Organizational Change: 8 Reasons Why People Resist Change

There are eight prevalent causes of resistance to change in real life:

(1) Loss of position or job security within the company

Making adjustments that we perceive as detrimental to our existing situation goes against our nature. This indicates that in an organizational setting, staff members, peers, and managers will fight against administrative and technological changes that result in the elimination or reduction of their job. Their position inside the company is negatively impacted by your adjustment, in their opinion!

Loss of position or job security within the company

It has its place to pressure people to change. However, over time, you’ll notice that your change outcomes suffer if this is the sole strategy you employ. Overusing this strategy can reduce your efficacy in the long run since people will discover both direct and indirect ways to oppose you. Without a well-thought-out change management approach, you’ll encounter strong resistance and organizational attrition.

(2) Ineffectively coordinated (non-reinforcing) reward schemes

It’s a well-known adage in business that managers get what they sow. Stakeholders within an organization will fight change if they do not perceive any benefits. 

I’ll ask managers, “Where is the benefit to staff for implementing your change?” when working with them.

Your team will not be motivated to support your move in the long run if there is no incentive. This frequently means that to support the change you want to achieve, organizational reward systems must be modified in some way. The change does not always have to be significant or expensive. Non-monetary intrinsic rewards are particularly effective job motivators.

(3) Shock and anxiety about the unknown

Your team members will be more fearful the less information they have about the change and how it will affect them. The leading change also means keeping the organization from being caught off guard! Your business must be ready for the transition.

Grapevine rumors fill the hole left by continued two-way communication with you and undermine the transformation initiative. In reality, constant communication is one of your most important resources for dealing with change resistance. It’s not just telling, though! Listening, a crucial component of two-way communication is just as effective.

(4) Peer influence

We are social beings whether we are introverted or extroverted. Stakeholders in an organization will fight against change to uphold their interests.

 Peer influence

This may be seen in some of your team members who feel obligated to oppose your adjustment to defend their coworkers. If you are a senior executive or middle manager, your subordinates may fight against your change initiative to preserve their work groups.

The urge to belong to a group is a strong need in the workplace, as Abraham Maslow emphasized. Some of your team members may oppose your change effort if it endangers these social ties at work.

(5) Mistrustful atmosphere

In an atmosphere of mistrust, meaningful organizational transformation does not take place. Trust entails having confidence in the motives and actions of others. A transformation initiative that was otherwise well-conceived will fail due to a lack of mutual trust.

You’ll have little success if you try to make a change in a setting where the majority of the people you work with distrust one another. If you want better outcomes from your change endeavor, you will need to spend some time re-establishing trust. Trust is a delicate and easily damaged asset.

(6) Internal politics

As a political ploy to “show” that the choice was incorrect, some people reject change. They might oppose the change to demonstrate the incapacity of the change’s initiator. Others might push back since they will have less influence within the corporation. Certain people are dedicated to making the change attempt fail in these situations.

Internal politics

When I work with managers, they occasionally get angry with the political opposition they face from others. Trying to achieve the necessary change can be challenging when faced with political impediments. You should identify your feelings and then take action to overcome the organizational opposition you are encountering. Organizational politics are a reality!

(7) Fear of failure

Sweeping changes at work may make your team members question their capacity to carry out their responsibilities. What is well-known is cozy! Because they are concerned that they won’t be able to adjust to the new work requirements, your team members may be opposing these adjustments.

Fear is a potent motivation that can harden people’s resolve to oppose your change-implementation attempts. You must assist your team members in overcoming these worries if you want your change attempt to be effective.

(8) Poor Implementation Methodology (Lack of tact or poor timing)

Sometimes opposition to change is not caused by what a leader does, but rather by how s/he does it! Because changes are introduced insensitively or at an inappropriate time, there may be excessive resistance.

In other words, even if people support the change you wish to make, they might not support your method of implementation. You’ll need a strategic plan and a thoughtful implementation approach to handle these challenges if you want any big organizational transformation initiative to succeed.

Therefore, when someone claims that people resent change out of necessity, point out that this is a myth. We undergo constant change.

How to Manage Organisational Change?

Recognizing change

The first step in predicting change is for the organization’s executives to analyze the external environment and use their intuition to do so. By anticipating change, management may amplify opportunities and reduce threats posed by forces of change in the marketplace.

With strong anticipatory abilities, management can make the most of resources and seize opportunities for its expansion.

Discovering the Change 

Discovering the Change 

Organizational leaders are responsible for recognizing changes and assessing how best to align their organization’s strategy, structure, systems, employees, and skill sets with external influences such as rivals, customers, conflicts, and other market-related factors.

This necessitates a complex organizational diagnosis against a changing environment. Wise leaders are courageous and forthright enough to confront their vulnerability to strategy changes, opportunities they can capitalize on as a result of the change, and the gap between expected performance and actual performance.

Offering Change

To bring about change, it is imperative to market the change through effective communication to various leaders and employees at all levels. Effective communication is what raises people’s awareness of change and gets them ready to give it their all by committing to it.

Therefore, it is the responsibility of the top leaders to communicate the benefits of change to the organization and, by extension, to the individuals that make up the organization.

Getting Resources Moving for Change

Only when the individuals in charge create a team or sub-team and assemble resources will the introduction of change be successful. The top-level leader must involve those in various positions of authority. Additionally, those with the necessary experience, knowledge, and expertise should be consulted. This solidifies the responsibility of mobilizing resources and directing them in the appropriate direction.

Dismantling Comfort Zones:

The difficulty in implementing change is the critical work of altering people’s mindsets so that they feel at ease maintaining long-standing routines and practices, even when they are misguided. To prevent change, people prefer the status quo. This status-quo seekers’ resistance to changing the status quo is the cause.

Dismantling Comfort Zones

Therefore, the primary responsibility of the lenders is to undermine these comfort zones by fostering and enhancing a sense of urgency. It can be done in a variety of methods. Another strategy to improve organizational goals is to hire outside experts to diagnose the issue and raise the performance level. This is one technique to grow market share or revenue for the organization.

Once more, managers at all levels are expected to constantly examine their perceptions and current behaviors.

Securing the Success of Change

If the change teams and leaders are convinced of early success, it is evidence that the change was successful. This serves as a catalyst and the momentum keeps change initiatives moving ahead. People need to be made aware of this since it encourages a long-lasting commitment to change.

Constant Improvement and Change:

The transformation of an “existing” organization into a “learning” and “creative” organization, where people put out their fresh, original, and creative ideas and share them with others, is necessary for the effective implementation of change.

Making the organizational structure more flexible and easy to navigate can help this process by allowing individuals to communicate freely, honestly, and immaculately at all levels and places within those layers.

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