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.

In the Next Generation Management Development courses, I was trained with skills and tools that have made me and my team more productive, motivated, and successful at communicating with other departments.

 

Kevin Ashman
Firmware Engineering Supervisor

LSA’s Employee Engagement Consulting and Survey work has provided critical visibility into: how well our people are holding up under the general economic environment, as well as, the specific challenges that face biotechnology companies in their efforts to discover and develop new medicines; their level of alignment and commitment to XOMA’s Vision and mission critical strategies; how leadership practices and management systems support an environment that engender commitment, and the specific actions that our leaders can take to improve on areas that are important to our people. I highly recommend LSA’s employee engagement solutions.

Chris Wells
Vice President, HR and IT

I’ve partnered with LSA Global at two companies now, and I consider them a valuable and trusted training and consulting resource. They recommended just the right solution to address our management development needs and have wonderful facilitators that match YuMe’s culture and style of our management team. I would highly recommend LSA Global to any company wanting to deliver quality learning solutions with a valuable learning and development partner.

Maya Paul
HR Director

We signed up with LSA early on–as their 22nd Member! Since then, our organization’s learning needs have increased and decreased and increased again with the changing times. The beauty of the LSA business model is its flexibility…when we needed to supplement our own internal resources, we used LSA services knowing that we could depend on the outstanding quality of the leadership development and management training programs they provide.

Margie Bunting
HR Manager

PalmSource has found our relationship with LSA extremely beneficial. We worked closely with LSA to customize the right Management Training Program solution to meet our unique business needs. LSA is a quality organization, one that I’d recommend to any company looking for a first class training and consulting partner.

Ken Boehm
Vice President of Human Resources

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

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 helped us design and deliver a blended learning solution for our leaders to help drive our growth plans in a way that aligned with our specific culture and values. LSA understood our business, had deep expertise in the content areas, tailored the programs to fit our specific needs, and delivered great results. They constantly strive to deliver business impact and align their solutions with our business initiates, culture, and performance management systems. I highly recommend them to anyone looking to take their leaders to the next level.”

Beth A. Taylor
Vice President of Human Resources

Thoratec

What a refreshing change from the half-baked psycho-babble you normally get from “training” organizations. LSA gives you the assistance you need to define and reach your goal, and then they give you a results driven plan – not just a temporary fix. They are great to work with, and even more importantly, they “get it!”

David Fiano
Vice President Human Resources

Working with LSA Global has proven to be extremely valuable and worthwhile. LSA understands our business, has deep expertise in content areas, and tailors the programs to deliver great results. The facilitator was extremely knowledgeable about Working Globally with India and her energy and passion made the session interesting, fun, and enjoyable for all that attended. The participants walked away extremely pleased along with highly useful practices and tools. I would highly recommend LSA Global to any company that has partners or offices in India.

Glenn McGillivray
Human Resources Business Partner

Intuit

LSA provided top notch solutions right when and how we needed them. They exceeded my expectations from a speed, quality, and cost standpoint. I recommend them to anyone looking for a true business partner in the Learning and Development arena. The breadth and depth of their expertise has helped us hit tight deadlines across multiple projects.

Fortune 500 Financial Services Company
Director of Infrastructure & Technology

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 have worked with other training companies and found it to be more of a seller/buyer relationship than one of matching the right expertise to our business issues. That’s what LSA does – ask the hard questions, listen, and understand our business needs. We receive the benefit of their expertise from assistance with personal development plans to enhancing team performance, to looking at enterprise-wide challenges. It’s all about helping our business succeed as we grow. Right now, LSA is providing great ideas, a fresh approach, and valuable guidance as we develop our management team and accelerate our client relationship management results.

Kristin Westland-Kaune
Director, Team Development

VNUS Medical has been very pleased with the effective management development programs that LSA Global has delivered for us over the last four years. The programs have been universally facilitated by experienced and best in class instructors. The knowledge gained by our management team has been put into practice very quickly. VNUS is very happy to be working in partnership with LSA because they consistently deliver excellent programs that receive exceptional feedback from our management team.

Cindee Van Vleck
Director Human Resources

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

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