Sledgehammer Change

by | Jun 15, 2021 | Change


In the quiet of the morning, I hear the kitchen clock rhythmically tick. While this happens all day long, it is only in the morning that I hear it. Stillness and quiet allows me to hear (and see) things I don’t in the busyness of the day. And I am tempted to desire things not to change. Tempted to believe everything is remaining the same while I sit in the quiet.

And yet, change is happening constantly. While it may not be sledgehammer like change, nothing is remaining the same. The air is warming up as the earth turns towards the sun. My breathing alters the makeup of the air in the room. The birds engage in the dawn chorus, have a dust bath, or enjoy an insect and worm for breakfast. And then scatter as the dog comes around the corner.

Too often we idolise the status quo. The current. The way things are or are done around here. We naively believe they are constant. And yet, they are changing too. Perhaps small, slow change, but change they do. Change makers, leaders, know this and they work with the evolving daily change to shape organisations. Sledgehammer change is a tool, but should be rarely used as sledgehammers tend to leave a mess behind. They are good for breaking things apart, for destruction, and for certain types of foundation work. However, they are not a finishing tool.

Unfortunately most of us associate, due to experience, organisational change with sledgehammers. It doesn’t have to be this way.

Photo by Obi Onyeador


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