Pick a business and it is likely that business has changed.  Changed competitors. Changed margins. Changed players. Changed technology.  Changed laws.  Changed team members.  Changed leaders.  Changed business models.

“The business has changed – have you?”  This sign was on the desk of Mr. Robert Ratliff.  He was a founder and the CEO of AGCO, a farm machinery company.  He and a team of executives acquired the company in 1990 and over 15 years completed 21 acquisitions. Many of the acquisitions were known brands that had fallen on hard times.  I wonder to what extent he was thinking about changes and adapting to change as he grew his company and integrated companies that perhaps had not made the right changes.*

Examples of changes:

  • More proactive
  • More strategic
  • More of a people developer
  • More decisive
  • More collaborative
  • More influential
  • More open
  • More positive
  • More empathetic
  • More analytical
  • More assertive

Have you changed, and if so, to what extent have you changed for the better?  If not, why not?  What changes might improve your effectiveness?


*For more details see the Saturday May 6 2017 edition of the Wall Street Journal.  Every week the WSJ publishes three obituaries of notable people. The obituaries are interesting reading.  Mr. Ratliff and his team grew AGCO from $200M in 1990 to over $5Bn in 2005.  He was 85 years old.