Try a new flavor !!

You may know this, or you may not, but I work in HR for a restaurant company – LaRosa’s, Inc.  It’s a pizzeria that is truly an iconic company !!  We’ve been in business since 1954 and we’re doing well.  To be in business that long and stay relevant, you have to have some staples mixed in with new innovations to keep things fresh.

What does this have to do with HR ??  – EVERYTHING !!

Just recently, we began adding the new Coke Freestyle machine at our locations.  It allows you to get a drink in over 100+ options.  (My favorite is raspberry Coke Zero).  When the machines go into a store, there is a lot of buzz and experimentation.  We also do our best to let you know of new options and flavors for you to enhance your dining experience.

With over 100 choices, you’d think that people would jump right in and try every flavor they could.  Even if it was only to eliminate the ones they didn’t quite like for the ones they do.  Amazingly, many people venture out to drink . . . Coke and Diet Coke.

This isn’t “right” or “wrong,” it’s just that people are used to the norms in their lives and change is more difficult than we think.  All this machine is doing is offering something you already like (a soda or pop) with new alternatives.  Doesn’t seem like a big jump, but it truly is.

When I hear HR folks tout that they are “change agents,” I get concerned.  I’ve met very few HR folks who are comfortable with change, which is the same as our employees.  Change is difficult, but what we’ve missed along the way is that “change” occurs daily whether we want it to or not.

HR tends to think change happens in broad strokes or inventive initiatives.  In reality change occurs most of the time in small, incremental bits.  This tends to be much more sustainable than making huge strides.

So, where are you in this change continuum?  Are you someone who drives change?  Are you someone who shepherds change as it goes along?  Or, are you someone who cleans up after changes happen?

I propose that you be on the leading edge of change in your area, your profession and at your company.  HR has the ability to be innovative, creative and sustainable.  However, we need to understand that change is a vital part of what we do.  Businesses change and we need to be there in stride with them.

So, this week try a new flavor !!  Step out a bit from what you normally do and try something new.  Make “change” a regular part of who you are and what you do in HR !!  I think you’ll like it !!



3 thoughts on “Try a new flavor !!”

  1. There is a good book by Barry Schwartz called “The Paradox of Choice,” which indicates in a number of arenas, the increasing number of options lead not to experimentation, but to consumer dissatisfaction and increased fear and regret about the choice being made. Perhaps if there were a lot fewer options, people would be more willing to try something new.

  2. Steve, I love it! And I can relate. My FroYo shoppe, SoYo, offers 15 different flavors of FroYo and it’s amazing to me how many people go straight to the Vanilla or Chocolate. I now see them, however, venturing out with toppings. While they started with something simple like brownies or strawberries, these same “traditionalists” are trying things like butterfinger, chocolate sunflower seeds, pop rocks, and mochi! Before long, they will be trying my original FroYo creations likes Bananakin or English Trifle!

    Indeed, change is hard – you may remember you helped me with my very first blog post about that very subject! As HR professionals, we are there to guide and support employees through change…one pop rock at a time!

    Cheers to you – and thanks for the time you give to our profession!

  3. Hi Steve…finally catching up after a hectic week of travel. Love this post, and yes, you and I are on the same page!! Great stuff as always…keep it coming!

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