For years I have collected blue and white plates, and for the first few years I lived in my house I had them hanging in my office. When I got married we changed my office into my husband’s office and the plates were taken down. I found them when I was cleaning out a cabinet, and had an idea. I wanted to hang them again. We had a blank wall going down the stairs into our studio. I thought it would be fun to hang them up and enjoy the patterns, beauty and variety of them all. I realized I didn’t have enough plate hangers, so the rest have been ordered. In the mean time I hung the plates I could along the stairwell…and they look fabulous.
As I hung up each plate it made me think of where and when it was acquired, who I was with, and what we were doing. I started collecting some of these plates over twenty years ago having no idea what I would do with them. And here they are again making an important addition to our home. Blue and white is back in our home AND in all sorts of decorating magazines and stores. It is a classic combination that is back in style. It makes me think of all the experiences I have had in my career that have come back to serve me well. Just like fashion and decorating, things that were important about thirty years ago are back in style. It’s like being back in the 1980s remembering what was and seeing it all over again.
Trends come and go in business as well. Organizations centralize, then later decentralize. They down size only to staff back up later. They value general knowledge and people who know a lot about a lot of things, then want experts in certain fields to be the focus. They want elaborate processes, then later want things to be simplified.
Trends come and trends go. Things change all the time, and yet the more they change the more they stay the same. Just like blue and white is back in style, it is certain it will change to something else in a couple years. Organizations change and yet they cycle through the same changes. The challenge is not change, the challenge is being prepared and remembering the lessons you already know. Have faith in what you know and what you learned long ago, and think about how to apply those lessons in a new way. Great ideas are still great ideas even when they need to be applied at a later date.