5th Reason for Resistance to Change: Over Protectiveness of the Status Quo

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Six Change Approaches > Best Practices > 5th Reason for Resistance to Change: Over Protectiveness of the Status Quo

5th Reason for Resistance to Change: Over Protectiveness of the Status Quo
Robin Chapman, Consultant, United Kingdom, Member
I am managing a change program for a voluntary organisation for people with learning disabilities whose over caring attitude has developed over decades. The necessary change needs to happen for the organisation's survival.
I think there is a 5th reason for the resistance to change. Something around over protectiveness of the status quo.

Included in Low Tolerance?
David Wilson, Manager, Canada, Premium Member
Many people take the view that if the organization is working, so why change it? These people and their organizations will resist change if they see the status quo as working. You need to show them why change is necessary. If you cannot convince senior executives and a core group of employees (15% or more of the organization), the change will probably fail. I see this issue as being covered by reason number three.

There's a Need to Identify with the Change
thelma g aranda, Professor, Mexico, Member
When a company wants to implement some change or a new system, the project leader should first work for human resources to see the benefits we will get from the change. Also people must first become aware of the change and identify with it. Otherwise the implementation may fail, even when the system is excellent.

Strong Protectiveness of Status Quo
Zuzana Daniello, Member
I agree with all your comments... But I'm not really sure how to realize change in a situation where it is announced from the top and the workload increases dramatically...
How to motivate staff in this case, when they have the feeling of being overworked already?

Reduce Resistance by Preparing for Change
David Wilson, Manager, Canada, Premium Member
Organizations should examine their change readiness prior to any organizational change. You may want to review "Leading Change" by John Kotter and The Leadership Challenge by James Kouzes and Barry Posner.
I would also suggest employees and managers should be consulted prior to implementing any change, as involved participants may be more ready to accept new initiatives. Change needs employee motivation and engagement.

Over Protectiveness of the Status Quo: a 5th Category of Resistance?
Jaap de Jonge, Editor, Netherlands
@David Wilson: I agree with Robin Chapman that there can be situations where people honestly perceive and believe they need to protect the status quo because in their perception the current situation is really good.
This does not necessarily mean they have a low tolerance for change. We should also not automatically dismiss the possibility that these people may be right :-)
Certainly when communicating with them about the need for change (prior to the change) it would be adviseable to start with taking their objections seriously. Otherwise they will automatically resist any change and as a change manager you would then have created the resistance yourself.

Change - the 5th Dimension
David Wilson, Manager, Canada, Premium Member
Hi Jaap:
I agree with you and Robin that employee suggestions and recommendations (e.g., concerns) should be treated seriously. If people are not involved and actively engaged, the result could be costly, especially when people leave the organization, or customer service is impacted. Investing in employees by listening to their ideas typically benefits the organization.

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