Resistance To Change - Motivation Theory

1. One of the most well-documented findings is that organizations and their members resist change.

• It provides a degree of stability and predictability to behavior.

• There is a definite downside to resistance to change. It hinders adaptation and progress.


2. Resistance to change does not necessarily surface in standardized ways.

• Resistance can be overt, implicit, immediate, or deferred.

• It is easiest for management to deal with resistance when it is overt and immediate.


3. Implicit resistance efforts are more subtle—loss of loyalty to the organization, loss of motivation to work, increased errors or mistakes, increased absenteeism due to “sickness”— and hence more difficult to recognize.


4. Similarly, deferred actions cloud the link between the source of the resistance and the reaction to it.

  • A change may produce what appears to be only a minimal reaction at the time it is initiated, but then resistance surfaces weeks, months, or even years later.

  • Reactions to change can build up and then explode seemingly totally out of proportion.

  • The resistance was deferred and stockpiled, and what surfaces is a cumulative response.

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