Exclusive Content & Downloads from ASQ

A Way to Anchor Change

Summary: Successful improvement activities need to reduce organizational resistance and anchor the changes so the resistance does not return. Typically, workers faced with organizational changes will go through a process similar to the stages of grief posited by Elisabeth K├╝bler-Ross: first they will be indifferent to the change, then they will oppose it, then they will consider it, and finally they will cooperate to bring about the change. Depending on the leader-member relationship, the structure of the tasks leading to the change and the power position of the leader, a leader may find a task-motivated or a relationship-motivated leadership approach will be most effective at creating and maintaining change. Likewise, the best methods for overcoming resistance will vary situationally, but they include two-way communication with employees, group participation, education and training, and incentives. Concealment and coercion may seem like expedient methods for overcoming resistance, ! but they have strong negative consequences. If unexpected resistance is encountered, employers should stop and identify the source of that resistance rather than pushing ahead with the change initiative regardless. Two brief case studies demonstrate different approaches to change and resistance management.

Anyone with a subscription, including Site and Enterprise members, can access this article.

Other Ways to Access content:

Join ASQ

Join ASQ as a Full member. Enjoy all the ASQ member benefits including access to many online articles.

Subscribe to Six Sigma Forum Magazine

Access this and ALL OTHER Six Sigma Forum Magazine online articles. You'll also receive the print version by mail.

  • Topics: Change Management, Six Sigma
  • Keywords: Case study, Change, Communication, Employee education & training, Employee relations, Incentive systems, Leader, Resistance, Sustainability, Six Sigma, Human resources, Employee productivity
  • Author: Schultz, John R.
  • Journal: Six Sigma Forum Magazine