Like many I have spent the last seven days enthralled by the reactions of my fellow Brits to the General Election. The first change of government in 13 years and the first coalition government in a generation. From radio phone ins to TV chat shows, from blogs to tweets, such change has engendered an outpouring of hatred, bitterness, resentment, envy, cynicism, grief, resignation, excitement, positivity, hope, in fact just about any human emotion you can think of. All caused by change. Its scary, uncertain, exciting, inevitable.
The one thing of which I am certain is the energy that it has brought about, both positive and negative, brings with it enormous opportunity. Look at the outcome. We have the chance to alter our electoral system to the extent that the way we are governed in future could fundamentally change.
I have a sense that we are living in one of the most incredible times in human history. In many ways a modern-day industrial revolution. Do you think back in the 18th and 19th Century when such huge advances were being made in the way we lived people took the time to reflect on the enormous changes going on around them?
The rise of China, India and Brazil as economic powerhouses, the impact of the web on how we communicate, interact, transact, the amount and pace of change in recent years is incredible. The world is a small place for those of us fortunate to live in the developed or developing world. Innovation is immense. I remember an office before email and mobile phones. Now smart phones in all their forms are business critical tools. Google barely existed 10 years ago. Facebook the same. Just look at what have they achieved through embracing the opportunities presented by change.
Traditional models and thinking are being tested to the limit and the status quo is being challenged at every opportunity. Take my own industry. Recruitment has not changed its business model in 70 years and yet is faced with enormous threats from so many new media and tools. Many are burying our heads and taking the view that tough economic times mean heads down survival. I can think of many other businesses that I have had experience of recently who are bemoaning the tough climate whilst continuing to do the same thing they always did without getting what they always got.
Change is scary but it inspires. It encourages passion and emotion, it creates pain and opportunity. This is the stuff that keeps us alive. Long may things continue to change.