Resistance To Change
Resistance to change in the workplace is down to people’s perceptions of what it will involve. These perceptions can be divided into:
1. How fearful people are about a change to their current circumstances
2. How comfortable people are with their current circumstances
Comfort levels are the things that make it hard for people to change and ultimately reinforce their resistance. People gain comfort from predictability and this can be linked to their regular routines, personal preferences, sense of security, connections and relationships that they take for granted.
Loss or change to any aspects that bring a person comfort will in a lot people manifest itself as fear. Fear takes many forms and can be general or very specific depending on the individual person and the change initiative being introduced. Examples include: fear of failure, fear of loss of control, power or support, fear of the unknown, fear of what a change will mean for them.
Those people who have high levels of comfort and extreme fear are the individuals who most strongly resist change in the workplace. This resistance is magnified if nothing is done to communicate and explain the impact of change. If a person only views the change from their individual perspective they are less likely to have a belief in the initiative being proposed.
Countering resistance to change in the workplace always comes down to how it is managed and led. Employees need to be shown the bigger picture, they have to hear the vision and understand the benefits for the organisation in order to have belief in the result of change.