“Recalculating.” How many times have you groaned when you heard that word coming from your GPS because you thought you knew the route and the GPS was sending you a different way, or because it meant you had missed a turn and now had to reroute.
But often this recalculation is a positive. The alert to “recalculate” means it’s time to choose a different path. This new path will show you new routes you might otherwise have missed, or reintroduce you to routes you’ve already encountered.
Organizational change is inevitable in businesses today; the question is how do individuals not only endure but thrive in such an atmosphere? As one of our webinar speakers, Cathy Glover, Director of Community Investment at Suncor, points out, implementing any major organizational change is like “building the car while it is still driving,” – clearly a significant challenge for any individual. The Center recognized this challenge as a common one for members and wanted to highlight two individuals who have learned from a transitional phase firsthand in our most recent webinar, Preparing for organizational change: A professional development guide. Along with Cathy Glover, Rosemary Matzl, Director of Community Relations at Illinois Tool Works, also spoke candidly about her experiences and learning related to corporate change.
In an evolving economy, it is business as usual when you receive a memo announcing a merger, acquisition, or CEO change. While organizational change presents challenges to professionals in all areas of a company, these changes can be particularly challenging when you work in sustainability, corporate responsibility, and community involvement.
For corporate citizenship professionals, such changes can have direct impacts on your grantees, programs, and even philanthropic priorities. The field in general has gained stature, the social and business benefits of your programs are well-known and understood by the current leadership, but will the priorities remain the same? Will you have to off-ramp with a charity that you’ve worked with for years? When a CEO who supported your corporate citizenship efforts decides to take an opportunity elsewhere, or a merger forces two different priority lists to compete, what is a citizenship professional to do?