’t add value to your job. Ignore it! Decline a meeting. End a call earlier. Block your calendar. Ignore it all if you have to! Just hone in like a laser. Be the person everyone says, “Hey you gotta get her advice on this – she’s really good”. Be that guy. Be that girl. That everyone respects for being really good at their job.
3. Go Deep [Rule #5,#7]. Ask really good, tough and penetrating but fair questions. The right questions. Not yes or no questions. Because yes or no questions are useless. Management has already made a decision. The right questions to ask in a world of chaos at work are about HOW. How to get it done. How do we make this work? How do we balance growth while lowering expenses? How do we use the same resources to do more? How do we hire the right person for this job? How do we grow our business without alienating our current customers? How do we fight global competitors without spending too much? And to make it a tiny bit easier – Go deep on professional bonds with colleagues. Get to know your colleagues and where they are coming from. Ask them questions to really understand what they think. Who they are and how they think. Respect them by listening and building a collegial relationship. They’ll respect you. And you’ll accomplish more.