Nine Key Principles of Change

“In all beginnings dwells a magic force” wrote Hermann Hesse. “Nothing has to stay as it is” was added by Dr. Angela Merkel in her commencement speech in May 2020 in Harvard. She shared 6 thoughts, which can be translated into key principles of change relevant for all organisations:

  1. Change begins in the mind—whether small or large.
  2. Change is possible if tackled jointly. You need to work together rather than alone. In striving to view the world through the eyes of others, you’ll often find good answers to even the most difficult of challenges.
  3. When pressure mounts to make a snap decision, take a moment to stop, be still, think and pause. Sometimes it will be difficult. Taking the time takes courage. It calls for truthfulness towards others and to being honest with yourself.
  4. It is important to gain clarity between factual and false information. Do not accept shortcomings normal.
  5. With all attention and projects focused on digitalization and technical feasibility, you might consider whether you prioritize people as individuals or whether you regard them merely as objects of business and control.
  6. Do not take any achievements for granted.
  7. Start by asking what is possible and look for things that have never been done before. Change encourages surprise—surprise at what is possible and what you’re capable of.
  8. Change bears risks. This includes to letting go of the old as a prerequisite for beginning something new.
  9. Nothing has to stay the way it is. Anything that seems to be set in stone and inalterable can change. Everything is possible.