So much to do, so much opportunity; an endless uphill battle.
And on top of that…
…the regular job most of us in Service Management have in addition to the transformational duties we take on.
It’s a Marathon, not a Sprint
When you started this journey, it was exciting. A world of opportunity to improve service delivery and customer value was wide open. “We can do this”, you said, and you took off with a sprint because you saw the value, and it was there for the taking.
But 20 miles down the road, things look different. This is hard.
Why did we even start? When do we get to the fun part? Where’s the finish line, with the crowd cheering me on?
You’ve hit The Wall. Your feet feel like lead weights, and every step is a struggle.
Of course, I’m making the analogy of running a marathon and IT Transformation with IT Service Management.
My personal running journey hasn’t taken me to marathon distance. Yet. But my friends who marathon assure me that The Wall is a beast, and there’s not a lot to prepare you for it. It’s something you have to face.
The problem is, it’s not just the distance and the physical exertion. Somewhere around mile 20, many experience a demoralizing, overwhelming exhaustion, both mentally and physically.
It messes with your mind. Strips away your confidence. You were a fool for trying. You’re not a runner.
The Lonely Road
Organizational Change is hard. (See How Organizational Change is Like Quitting Smoking) There are forces at work to keep things the same. Some is just human nature. Some is calculated resistance.
If only people would ‘get it’. See how excellent we will be when we get there.
It’s just… right….there. So close you can taste it.
But it’s always an uphill battle. There’s a business to run. Day-to-day results to deliver in the here-and-now. If only we could just get a few basics in place, things would be so much easier.
It wears on you to see a better way, and yet have to deliver as-is.
It’s lonely out here on the road. In running, it’s hearing your breathing and the rhythm of footfalls on the pavement. Chush. Chush. Chush.
If you’re like me, a yeoman runner at best, you find yourself alone behind the middle pack of Weekend Warriors. Ahead of the walkers who are enjoying the journey at a leisurely pace. Way behind the über-competitive leaders.
Occasionally, you pass or are passed by someone like yourself, but for the most part, you’re alone. Your motivation has to come from within. From a deeply held belief that we can do this.
And just when you feel like you have it made… around the next curve comes the uphill you weren’t expecting. A setback. A change of duties. A new strategic direction. A major failure, and the scrambling to understand what went wrong. (And sometimes who gets blamed.)
The Nameless Face Cheering You On
I love watching races near these obstacles. The look on runners’ faces resonates with me deeply. The combined look of desperation and relentless resolve. I see you.
You dare to pursue Excellence.
You inspire me.
You would crawl up that hill on bleeding knees if that’s what it took.
Let me be the nameless face in the crowd cheering you on. It’s amazing people like you who make Service Management great.
I thank you for how you are making your organization great. One step at a time. One hill after another. You are weary and worn, but you refuse to give up. It’s not in you.
You faced the Beastly Wall, and you won.
You are Excellent.