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Resistance to Change and how HR can fix it

Resistance to Change and how HR can fix it

Think of a situation when we get transferred and have to shift our houses. How do we feel about it? What thoughts go in our mind?

Similar is the situation in an organization whenever an attempt to change is made, be it big a change as mergers or small ones like realignment in the sales department.

Change is alterations/additions to the current state of matter or situation to get something new, which can help in bringing about required results.

We/people at workplace can react in below mentioned possible ways when they come across a change:

• Anger
• Uncertainty
• Fear
• Disbelief
• Acceptance
• Denial

According to Dave Ulrich, change management isn’t restricted exclusively to HR. Line Managers are the owners of change while HR can be seen as its architect, facilitator and designer.

In this regards, there are four important roles which HR can play in bringing about the change and thereby reducing probability of resistance.

• Change owner/leader: HR Director/Head HR of an organization can initiate a particular change taking entire ownership of designing and implementing the change. For example, development of a new channel of work in an organization.

• Change specialist/educator: Here organization takes help of a specialist who studies the current process/work environment and lays down structure, processes and skills required to bring about change. This can be done with help of workshops, activities etc. For example, consultant helping an organization to move from current gut based interview mechanism to BEI models.

• Change advisor: This is the case where HR BPs take part in restructuring/realigning the sales team. They act as a constant support designing, implementing change and showing them the path to get the change right.

• Change participant: Here HR is part of the changing environment where they too get affected by it. They can lay down expectation, understand problems, and forecast theirs and other’s reactions to change.

It is very important that organization gives equal importance to pre planning, planning and actions intended to be achieved after change. Often we have come across situations where we talk only of results and forget to bother about the inputs required to get that particular change. HR professionals need to focus on below important factors as inputs which will help in smooth change/transition:

• Ensuring the current environment/situation requires change

• Making people aware/convinced about benefits of change

• Designing structured process of change where people are made accountable for their inputs to bring about desired outputs

• Reinforcing the need and requirement of change continuously in minds of people with understanding the relevance of change where people are convinced that the same is for their better future and development of effective tools and processes to execute the same along with efficient HR reinforcement in the minds of people, we shall be successful in minimizing the resistance in minds of people regarding a CHANGE !!

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4 Responses to "Resistance to Change and how HR can fix it"

  1. BCNigam says:

    Absolutely right….but sometimes, change is welcome, especially in two situations. One, when inertia sets in, which reduces the enthusiasm and othe,r when the present is pinching. HR personals should also look for right moment or create one in which change will be welcome and well accepted, with lesser efforts..

    • Anna says:

      I like this article but I am curious to understand this concept at a very micro level. Let me explain – it’s like this I have this work that I do on regular basis and have been doing it since 3 years now, I have this new boss who has jumped in and wants me to do things in a different way ! I am so sick of it that I don’t like my work which used to enjoy a few years back !!! How can you overcome this? Mess it is ! Can you help?

  2. Anna says:

    I like this article but I am curious to understand this concept at a very micro level. Let me explain – it’s like this I have this work that I do on regular basis and have been doing it since 3 years now, I have this new boss who has jumped in and wants me to do things in a different way ! I am so sick of it that I don’t like my work which used to enjoy a few years back !!! How can you overcome this? Mess it is ! Care to help ?

  3. Anna says:

    Mr. Nigam can you help me ? @BcNigam

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