Saturday, June 29, 2019

Review: Who Moved My Cheese?

Who Moved My Cheese? Who Moved My Cheese? by Spencer Johnson
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

As part of a project I'm running, it was suggested that I pick this book up to help address the change management associated with rolling out a new system or a new way of doing things. I've gotten the suggestion a few times but tended to put it off so I finally decided to follow through and read (or listen) to this book one afternoon.

The book or version I got begins with a group of people getting together for their post-reunion meal. They are talking about how much has changed for each of them and were surprised by people's comments. One person ends up telling the "who moved my cheese?" story to them all and afterwards they get back together to discuss it. The book finishes up with some notes from the author, which I would recommend just skipping to come up with your own thoughts, unless you want to hear about his other books.

So, the story is fairly simple, which is probably why it appeals to such a broad audience. You can definitely get different elements out that can work for you, your situation, or your company in general. Basically there is a group of 2 mice and 2 humans in a maze. They wander around and find cheese. After finding the cheese, they each react slightly differently, and that continue on when the cheese is no longer there.

What did I get out out of the story? Basically, people react to change differently. Some people are always on the lookout and ready to adapt. Some people stay in denial, complaining and hoping it will go back to the way it was. Then there are the people in between who may quickly or not so quickly adapt, but they ultimately do. How they get there is different for everyone, but there were some tips and tricks peppered in as well (visualizing and taking the risks, etc.). The biggest takeaway is the most recognized quote, "What would you do if you weren't afraid?"

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