Turn, turn, turn! Knowing when to leave

“Turn! Turn! Turn! To Everything There Is a Season (Book of Ecclesiastes via Pete Seeger and the Byrds)

All things change!

We all have special moments when we are truly happy. So happy in fact, that we want that moment to last forever.  We all have other moments that are so dark that time seems to stop – but it doesn’t.

One of the great lessons we learn is that time moves on and everything changes.

This is a true at work as much as in our private life.

We move into a new role or start a new project full of a mixture of excitement and trepidation.  We need to learn a new team as much as the technical elements of the work and the corporate culture.

We go through an adventure, reading the corporate map – which parts we can afford not to visit for a while and what others need urgent attention?

Just at the point when we think we know how it works we discover something staggering that we can’t afford to ignore.

The challenge is exciting.  There is work to do and people to lead who need our special skills and our particular vision.

Time moves on and the organization becomes our own!  But there are still challenges out there, new problems to solve and new horizons to look for.

Time moves on again.  We get to a point when we no longer need to look at the map, or even open our eyes, to know how to get where we want on that particular turf.

Nothing surprises us anymore and for us the task is complete.

What we are bringing now doesn’t have the same energy and excitement about it. We know the organization under our leadership is on the right track but we would rather think about things outside than inside it!

We feel we have stopped learning and we no longer inspire!

It is time to move on.  We know the organization needs something better and so do we!

So we plan our exit carefully as we would any project – we still care for this organization and its people.  We develop an exit strategy and we manage it.

We do all we can to help them find a  successor while we explore that opportunity that gave us such a buzz when we discussed it. We tie up the loose ends and move on.

We have done our best for the organization and ourselves.

Where as if you ignore the signs and hang around – oh dear!

You’ve seen them haven’t you – the Wednesday golf is far more important than the corporate vision!

Do you want to join them?

Then be prepared to turn, turn, turn and know when it is time to leave!

4 thoughts on “Turn, turn, turn! Knowing when to leave”

  1. Thanks for this.

    Some of the things I focus on when change gets too much for me (it often does given the speed of change in my world) is to consider:
    a) change is always going on whether or not I am aware of it
    b) it is slightly delusional to imagine that things don’t change or change shouldn’t happen to me
    c) it is the challenge to the delusion that causes the pain as much as the change itself
    d) I can let go of the delusion and free up energy to deal with the change itself
    If all that fails I sit and look at the stars and imagine how large the universe is, how very small I am, and consider how small my troubles are in the grand scheme of things. Somehow I find it comforting.


    1. Thanks Annabel – yes I share the comfort you feel when I look at the stars and realise that I am just a very tiny part of something much, much grander!

  2. Hi Wendy – a lyrical post! Planned change I think is a gift and intuitively knowing when any sell by date is nigh is a huge advantage. There are times when many people don’t see the writing on the wall and it comes as a shock. So always being prepared is good position to be in and staying one step ahead of the game is even better!

    1. Thanks Dorothy – I think it takes emotional intelligence and courage to read the runes and sometimes we don’t even want to see the stones on the ground before us!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *