The Challenge of Change Projects is Their Intensity
Leading or being affected by change in an organisation can be stressful. The pace of the project and the impact on staff can cause people to disengage, become depressed, feel very vulnerable and show behaviours that are out of the normal.
There is a place in every change project for practices that help to manage the stress and allow people to work at their best. A recent study showed that looking at nature, for as little as 40 seconds at a time, at regular times during the day, positively impacts performance and reduces stress levels. Help to streamline the project by integrating practices that reduce stress — mindfulness techniques, yoga, and the like — into the Change Plan as part of the management of the change.
The Challenge of Change Projects is their intensity – the strong drive and motivation of people to achieve the results in short time-frames can unbalance the strongest performers.
In the parlance of Harrison Assessment’s Paradox Theory, strong drive, or “Self-Motivation” must be balanced with “Stress Management”. It means that to maintain our poise under pressure, we put as much attention on practices that manage our stress as we do on achieving results and outcomes.
Being balanced means being able to make choices about what you need at any point in time – to bring all the forces of your Self Motivation to achieve some results quickly, or to schedule some down time where you do anything but think about work.
Being completely away from work – physically, emotionally and mentally – is called Tranquil Inertia. It is not a state that we want to exist in all the time, as it lacks any personal drive, but it is necessary to keep strong performers and achievers in balance. Tranquil Inertia is where you go or what you do to relax, to get away from work, stress and commitments, and to disengage.
Poised Achievement When You Balance Your Motivation and Your Stress Management
Self-Motivation and Stress Management seem to be contrary traits. However when you focus on each equally and keep them in balance you reach a state of calm achievement, or “Poised Achievement”.
Find Your Tranquil Inertia When Under Stress
If you are using the Paradox Theory in the Paradox Reports of Harrison Assessments, you will see “Tranquil Inertia” as a passive imbalanced quadrant of the Motivation Paradox. When a person’s natural tendency is to have low drive and strong preference for relaxation they are said to be primarily in this quadrant.
But it is equally true that when the desire to achieve is greater than your ability to manage stress (the Stressed Achievement quadrant) you may also have an underlying desire to have a respite from your hard work – to find that Tranquil Inertia.
Common Tranquil Inertia Activities to Rebalance Stressed Achievement
The myth around Tranquil Inertia activities is that they must be passive activities such as watching TV. But activity is very beneficial for stress management. Going to the gym, playing tennis or soccer, walking, gardening are all common activities for stress management. Others include mowing the lawn, taking the dog to the park, listening to music, swimming or going to the beach, sitting by a river, video gaming or taking a long leisurely drive in the country. Any hobby is good – woodwork, embroidery, hand-making books, painting. Being with other people outside of your work network works wonders. Taking up yoga, meditation, breathing exercises, Pilates and other similar practices give ongoing health benefits. And volunteering or being of service in some way is a good way to take us outside of ourselves.
How Harrison Assessments Can Help
Harrison Assessments Talent Solutions recognises that most people have a tendency for shifting to Tranquil Inertia. The Smart Questionnaire can measure the intensity of the Motivation paradox and identify how well you use both your Self Motivation and Stress Management. It will show how likely you are to become imbalanced in either direction. It gives you the ability to recognise your own tendencies and through this Self Awareness, to manage your situations, not be controlled by them.
The Place for Tranquil Inertia in Change Projects
We identified one of the challenges of Change Projects is their intensity – the strong drive and motivation of people to achieve the results in short time-frames which can unbalance the strongest performers. Knowing the tendencies of your strongly motivated staff will help you manage the team and the success of the project. Understanding that all staff affected by the project will experience stress in different ways and react differently to it – and all will wish for some relief from the intensity. Building down-time into schedules, and stress management training and activities into the Change Training Plan will smooth the project.
To find out more about using Harrison Assessments to find the right people for your business contact us here.
A much earlier version of this post originally appeared on the Harrison Assessments blog. For more posts like this, visit our Solution Provider site.