Millions Audition every year for reality singing competitions: American Idol, The Voice, America’s Got Talent and local-inspired versions of each. Who doesn’t dream of being a rock or country star at some time in their life? It is perhaps the reason why I play music in the office, car, online, etc. It may help explain why I dressed like Pitbull to deliver my last President’s Address at our Client Forum in Miami and have more in store for Nashville 2016.
I recently read Ben Greenman’s book Emotional Rescue: Essays on Love, Loss and Life – With a Soundtrack: a tribute to the power of lyrics and songwriting to capture the human experience. Mr. Greenman uses thematic playlists to capture the emotions of living in an effective and highly-entertaining way. I would recommend for anyone who frequently breaks into songs on this journey of life.
We operate in a world that is increasingly uncertain, ambiguous and unpredictable. I prefer steady-as–you-go; a balanced, status-quo lifestyle and environment – a natural resistance to change mentality – a Buffetesque-like patience during the internet bubble. Yet I am also constantly seeking improvements, new models, a better path forward, and experimenting to learn. Change is constant and it can certainly be argued that the pace of change is increasing. Market conditions transform rapidly and globalization and technology add challenges to any business. The time from a new product or feature launch advantage shrinks as competitors rush to imitate, seemingly overnight.
Is it any wonder why my most frequently-referenced song playlist is labeled “Change?” My playlist helps position for and persevere through change. As we experience any ongoing significant change, we should not minimize the emotional side. Perhaps it is why Ben Greenman’s book and approach is so meaningful.
Two of Andesa’s corporate values are Courage and Initiative – both necessary to overcome inertia and resistance to change. The lyrics of John Mayer’s “Waiting on the World to Change” (2006) depicts being overwhelmed and powerless. I perceive the message challenges one to be courageous and take initiative.
Me and all my friends, we’re all misunderstood;
They say we stand for nothing and there’s no way we ever could;
Now we see everything that’s going wrong with the world and those who lead it;
We just feel like we don’t have the means to rise above and beat it.
So we keep waiting, waiting on the world to change;
We keep on waiting, waiting on the world to change;
It’s hard to beat the system, when we’re standing at a distance;
So we keep waiting, waiting on the world to change.
U2 lead singer Bono is quoted as saying, “Music can change the world because it can change people.” Sometimes one is driven to make a positive impact. Michael Jackson’s “Man in the Mirror” (1988) often serves as an inspiration to contribute and make a difference. It also serves to remind us that change is internal; it is a soul-searching practice we must undergo for the experience to be meaningful and lasting.
I’m gonna make a change, for once in my life;
It’s gonna feel real good;
Gonna make a difference, gonna make it right ….
I’m starting with the man in the mirror;
I’m asking him to change his ways;
And no message could have been any clearer;
If you wanna make the world a better place;
Take a look at yourself and then make a change.
In a different regard, sometimes I am motivated to change because I simply can’t take it anymore. My team sometimes calls me out on this as “the risk of poking the sleeping bear.” Tony Robbins is quoted as saying that “change happens when the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of change.” What catalyst overcomes inertia in your life? The REO Speedwagon song “Roll with the Changes” (1977) helps generate and maintain change initiatives:
So if you’re tired of the same old story, turn some pages;
I’ll be here when you are ready, to roll with the changes.
Ah, you know you know you know you got to
(keep on rollin’); oh yeah,
(keep on rollin’); oooh roll with the changes.
Change is hard. Initiating change is sometimes more difficult. Persevering and sustaining change can be hardest of all. I hope these artists have encouraged you to be a bit more courageous, to take the initiative and to make a difference, in your life and in your world.
Here’s my complete change playlist: Bob Dylan – “The Times They Are A-Changin;’ Sheryl Crow – “A Change Will Do You Good;” Fleetwood Mac – “Landslide;” Wicked Soundtrack – “For Good;” John Mayer – “Waiting On The World To Change;” REO Speedwagon – “Roll With The Changes;”;Eric Clapton – “Change The World;” Paul McCartney – “Sing The Changes;” Tim McGraw – “Things Change;” David Bowie – “Changes;” and Michael Jackson – “Man In The Mirror.”