Managing Resistance to Change

2743 words 11 pages
While some resistance to change is inevitable, most resistance can be managed and actually is beneficial. In order to manage resistance to change, managers must first understand what attributes to the resistance and how the resistance is beneficial. Resistance to change can be healthy, because it forces you to check your assumptions and clarify what you are doing, as well as how you are planning to achieve it. The many reasons for resistance are explored and practical solutions, based on findings of research studies, are offered. How to Manage Resistance to Change

It was once stated by Gerard Egan (1988) that there are three certain things in life: death, taxes, and resistance to change. David Foote (2001) is quoted as
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The first action of education and communication is probably one of the best and easiest ways to overcome resistance to change. The key to the success in any situation is to inform and educate the employees as much as possible beforehand, as well as throughout the entire transition. By communicating with employees they are able to understand the logic and reasons for the change, not to mention they are empowered with knowledge, which in turn helps to ease some of the uncertainty. When an employee understands how a change will directly affect the organization, their role within it, and why the change is needed, they will accept the change significantly better than those who do not receive this information. In order for the education and communication action to be effective, there must be a mutual trust and credibility between managers and employees, and information should be dispersed through many avenues: memos, group meetings, reports, and even one-on-one meetings with affected employees.
The second action mentioned by Robbins and Coulter (2007) is to encourage and allow employees to participate and become involved in the change. By doing so, employee knowledge about the innovation lessens their fear factor, as well as making workers feel needed and appreciated. When employees are involved in the change effort they are more likely to accept the change rather than resist it because they feel their input, experience, and knowledge is appreciated and


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