Managing Change

 

As many of you read in a recent email I sent, ABMP has replaced its information system. This endeavor was completed (well, it’s never complete) the weekend before Thanksgiving. This is the fourth association management system (AMS) replacement/migration I have endured in my 23 years in association management. The technology has changed, the price has surely changed, and my role has changed, but each time what hasn’t changed is change—and how we deal with it.   ABMP and its sister organizations—Associated Skin Care Professionals (ASCP) and Associated Hair Professionals (AHP)—serve more than 92,000 individuals. Our goal is to serve them very well, all of the time. And we have a pretty good batting average. However, I have learned in those 23 years, replacing your information system is nearly impossible to do seamlessly. We can rest assured that the streak continues. Our team has gone above and beyond to ensure our operations would not be compromised, and the outside vendor helping us implement this new system has embraced the challenge as well. But no matter how much you game-plan, challenges arise. What seems straightforward—adding and renewing members—involves dozens of processes, most of which are inter-related. Rebuilding them from scratch is a painstaking process that can’t fully be tested until you are “live.” We have experienced a few minor glitches in the past 10 days, and if we have compromised our service to you, please accept my apologies. We’re getting things ironed out, and it only gets better from here. But my belief is I’d rather apologize too soon than too late.   How do you accept change? Is it exciting, or terrifying? What has changed in your practice or career recently? Were you a victim of it, or did you embrace it and ride the wave? By definition, change is unsettling. We can’t truly be prepared for it. Like I tell my kids often (and myself even more often), “You can’t control what happens, but you can control how you deal with it.”   Today is November 27th, which holds special meaning in my life. In 1983 on this date, I got in a car accident. I wasn’t hurt, and it wasn’t my fault, but it’s funny how some things stay in your memory. Better yet, in 1989, I started my professional career on this date, and met a new co-worker named Sarah Ewy, who became the love of my life. Happy November 27!

 

Road to Boston: Week 5 Okay, so Old Man Winter dropped by yesterday, as you can see—a reminder to me what’s coming. Highlight of the week was running a Thanksgiving Turkey Trot and winning a cheesecake for coming in first in my age group. Even better was leaving the cheesecake at my brother-in-law’s house so I didn’t eat it!   Prefer to receive more from Les in small doses? Follow him on Twitter — @abmp_les.    

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