How To Combat the 7 Reasons Employees Fight Change

5 business people witness the melting of the wicked witch to illustrate the cartoon of the boss' threat of what happens when change is resisted

Change is a constant in our lives and yet there are few who, if comfortable with their status quo, welcome change wholeheartedly. You would think that we would get used to shifting and adapting to life’s fluctuations. But, as we at LSA observe regularly in our client organizations, change (even when it makes complete sense) is almost always resisted in one way or another. Our challenge as leaders is to minimize the disruption of change so the change initiatives we have decided are necessary for success are accepted and adopted as smoothly as possible.

We believe that the better prepared you are for the objections to change, the better able you are to plan an effective strategy to overcome resistance and welcome employees aboard the bandwagon for change success. Here are seven of the most common reasons employees oppose change:

  1. Fear of the unknown. Many employees will only accept change as positive if the current situation is completely untenable and markedly worse than the prospect of trying something new, different or unknown.
  2. Fear of making the change transition successfully. What will they be asked to do differently? Will they be able to adapt favorably to the new boss, the new responsibilities, the new strategic direction, the new organizational structure or the new skills required?
  3. Unclear benefits, both personally and for the organization. If the drivers for change at the company level are not spelled out in a compelling way or if the benefits to the individual are not persuasive, you can bet that change will be resisted from the beginning.
  4. Lack of confidence that the change will work. If employees doubt that the leadership is fully committed to the change or capable of successful change, there will be resistance. The plan for change must be equal to the challenge of what you are trying to accomplish.
  5. Unwillingness to give up the “tried and true.” The learning curve required to change behaviors can be steep and painful. Many people prefer the “old” comfortable way and will be reluctant to make the effort to try the “new.” Old habits are hard to break and new habits are difficult to sustain.
  6. Disenchantment with too much change. The status quo is often unacceptable, but continuous change can be overwhelming. When there is too much change, you are likely to have more “prisoners” of change than true and devoted converts to the “new way.”
  7. Feeling sidelined and uninformed. Employees who were not involved in the discussions prior to change are apt to feel neglected and as if they have no voice in the organization’s future.

Change management consulting experts know that the best way to combat all of these common objections is inclusion, information and involvement.

  • Inclusion. Invite employees in the strategy and planning stages of change so that they can understand the rationale for change, contribute their perspectives, and feel a sense of ownership. This will increase their commitment to the plan and their motivation to support implementation.
  • Information. Maintain a stream of regular and two-way communications so employees can follow the progress of the initiative, begin to see the positive results and provide feedback. Welcome questions and suggestions for improvement. You will be able to more effectively manage objections and resistance if you are in the middle of the discussion and not kept in the dark when employees are resistant, insecure or apathetic.
  • Involvement. Collaboration is critical to change management success. Make sure everyone knows exactly what their role is in the plan and where others fit as well. Success will depend upon teams working together toward the goal in a cooperative and supportive way.

Share:
Facebook Twitter Google+ Email LinkedIn
Files under:  

Comments are closed.

LSA has been a tremendous asset to my portfolio, both at my current company and my past company. As an HR leader, I am always looking for ways to find external resources that can provide a solution to our management training needs. LSA does that for me. Their solutions are presented in a much more leadership-oriented manner so as to be crisp, business relevant, and easy to apply right back on the job. I will continue to augment our programs using LSA solutions.

Ken Boehm
VP of Human Resources

On behalf of Roche and my staff I would like to sincerely thank you for your help with this. The English as a Second Language (ESL) assessment and coaching that you provided for our team was a great success.

Cam Greig
Associate Director

Roche

Each program is preceded by an assessment of the participants. The course is then designed to fit the specific parameters and needs of the group. The highly interactive delivery is provided by recognized experts in their fields. On the spot coaching is provided during the program and each participant receives individual follow-up after the course. Courses can be delivered in-person or virtually. Given the nature of Cisco’s business and the way we operate, these remote workshops are a must for anyone who joins our company. Their work is eye opening. Great content and fantastic delivery.

Frank J. Kuypers
Business Development Manager

LSA has become the gold standard in team building and management training at Genomic Health! I have a hard time finding facilitators that come close to their level of customization, expertise and experience.

Emily Couey
Director of Human Resources

We value our relationship with LSA Global. We came to LSA because we wanted to improve overall behavioral based interviewing capabilities of our managers to increase the probability of both hiring top talent and future leaders. LSA designed a highly customized solution for our business and culture. We are currently rolling out this solution to our leaders. I would highly recommend LSA Global as a top quality resource.

Rae Phillips
HR Project Manager - Training & Development, PHR

LSA helped change our entire culture around meetings, making them more effective and efficient, thus enabling us to concentrate on driving more business.

Terry Wassman
VP of Human Resources

Here’s a token of my appreciation for ALL your efforts. I’m offering my most sincere appreciation, and it extends to all the folks who made our customized management development programs possible.

Susan Anderson
Workforce Planning Bureau

LSA’s approach and ability to bring the best resources to eBay has been a great asset. They really focus on helping us succeed in any way they can and are very flexible in meeting our management and talent needs.

Mike Normant
Learning & Development

ebay

We recently contacted LSA Global to assist us with a unique training request. We gave LSA a very short deadline and LSA custom designed a training program to meet our exact requirements within the limited time allotted to them. We found their facilitator to be well versed in the subject matter and very credible; the design provided practical and valuable information to our team of managers. I highly recommend LSA Global, particularly in the area of management training.

Julaine K. Souza
Senior Vice President

We partnered with LSA Global to help us invest in our people in the areas of performance coaching, diversity, and inclusion. They focused on helping us succeed and were very flexible in meeting our specific needs. LSA Global exceeded my expectations from a speed, quality, and value standpoint. I would recommend LSA Global to anyone looking for a true business partner.

Anita Luckinbill
Director, Human Resources

I highly recommend LSA Global to anyone who is looking to improve individual or organizational effectiveness through their top quality programs and broad range of expertise.

Greg Pappas
VP of Human Resources

Our company engaged LSA to do a specialized “train the trainer” program, and the consultant’s performance outdid our exceptionally high standards for such a program. Very crucial to the success of this program was the work done upfront to discuss our needs and to interview key members of our organization so that the program specifically met our goals. Our facilitators continue to comment on the success of the program. Thanks also for the follow-up.

Frank Abbott
Chief Financial Officer

I consistently look to LSA Global when I need custom programs put together for my client groups. I can always count on LSA to do a thorough needs analysis and to put together spectacular programs that are well received. Their management development and performance management expertise and professionalism make them one of my top-rated learning and development partners.

Stephanie Webb
HR Program Manager

Rambus

Harmonic has worked with LSA for over 8 years. We have found their partnership extremely beneficial. We recently implemented a Management Development Program that was designed and customized to support our company’s strategic initiative of hiring, building, and retaining key intellectual property and human talent. We worked closely with LSA to target and implement the right solutions with the greatest impact. I would recommend LSA to any company that’s looking for a trusted training and development partner.

Janice Passarello
Director of Human Resources

We have worked with LSA Global for our learning and development needs and have always had great success. They helped us recently with customized Management Workshops that we held for the second time. It was fantastic, and I would highly recommend LSA to anyone that is attempting to get immediate and impactful improvements.

Mary Johnston
HR Manager, BU Radiology Informatics

Evaluate your Performance

Toolkits

Toolkits

Download key published insights and tools from industry experts highlighting best practices in the areas of talent, strategy and culture.

More

Health Checks

Health Checks

Want to know how you stack up against leading organizations?  Receive a complimentary benchmarking analysis courtesy of an LSA Expert.

More

Whitepapers

Whitepapers

Get up to speed on timely solutions critical to your business. Published by LSA Experts based upon client feedback and key industry trends.

More

Methodology

Methodologies

First we identify the key metrics you want to improve. Then we assemble a dedicated team of elite experts who have successfully solved similar problems with similar clients.

More

Blogs

Stay up to do date with the latest information on how we help high growth companies align their culture and talent with strategy.

More

Case Studies

Client Case Studies

Real world consulting and training approaches from LSA projects, providing insights on how your company can outperform the competition.

More