Skip to content
PD Certification

Strategies to Minimise Adverse Effects of Change

Why do people resist change?

The main reasons why people are resisting towards changes in their environment are:

  • An individuals’ predisposition toward change
  • Surprise and fear of the unknown
  • Climate of mistrust, lack of information
  • Fear of failure
  • Loss of status and/or job security
  • Peer pressure
  • Disruption of cultural traditions and/or group relationships
  • Personality conflicts
  • Lack of tact and/or poor timing
  • Non-reinforcing reward systems,“what’s in it for me” is not made clear
  • Past success, no motivation to change

Overcoming resistance to change

Strategies for overcoming resistance to change are:

  • Education and communication – Usable when there is a lack of information or inaccurate information and analysis
  • Participation and involvement – Usable when the initiators do not have all the information they need to design the change and others have considerable power to resist – Facilitation and support
  • Usable when people are resisting because of adjustment problems
  • Negotiation and agreement – Usable when someone will clearly lose out in a change and where that someone has considerable power to resist
  • Manipulation and co-optation – Usable when other tactics will not work or are too expensive
  • Explicit and implicit coercion – Usable when speed is essential and where the change initiators possess considerable power

People are ‘unwilling’ when they need to change a habit. Something that worked for them before doesn’t need any change in their opinion. So to be sure that the wanted change will set you need to overcome the people’s resistance. If you don’t monitor and guide this part of your change process the changes are almost 100% that your change will not set in the organisation and be reversed to the old way of working.

What are your strategies to minimise adverse effects of Change?
Not subscribed yet? Do it NOW! 

Author: Rieco de Jong (All Rights Reserved by the author).
Source: Original text, based upon first hand knowledge and the following bibliography:

· Atkinson, S., Martin, E., & Hinksman, S. (2010). CHAMPS2 – Realising Transformational Change. London: The Stationery Office (TSO).
· Mintzberg, H. (1990). The Design School: Reconsidering the Basic Premises of Strategic Management. Strategic Management Journal, Vol. 11 , 171-195.
· Prosci. (2012, June 24). Change Management Learning Center. Retrieved June 24, 2012, from Change Management Learning Center:
· Rance, S. (2011). ITIL Service Transition (2011 Edition ed.). London: The Stationary Office (TSO).
· Slack, N., Chambers, S., & Johnson, R. (2001). Operations Management (3rd edition ed.). London: FT Prentice-Hall.
· Software Engineering Institute, Carnegie Mellon. (2012). Software Engineering Instittue, Carnegie Mellon. Retrieved February 2012, from
· Stassen, R. (2006). Handleiding positiebepaling op basis van het INK-managementmodel ‘Ondernemingen’.Zaltbommel: INK.
Image: © de Jong Consultancy
Help us to improve it: how-to, discussion.