“From Theory to Practice” Section of IDEAS

…is pointing out one IDEA at the time. The source of the IDEA is often an Article or Blog, which is also referenced in this text.

The purpose here is NOT getting the core idea of the article. Instead of that we are seeking for one single idea or an interesting point of view. The second part of this note is putting the idea into practice.


The IDEA in brief 

“Change Resistance” is in fact a form of feedback. It’s often provided by them who know more about daily work operations than a change leader.

This is a key point of an article Decoding Resistance to Change, written by Jeffrey D. Ford and Laurie W. Ford.

How to put the IDEA into PRACTICE

Patience is a handy tactic when you are introducing a change initiative to the target group it affects. All negative feedback is not plain resistance, it might also be a resource. When you confront opposition, Ford & Ford challenge you to ask yourself:

  1. “Why am I seeing this behaviour as resistance?”
  2. “If I viewed the resistance as feedback, what could I learn about how to refine the change effort?”

Ford & Ford suggest five ways to use resistance in order to lead change more productively:

  1. Boost awareness – by dialogue you learn to undestand the change in practice and therefore more deeply.
    • I think the key to success is to find out what actions are needed for make the change happen and getting the benefits. Quite commonly we don’t have a clue how the change will affect to the detailed workflows. It’s always beneficial to study and document these effects, to make sure everybody knows what is expected from them. 
  2. Return to Purpose – Start with Why.
    • I believe that you can dive deep into “what” only after everybody knows “why”. It is not a bad idea to make a weekly poll concerning how well people understand the purpose of the change. 
  3. Change the Change. When you get the feedback be ready to make some changes to your original plan.
    • In my opinion, telling people that we can plan together HOW this change will be implemented, is a fruitful approach here. It’s no need to have a fixed plan. 
  4. Build Participation and Engagement. Take notes on Worries and Ideas, and create an Executive Action List.
    • Note to self: Actions are crucial here. It is totally wasted to interview anyone of her worries, if nothing is going to happen because of the feedback. Of course you can’t fulfill everyone’s needs here, but you can communicate how much feedback you got and what actions has been made after the feedback. 
  5.  Complete the Past. The resistance may have little or nothing to do with the current plan. Listen to people what happened in past and try to avoid these mistakes.

 Photo by Wilson Ye

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