|As many of you know, I had a long career with Hewlett-Packard. On Friday, I was surprised to hear that the CEO resigned amidst murky circumstances. Perhaps we’re hearing the real story, perhaps we aren’t, but it doesn’t really matter that much. HP is starting another change of leadership.As an employee, I lived through CEO changeovers three times before, and I realize that there are some important choices that you need to make – as an employee, as a customer, or as a shareholder. But they’re not what you might think.Recognize that a company of this size ($115B in revenue, 300,000 employees) never changes rapidly. The company for the next year will pretty much continue to do what it planned. Product line changes will continue, hiring or firing plans will continue, and the financial profile of the company will look the same as it would have without this event.
Yes, HP stock took a dive Friday and is only gradually recovering. The press is having a field day with the news, jockeying to get readers by uncovering (or perhaps trying to create) a compelling story. This is what they do, in an attempt to capture eyeballs for their advertisers.
As an observer of this event, you have some choices to make. The first is what rumors and speculation you choose to listen to, and propagate to others around you. You can have a surprisingly large effect just by the conversations you have with your colleagues and friends, especially if they might view you as someone with an interesting opinion or some kind of inside track.
It’s important for how you help others feel, as well as yourself. Do you want to spend your day frustrated, gloating, confused, or demotivated? Simply listen to the rumors that support those points of view – there will be many – and repeat them to others. For some reason people love to get caught up in emotional drama, so you’ll find ready ears.
Another big choice, one which may take many months to develop, will be how this changes your views of what the company stands for. Will you trust future decisions more or less than the past? Will this event, and the subsequent replacement of the CEO and others, make it more or less likely that you would want to be an employee or customer? Don’t base your shift just on the initial announcement; instead, monitor how the company goes through the coming months of uncertainty and key decisions.
Finally, this particular event, like others which touch your life, might propel you to look at larger decisions in your life. Perhaps this could end up changing how you look at your investment philosophy, or the companies from which you purchase products. It might get you thinking about career choices, and whether you’re more or less likely to want to work for a large company in the future.
These are the key choices which may be useful for you. But it’s not going to be anything that makes the popular press. This is internal work.
An important resource
I’ve been reading a great book from Johnna Bavoso entitled From Laid Off to Living. It’s primarily focused on helping people who have been laid off and want help navigating the tough emotions which result. Step by step, she leads you through the thought process, ending up with a revitalized focus and energy which will help you in your career and life.
Johnna is local here in Fort Collins, so I had the good fortune of meeting her in person. She’s also giving workshops on this topic through the local community workforce center, if you happen to be in the region.
|Carl Dierschow is a Certified Leadership Coach and author of the career management guide, Mondays Stink! 23 Secrets to Rediscover Delight and Fulfillment in Your Work. He is a career coach for those going through interesting transitions, and works with leaders who are creating amazing teams. Find out more at www.Dierschow.com and www.PossibilitiesPartnership.com.If you are interested in individual career coaching, group coaching, or other resources which might help you with difficult choices, please contact Carl at firstname.lastname@example.org.Connect with Carl on Facebook and LinkedIn to get timely updates and connections to a broader range of professionals.|
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