Friday, December 7, 2012

People Do Not Resist All Change (Video)

As I argued in a prior post, too many change experts (including some academic researchers) view resistance to change as a universally negative behavior.

A Google or YouTube search of 'resistance to change' reveals a great many videos.  It is difficult to determine which videos are credible and which are snake oil.

While I'm not smart enough to judge each video, I can vouch for videos that are based on sound theory.  I'm taking a bit of a risk here because I'm not going to stake my reputation of the validity and reliability of Goldratt's theory of constraints.  The first half dozen journal articles I read were just theoretical arguments using no real data.

Nonetheless, the video makes a very clear argument that people do not resist all change:

Goldratt made this video in the 2008-9 timeframe.

I am not sure whether his thinking evolved or whether other people misinterpret his work.  A journal article published in '01 hooked me with a title claiming the TOC could assist CM.  Then the author cites Kanter and creates the dreaded "why people resist change" table as if it a comprehensive list:

The only mistake is the title.  The list is not incorrect, only incomplete.  It should read something like clinical or social factors causing resistance to change.  

Ford & Ford (2009) defined resistance to change from three perspectives:  
1.  mechanistic, 
2.  social, and 
3.  conversational.  

In the mechanistic perspective, resistance is a natural, everyday, neutral phenomenon that is a product of interaction.  On the contrary, the social perspective treats resistance not an everyday phenomenon, but as one that is detrimental, often viewed in others, but seldom viewed in one's self.  Finally, the conversational perspective posits that resistance to change occurs when individuals make choices (distinctions), assertions, and declarations about what to change and what not to change.


Ford, J. D., & Ford, L. W.  (2009), Resistance to change: A reexamination and extension, in R. W. Woodman, W. A. Pasmore, A. B. (Rami) Shani (Eds.), Research in Organizational Change and Development (Volume 17) (pp.211-239).  Bingley, UK:  Emerald Group Publishing Limited.

Mabin, V. J., Forgeson, S., & Green, L. (2001). Harnessing resistance: Using the theory of constraints to assist change management. Journal of European Industrial Training, 25(2), 168-191.


Post a Comment

Template developed by Confluent Forms LLC; more resources at BlogXpertise