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Friday, March 18, 2011

Five Things Your Dog Can Teach You About Business


One of the few things you can count on in business is change. Another thing you can count on is experts who tell you how to deal with change. Penelope Wong and Suzanne Peck, authors of Ruff: A Lost Dog Tale, think they’ve found a best-of-breed approach to dealing with it. (Yes, that was a dog-related pun. There will be more. Sorry.) Wong and Peck believe that we can look to our canine cohorts to learn how to cope with the chaos we encounter in our work and personal lives. Now, there are many things about my dog I would love to emulate, sleeping all day anywhere she wants being prime among them. Loyalty and the ability to keep a secret also number among her virtues. I have not, however, noticed that she deals all that well with change. Move her bed or lose her chew toy and she is not a happy puppy, so I’m not sure how she’d respond to the stresses of a corporate environment. Wong and Peck have more well-adjusted animals, I guess. Check out their “Five Great Strategies for Dealing With Change.”

1. Sniff Out the Situation
Gnaw on the complexities of the change at hand and consider different strategies before jumping to a solution.

2. Perk Up Your Ears
Listen to people with different backgrounds (and maybe at higher frequencies) to get unstuck in your thinking.

3. Take a Bite
Experience the new -- even one little chew can open up a whole new world of possibilities.

4. Speak!
Look at the changing situation through others’ eyes and frame your response to support their priorities.

5. Aim For Best in Show
Focus on a positive outcome and use others’ unique strengths to make the change a winning experience for all.


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