Resistance to Change: Part 1

Resistance to Change

Employee “resistance to change” is often an excuse for the failure of a change initiative. But instead of stubbornness, what if this reaction is a natural response, one grounded in human nature? If so, it finally provides us, not with an excuse, but with a behavioral explanation for a reaction that that is as common as change itself.

denialResistance is a word that implies active and intentional effort. There is the implication of stubborn and noncompliant activity that is determined to undermine some other activity. We often hear the term “the resistance” used to denote a military or civil disobedient group that is attempting to over-throw a more established group. It involves willful intent.

That may or may not be the intent of employees who sabotage the organizational change initiative—even when they acknowledge a need for the change. The reaction of employees to change, instead, might be a muted form of mourning for something that was being replaced by the change. (to be continued…)

This is a repeat Blog from July 2012