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Natural disasters teach us an important lesson about change: It’s always up ahead.
Natural disasters teach us an important lesson about change: It’s always up ahead.

Don’t let change be the boss

Original content by ChangeDriver

What can we learn from the past to help us prepare for coming changes?

Japan is known as one of the best-prepared countries in the world when it comes to disaster response. However, in 2011 an earthquake followed by a tsunami struck northeastern Japan that challenged its ability to cope. Over 18,000 people are listed as dead or missing as a result of the disaster.

The last time a tsunami of this magnitude struck Japan was more than 1,000 years ago. Since that time, Japan has become a modern, developed nation and relies on nuclear power to meet part of its energy needs.

The tsunami damaged three reactors, including the Fukushima plant, located on the northeast coast. The severity of the damage at Fukushima led Japanese regulators to raise the level of nuclear emergency to that of Chernobyl.

The 2011 earthquake was so powerful that it shifted the Earth on its axis by redistributing mass. It was like putting a dent in a spinning top. It also shortened the length of a day by a microsecond.

Japan has learned many lessons from the 2011 natural disaster and acted on them. They have taken action in anticipation of what may come. There are now higher seawalls, more effective public education, evacuation protocols and much stricter safety requirements for nuclear reactors. As a result, only nine of Japan’s 42 reactors are currently in operation.

Despite their inevitability, natural disasters teach us an important lesson about change: It’s always up ahead – even if it’s happened before.

We can prepare for change or let change be the boss. What has your organization learned from any past crises to prepare better for its future? We’d love to hear from you.

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