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3 Major Forces of Change

Aug 17, 2007
PEOPLE - the most obvious reason we see a faster rate of change is because we are producing a lot more people and people cause change. People make things - they come up with new ideas - they compete for scarce resources. Whatever sorts of things people do, we will continue see it happening more and faster.

TECHNOLOGY - Since technology is a product of the human race, we can expect the rate of technological change and advancement to follow the trends of our population growth. It has been stated that over 8o percent of the world's technological advances have occurred since 1900. With more people to come and also because technology actually feeds on itself, a rapid and accelerating rate of technological change is guaranteed.

INFORMATION - Knowledge. There was more information produced in the 30 years between 1965 and 1995 than was produced in the entire 5,000 years between 3000 B.C. to 1965. And since then even more! It has been said that the amount of information available in the world is doubling every 5 years - plus, all this knowledge and information is readily available to many more people than it ever reached before. The Internet is the driving force of this.

We definitely live in an exciting era with much growth, change and advancement occurring! We all know that a direct result of change can easily be stress; thus the question that often pops up is: "So who is causing all of the changes?" In most companies today, upper management takes the rap for causing the changes - after all, they are the ones who get to call the shots. Thus, most people believe it is quite fair to point fingers and accuse the upper management for being the main source for the pressure and emotional strain encountered.

But the fact of the matter is that this is not necessarily true at all - for appearances can be deceiving. It is important to realize that in most cases, management moves are often "reactions" for the organization may simply be trying to respond to some outside force ... competition, new technology, economic turns, and/or marketplace shifts and customer expectations. So if organizational management is actually attempting to deal with such an underlying problem that could impact the company's future, then that root cause is the real culprit.

Now it is important to not take this line of reasoning as some sort of weak defense for company management - for there are definitely times when this would not be the case. For example, when someone in management makes a bad decision and it is obvious that there was a better way of handling a specific situation and avoiding the consequences that resulted.

What is important is one's own ability to be responsible for their stress reduction in these difficult situations. Do not count on others to come along and relieve your stress. Put yourself in charge and be responsible for managing the pressure you are encountering. The fact of the matter is, you are probably the only one in your work situation who will - or even can - do much to lighten your emotional and psychological load.
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Pj Germain
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