I’m typing using a new keyboard and everything I used to be good at now sucks.
Not everything actually, just something I used to be really good at.
The keyboard is what’s called a 3D keyboard, which contours the keys so that your fingers have to move minimally to hit all of the keys you typically type with. Further, important editing keys (like backspace, delete, etc.) are all shifted to your thumbs, which are far more dexterous than your pinky fingers.
The changes are small and minute. For example, I keep hitting V instead of C, because the keys are just slightly shifted over from the muscle memory I have.
Instead of hitting “.”, I keep hitting “[“. And instead of hitting a comma, I keep jumping down to a new line because I’m now hitting the downwards arrow key.
This is infuriating. Everything that used to feel fast and effective to me now feels slow and clunky.
It’s not just the fact that I’m learning something new that is infuriating — it’s that I’m now terribly clumsy at something that I used to feel highly effective at.
This experience is a perfect analog to the experience of transformation in general.
I want to throw out this new keyboard and return to the key layout that I know, because it’s known to me.
I’ll be more efficient — not because it’s actually a more efficient approach, but because it’s familiar.
In the short run, we often complain and get frustrated about leadership and transformation, because it feels inefficient. We give up, concluding things like “It’s not so bad the way I used to do things anyhow… Why bother trying to shift?”
It’s really important that we acknowledge this truth, instead of growing increasingly frustrated because we just don’t seem to be able to get it.
Without acknowledging the fundamental inefficiency in transformation, we will inevitably conclude we’re wasting our time and return to what is known and familiar.
In the short term, it will almost always be more efficient to stick with what you already know.
That doesn’t mean it’s not worth the effort to transform.