How to Get Others to Notice You Changed

You changed – now make it count

Marcia Reynolds gives 5 suggestions to show people you changed so they can examine their assumptions. 

You changed

You changed – show them!

One of the most frustrating habits of long-time friends is how they see you as you were years ago. Unfortunately, managers and team members do the same thing, neglecting to notice you changed. Not only is this oversight frustrating, it can hinder instead of support your growth.

There is a tendency for people to create and then cast in stone a picture of who you are, what you like and don’t like, and what you will say and do in various situations. They don’t notice when your behaviour and preferences change.Tweet this Their static assumptions constrain your interactions and limit your opportunities.

Read: 10 ways to change your attitude to challenges

Assumptions are normal bad habits

We all make assumptions. We have to size up situations quickly to determine if there is a threat. Also, there is so much going on in our lives that the idea of taking time to determine if someone has changed in the past week or two seems silly. It is easier to act on memories than to listen with curiosity to someone familiar.Tweet this

Read: 12 ways to change a habit – start small

Because behavior is normal doesn’t mean it is good.

We should all develop a practice of slowing down and appreciating the people we know. When active, we change all the time as we learn, grow and gain new insights with age. We strengthen our relationships by letting people grow up.

Getting people to notice the new you

You changed - help them see the new you

You changed – help them see the new you

So how do you get others to notice the changes you’ve worked hard to make? I found a lot articles on the Internet telling people how to question their own assumptions, but nothing that teaches how to get people to question the assumptions they are making about you. I wrote the following five suggestions to help you fill in this gap.

You can use all five in one conversation or separately. They may feel awkward at first, but the behaviours will become habits if you practice them over time.

5 suggestions to show you changed

  1. Model the behaviour you want. If you want people to notice how you have changed, you need to acknowledge their efforts at changing as well. Duncan Coombe makes a number of good suggestions in his HBR blog post, See Colleagues as They Are, Not as They Were. Practice seeing people as if meeting them for the first time to discover what is changing or what you may have never noticed. In a previous post, I shared tips on how to shift from expecting to being curious. Not only will people appreciate that you notice what they are working on, it simply feels good to “be seen.”
  2. Be clear with your requests. If someone doesn’t notice that you have changed your preferences or behaviour, you can ask them to notice without making them wrong. For example, you could say,

“You are right that I used to like those things and acted that way. I’ve changed over the past year. Can I share with you what I now like and what I’m doing differently?”

“I agree with you that the way I used to handle these situations wasn’t effective. That is why I’ve worked hard to change my habits. Let me share with you the things I’m trying and the results I’m getting.”

“Have you noticed I’ve been (showing up on time, including people more in meetings, listening better, acting less defensively, etc)? I am working on changing my behaviour. When you don’t notice how I’ve changed, I feel as if you aren’t supporting my growth. I would appreciate if you would acknowledge the efforts I’m making to improve.”

  1. Tell the story about what prompted the change. Tell people what inspired you to change your behaviour. Stories make a stronger impression than just telling people what they don’t see. Your reason for changing will more likely change their mind than the fact that you have changed.
  2. Get them to talk about their own changes. Admit that you might not see the changes other people are working to make. Ask them what they are working on so you can notice and support their efforts, too.
  3. Ask for their help in your continuous growth. Sharing your goals and asking for their support might feel uncomfortable, but it is a good way to direct their attention to who you are today instead of what you did yesterday.

Let’s practice seeing what’s new in each other every day.

Originally posted on Out Smart Your Brain on 27th April 2016

 Have you thought about your career?  Have our Career Reflections Worksheets delivered right into your in-box and use the last days of summer to think about your next steps.  Print them out in the old school way or keep them open on your phone. Use them as a guide to give your thoughts some structure.

Invest some time in yourself! Don’t wait until it’s too late!

[contact-form-7 404 "Not Found"]
3Plus, Career, Communication, Personal & Professional Development, Relationships
Marcia Reynolds
Web | Email | Twitter |
Dr. Marcia Reynolds, president of Covisioning LLC, is author of The Discomfort Zone: How Leaders Turn Difficult Conversations into Breakthroughs. She weaves together three areas of expertise: organizational change, coaching and emotional intelligence to help leaders have powerful conversations.

Leave a Reply

Found that interesting? Learn more about our services
Individual services
Make your dreams a reality with a professional evaluation of your career to date.
more info
Corporate services
The evidence is in. More women in your company can deliver 35% greater financial returns. (Catalyst)
more info
Upcoming events
Currently we don't have upcoming events
Download and listen free podcasts
Why all women need a strong LinkedIn profile
Free Download

Data on women on LinkedIn has always been hard to get and analyse, but some new information sheds light on how women use the platform differently to their male colleagues and what those differences mean. You will find out why you need a strong LinkedIn profile.

It has always been difficult to identify women on LinkedIn because it’s not possible to do a search based on gender. Any efforts to track women on LinkedIn specifically, involve complex Boolean strings involving pronouns or searching via women’s clubs, universities and networks. So any analysis has always been more anecdotal around perceptions and personal experience, rather than data based. However research from 2017  using LinkedIn member profile data for members in the United States over the past 12 months. Published on the LinkedIn blog it supports pretty much what we already know about women on LinkedIn.

LinkedIn  is the main professional data base used globally by hiring managers and recruiters, yet women continue to engage less than their male colleagues, putting themselves at a distinct professional disadvantage. Now we have some facts and figures as well as tips and tricks to persuade  you to up your game. All women have to have a strong LinkedIn profile. No ifs and buts.


How to Get Noticed by Head Hunters & Recruiters
Free Download

In this power coaching podcast, we’re going to tackle one of the questions asked multiple times a week by active job seekers and passive candidates.

How can I get noticed by head hunters and recruiters and connect with them?

In this short power coaching podcast Dorothy Dalton shares some tips and tricks to make sure that you are always on the radar of the recruitment and search specialists who can be most helpful to you. With extensive experience in executive search and corporate HR Dorothy has placed, coached and trained thousands of men and women to career success. As a career coach she has a deep understanding of the job search market and what job seekers need to do to position themselves to they are easily found.

As CEO of 3Plus she also has deep experience of the challenges women face in the workplace. Sadly because women tend not to create career strategies they can be vulnerable when it comes to dealing with change. Regular transitions become career crises. In this short session you will learn some simple tips and tricks to make sure you are on the radar of key recruitment specialists in your sector, geography or function.  It’s not rocket science.





One of the most puzzling things about working in executive search is that people and I say this reluctantly particularly women fail to plan ahead. You’ve heard me say before that only 5% of women have a career strategy. This means that they are not prepared for any emergencies until they become a crisis.


Goal setting tips to boost your career
Free Download

The happiest people are those that really love their jobs. Those that don’t, dread Sunday nights and the upcoming work week. So how do you get to a place where you look forward to a new week of doing what satisfies you? You’ll have to either learn to love your current role, or make a commitment to pursue your dream job. Use these goal setting tips to help you get to where you want to be.

Some women choose the latter, and to do so you’ll have to set career goals to get where you want to be. So make sure you have a detailed plan on how to land a job that you will tick all the boxes.

The majority of women choose to stay in their own organizations and even then you still need to have goals, not just KPis set by your manager. But even if you do see your career developing within your current business it’s still important to set goals.

Many women struggle with career planning and creating a career strategy which can lead to problems. This makes them vulnerable to and sort of challenge which can moprh into a full blown career crisis. Some simple steps to plan and prepare can help avoid this.

Take a look at these goal setting tips to help boost your career and set you on the right path.

Lewis Carroll  said

If you don’t know where you are going any road will get you there.”

Research shows that only about 5% of women create career goals and a career strategy. This can have a negative impact on your career progression. It means you are reactive not proactive and career glitches can morph into full blown crises. It puts women at a clear disadvantage to men.

Learn these simple goal setting tips to boost your career and protect and prepare you for all eventualities. If these goal setting tips make you think that you could use some further help,  contact us immediately.


When Does Female Rivalry Turn into Sabotage
Free Download

There’s a lot of stuff written on social media about  female rivalry and competition between women. Some of it makes sense and some of it is confusing. Organizations are pyramids with fewer roles at the top than at the bottom. It is inevitable that at some level, as more and more women are in the talent pipeline, at some point they will be in competition with other women.

Many would say that women aren’t competitive. I would suggest re-framing that. I think it’s more accurate to say they are not as competitive in the workplace as men. We have also been made to feel guilty about being competitive. We need to get over that.  Here are the reasons:

  1. The male nature of corporate culture makes it a disincentive to compete
  2. Women don’t want to compete because  prescribed male goals are not attractive enough for them. “Work 14 hour days, not see my partner or family … get sick.. thanks.. I’ll pass”
  3. Women don’t know how to compete in the workplace. They are new arrivals on the corporate competition scene and lack practise.
  4. Women experience gender blow back when they do compete, from both men and women
  5. Women have been raised to think that competing with other women is not empowering them. As more women enter the talent pipeline that is just nonsense.

Learn some insights from Annabel Kaye, Employment Law Expert about how it’s OK to be competitive and the danger zone when it can turn into sabotage. Understand the benefits of mutual support and how all women can profit from having strong strategic allies, role models and mentors.