Posted on : 23-11-2012 | By : Lynn | In : Career Stuff, Featured
Tags: Barnes & Nobles, employment, lay offs
The tough, the meek, and the rest of us get going! Learned over coffee with a good friend this morning that the Barnes & Nobles right next door to where we were sitting was closing it’s doors sometime at the end of December. As a customer, I knew that I wanted to purchase some of the great calendars and cards that would be on sale (40% off) but as a Coach, I wanted to connect with at least one of the B&N employees who would be faced with looking for a new place of employment in the New Year to give them some hope.
You have to know that the kind of person who works at a bookstore is usually someone who is smart, has an offbeat sense of humor and not especially extroverted in most cases. The two employees I spoke with fit this description to a “T” along with an authenticity and sincerity that is nice to find in any person much less a bookstore employee. After asking one of the guys how he was holding up upon learning just last week that their store was closing, he gave the usual “hail fellow” speech with a bravado that he probably really had to work at to make happen and then admitted that he was having a hard time sleeping through the night without having absolute fear wake him up. It was at that point that I handed him my card, told him I was a Coach and that I could help him navigate these waters if he wanted my help. But really any of us can help ourselves and each other through times like this if we’re willing to give a listening ear and some direct eye contact. Doesn’t take a whole lot to help someone feel that they’re not alone.
The way I look at it the big box bookstores, although I love most anything that has to do with books, downsizing and going away do to the e-Book phenom, is really just morphing into something new that we can get into and behind if we are open to it. A few weeks ago I asked a question on LinkedIn “What are three traits you look for in new employees” and one consistent trait that was listed in many of the responses was “adaptability”. I don’t know why that particular trait caught me by surprise, but it did. After some conversations though, I realized how important adaptability is when it comes to our ever changing work force in these times. It means being flexible enough to let go of what we are used to so that we can receive something new. And more than that, the ability to find ways to make yourself fit into a new situation rather than trying to force a new situation to fit you.
It helps me to become very biological at times like these. Remembering the single cell and the splitting of the cell and the splitting of those cells etc. Not much would have become of that first single cell if it hadn’t learned how to split off and “become”. When I look to nature for my answers I can also find tools to soothe me during the time of “becoming” and remember that genetically there are centuries of information inside each cell of my body, mind, and heart that are specifically adapted to help me to adapt. Just little ole amoeba me!
I’m going to focus on survival of the fittest and believe in what is possible. How about you?