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WHO MOVED MY CHEESE?

BenGroneman's picture

My dad took a new job when I was 12, moving our family from Cincinnati to the small Cleveland suburb of Chagrin Falls, OH. I was devastated and battled feelings of betrayal for months.

Why would my parents choose this for me and my brothers? We loved life in Cincinnati and were fortunate to have many family members in town. Personally, I had just finished the 7th grade at a new school. Lucky enough to make the basketball team, I was quickly forming meaningful friendships, many of which I cherish to this day. Uncertainty of the future and fear of leaving my friends—a comfort zone—terrified me.

During the move, my parents quietly encouraged me to read Dr. Spencer Johnson’s Who Moved My Cheese? Too stubborn to admit it at the time, the quick-read had a surprisingly meaningful impact on me. To borrow from Amazon.com and quickly summarize Dr. Johnson’s teachings:

“Most people are fearful of change because they don't believe they have any control over how or when it happens to them. Since change happens either to the individual or by the individual, Spencer Johnson shows us that what matters most is the attitude we have about change.”

Dr. Johnson’s #1 best-seller taught me the importance of embracing change, breaking out of my comfort zones and ‘learning to be comfortable being uncomfortable.’ To grow both personally and professionally, it is vital that we seek new adventure and opportunity.

Whether you’ve recently switched jobs, your boss changed, a coworker took another job, management cut your budget or maybe a long-time corporate partner chose not to renew a sponsorship, undoubtedly these changes cause anxiety and frustration. Don’t let them. Embrace new opportunities and force yourself to think about the changing circumstances in a different light.

Earlier this summer I joined PCG’s sales team in Chicago and everything changed again. Unlike my childhood move, this was a decision I controlled and wanted. Regardless, I still had hesitations and found myself wondering at times during the transition “Who Moved My Cheese?” as I adjusted to a new city, apartment, coworkers, boss, social life, etc.

Now three months into the new role, I’m amazed at how quickly one can jump into a new routine. I’m again reminded of how valuable change is to my personal growth. New to Chicago, I’m reaching out to industry locals for coffee; I changed apartments and roommates three times (long story), randomly joined an intramural team of strangers and ditched my car for public transit. Professionally, I transitioned from account management into sales. Although apprehensive at first, these changes have all helped me grow tremendously over the past three months. Convincing myself to seek new opportunities rather than dwell on my past successes and comforts has been the driving force. I owe much of that to a simple lesson I learned in the 7th grade about cheese!

About the author:
Ben Groneman
ben@propertycg.com
Ben joined Property Consulting Group in May of 2015 as an Account Executive, focusing primarily on exploring partnership opportunities for PCG client, Minor League Baseball (MiLB). Prior to joining PCG, Ben spent three years with TeamWork Online, the sport and live event industry's premier online recruiting network, managing relationships with clients in the NBA, NFL, MLB, MiLB, NHL, PGA TOUR, ATP Tour, IMG, USNGB’s and more.

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