Fundamental Concepts of Educational
Leadership & Management
By Taher A. Razik and Austin D. Swanson
What is a Learning Organization?
• It is “an organization that is continually expanding
its’ capacity to create its’ desired future. For such
an organization, it is not enough to merely
survive. ‘Survival learning’ or what is more often
termed “adaptive learning” is important – indeed it
is necessary. But for a learning organization,
‘adaptive learning’ must be joined by ‘generative
learning,’ learning that enhances our capacity to
Senge (1990), p.14
What is Change?
• Change in organizations is defined by Hanson (1985)as the
altering of “behavior, structures, procedures, purposes, or outputs
of some unit within an organization” (p. 286).
• Extensive organizational change was defined by Smith (2002) as
any intentional shift in the way the organization does business as
that organization relates to the strategic position of other
competing organizations.
• Change is a process rather than a single adjustment. Kanter, Stein,
and Jick (1992) saw organizations as fluid entities that are
constantly in motion. Managing change in this context is a matter
of “grabbing hold of some aspect of the motion and steering it in a
particular direction” (p. 10).
Uh oh!
• Change is the primary means by which any
organization or system remains fit, healthy, and
able to cope with new and differing demands. The
adaptations produced by change in an
organization constitute an evolution of the
organization. Those organizations that are able to
maintain flexibility and react appropriately to new
environmental conditions survive and prosper.
Those organizations that cannot become less
and less able to serve society.
• Hence the problem with our schools!!!!
Uh oh2!
• It is the responsibility of the school system to prepare our
youth to function in an adult world. To do this, the school
system must remain constantly aware of the nature and
requirements of that environment. As the environment
changes and as new technology, new social structures,
and new values develop, school systems must be aware
of those changes and be prepared to adjust curriculum,
instruction, and organization to remain viable.
• See a pattern yet?
Compare and Contrast your School with the definitions
Types of Change
• Enforced change
• is the result of needs identified from external forces. It would not have
taken place if it were not for the external influence(s) involved. The
task of leadership or management is to devise methods to cope with
change, to act as a change master. In this sense the organization
functions at the whims of those with more authority, influence, or
political clout. Examples in the school environment could include state
or federal mandates or the impact of community pressure groups.
(NCLB, Standards)
• Expedient change
• involves meeting immediate concerns and is generally short term or
reactionary. Although it can also be internally driven, it is more likely
that expedient change in the organization will result from meeting
external demands. Examples in the school environment could include
last-minute changes in the school budget or storm damage to a school
building. (Cultural Influences)
Types of Change
• Essential change
• is derived from internal rather than external sources. It is driven by
the ability of the system to monitor itself and work toward improved
performance. It requires that persons within the system work
cooperatively to transform behavior or system components. An
example in the school environment could be updating the
• Planned change
• as defined by Owens (1987), is a deliberate attempt to direct
change within a set of predetermined goals and values. It is
foreseen and managed. It is brought about by persons directly
connected within the system that is changing. Strategic planning in
the school district is an example of planned change.
Types of Change
• Unplanned change
• is often enforced change, unanticipated, and often forced on a
school system or an organization. It generally meets the needs of
an external agent rather than the needs of the organization being
changed. An example would be a merger of two small but
functional school districts that resulted from the budgetary needs of
the state rather than any dysfunction in the local districts. Expedient
change is generally also unplanned, meeting operational needs as
they arise but not causing deep adjustments in the nature or overall
activities of the organization.
• Tucker (2007) addressed three different types of change,
saying that each type requires a different approach to
achieve successful implementation. The
• three types were developmental change, which occurs
Three Types of Change - Tucker
• Developmental
• Occurs when an organization makes an improvement to current
• Transitional
• Occurs when new processes or procedures replace those that are
• Transformational
• change, which may involve both developmental and transitional
change and results from shifts in the organization sufficiently major
that the organization needs to transform itself. (This would be us!
Lead by YOU!)
Change Often Creates Emotional Tension
• Change should be viewed as not only an intellectual process
but a psychological process as well.
• Psychologically, change may be resisted because of interference with
self-esteem needs, social status, and relationship fulfillment. The most
obvious sources of personal resistance to change originate in the
person’s fear of the unknown.
• Organizational and individual routines have a high degree of
certainty and are not easily altered without some opposition
from an individual’s or a group’s concern about the innovation’s
applicability, perceptions of their own abilities, concerns about
other changes taking place at the same time, and the support
that they are provided.
• People will resist change if they fear it will reduce their power
and influence or make their knowledge and skills obsolete.
Why have educational reforms failed?
Shared Vision
Problems, Issues
Emotional Tension
Current Reality
We typically play here
Problems, Issues
How can educational reforms succeed?
Shared Vision
We should play here
Creative Tension
Current Reality
Problems, Issues
Problems, Issues
Wah, wah, wah!
Shut up and learn. Then, shut up and lead!!!
Awareness &
Legal &
Telltale Signs That Your School Has a
“Learning Disability”
• “I am my position!”
• “The enemy is out there”
• “The illusion of taking charge”
• “The fixation on events”
• The Parable of the Boiled Frog
• The Delusion of Learning from Experience
• The Myth of the Management Team
The Dance of Change, ( 1999) Senge, pp.334-341
Describe the culture of your present organization
• What is your organization’s genetic code?
• What aspects stay constant amid the flux of people, info,
and work? What values, ways of acting, or habitual
beliefs reinforce your identity as “us”?
• Who belongs?
• Which people truly belong? Do they know they belong?
Have they chosen to belong?
• What is the purpose?
• What wants to happen in your organization? Is it a
desirable future? Is there a “shared vision” among all
The Dance of Change, ( 1999) Senge, pp.334-341
Describe the culture of your present organization
• How aware is your organization of itself and its
• Use artifacts/rituals of your culture to justify all
of your observations.
The Dance of Change, ( 1999) Senge, pp.334-341
Narrowing the path to espoused vs. actual
• How does your culture define truth?
• What does your culture believe about human capability?
• What does your culture believe about human nature?
• What does your culture believe about social organization?
The Dance of Change, ( 1999) Senge, pp.334-341
Resistance to Change
• Change efforts may be long awaited by some and strike fear
in others.
• In any system, including educational systems, there is a builtin inertia that tends to maintain the stability of the
organization. (Systems tend to create equilibrium)
• Kowalski and Reitzug (1993) noted that educational systems,
as all social systems, resist change. A function of such
organizations is to provide a framework for values, beliefs,
and practices that allow people to function effectively.
• In schools, policy, regulation, and curricula provide a
meaningful environment for the work of teachers, students,
and staff. Change may threaten this framework of meaning
and produce anxiety and resistance.
Resistance to Change
• Resistance can be manifest in overt or covert behaviors.
• Stanislao and Stanislao (1983) outlined eight reasons for employee
• 1. Surprise and fear of the unknown. This emerges when radically
innovative changes are introduced without warning or official
announcement. The rumor mill creates its own informal sources of
• 2. Climate of mistrust. Mistrust can come from pre-change organizational
climates as well as from climates arising from the change process. The
best-conceived changes can be doomed by mutual mistrust—mistrust
perpetuates mistrust. Both leaders and followers suffer as the motivation
necessary to change is absent.
• 3. Fear of failure. Self-doubt and lack of confidence drain growth and
development when change participants are not allowed to prepare for
change by participating in decision making or retraining.
Resistance to Change
• Stanislao and Stanislao (1983) outlined eight reasons for employee
• 4. Loss of status and/or job security. Resistance can quickly be triggered
by real or perceived changes in power bases, loss of jobs, and loss of
status due to administrative and technological changes.
• 5. Peer pressure. Resistance can arise not only in those directly
affected by the proposed change but also in those who anticipate
negative effects on peers, colleagues, or friends.
• 6. Disruption of cultural traditions and/or group relationships. If it is
believed that the human element is the backbone of the organization,
any modifications in work or personal relationships caused by transfers,
promotions, or reassignments alter group dynamics and create
• 7. Personality conflicts. The personality of the change agent can breed
resistance if adversarial relationships develop between the change
agent, the change-inducing system, and the target system.
• 8. Lack of tact or poor planning. The system’s readiness is a key
ingredient in successful change. A good idea may fall flat not on its own
merits but because of poor timing or a poor manner of introduction.
Resistance to Change
• Schuler (2003) expanded this discussion to a list of reasons for
change resistance. They included the following:
The risk of change is seen as greater than the risk of the status quo.
People feel loyal to others who are identified with the old way.
Role models for the new way do not yet exist.
People perceive their own incompetence under the new way and
fear it.
People feel overloaded and overwhelmed.
People are skeptical and want to be sure of the soundness of the
new approach.
People fear hidden agendas on the part of the reformers.
People see the proposed change as threatening their self-images.
People anticipate loss of status or lessened quality of life.
People honestly see the proposed change as a bad idea — and they
may be right.
Resistance to Change
• Climate and culture combine to provide a powerful matrix in
which people function within the educational system. Because
climate and culture are the organizational memory and an
action context, they are also a powerfully conservative force
within the organization. Therefore, during organizational change
attempts that do not address culture and climate are at great
risk of failure.
• Change is resisted if it does not adhere to pre-established
norms and values…Norms, a representations of an invisible
framework of standard beliefs and values, are valuable to an
organization if they have worked well in the past, helped
participants interpret daily occurrences, and minimized
• Strong norms that project integrity and sensibility in an
organization and are shared by the participants across
organizational roles are especially difficult to change.
Resistance to Change
• Additional obstacles that may impede change include
resource limitations, or the inability to increase production,
augment services, purchase new equipment, or hire staff.
• In contemporary school districts an additional barrier to
change may be collective-bargaining agreements.
• Sarason (1971) observed that cohesiveness (or lack of it)
is an issue in effecting change in schools. Teachers are
relatively autonomous, with little to do with one another
during the normal school day. “They may identify with each
other in terms of role or place of work, and they may have
a feeling of loyalty to each other and the school, but it is
rare that they feel part of a working group that discusses,
plans, and helps make educational decisions” (p. 113).
Resistance to Change
• Connor and Lake (1988) grouped barriers to change into
three general categories:
• barriers to understanding: not fully understanding what is proposed;
• barriers to acceptance: those affected will not accept the change;
• barriers to acting: factors inhibiting implementation.
• Basom and Crandall (1991) identified seven common
barriers that were specific to change in schools:
discontinuity of leadership;
• Managers’ fears that change was unmanageable;
• Lack of training in management regarding change;
• Following a top-down model of decision making;
• Socialization and conditioning of school staff, which leadsto the
belief that the system is not the problem;
• Unresolved competing visions of what schools should be;
• Inadequate time and resources.
Resistance to Change
• Research on barriers to change indicates that resistance
can be reduced significantly when planning is cognizant of
the barriers as described previously. (DUH!!!)
• Additionally, Fullan (1982) found that four other
characteristics enhance the potential for success with
regard to change:
• necessity;
• clarity of purpose with clear and consistent procedures and
• complexity, or whether change is worth the expanded effort;
• practicality, or the ability to put the change into practice.
Theoretical Implications of Change
• Social thinking about change takes two different
1. The first emphasizes a historical–deterministic thread
that often reduces change to inexorable laws.
2. In a second perspective, the human component is given
center stage. Recognizing that greater knowledge and
greater self-awareness lead to progressive
3. The third approach appears to have spearheaded the
“widespread acceptance of change as a natural process
and the equally widespread desire to mold that change
in one direction or another—to imbue social change
with human purpose” Warren, 1977, p. 3).
Multiple Stakeholder Viewpoints
• The contexts of change in organizations are viewed
through several frameworks.
• The first and most prominent practice is through management.
Change is seen through the eyes of the change agent since it is the
change agents, most often leaders and managers, who dominate
decision making in most organizations.
• In another view, organizational change is assumed to occur from
within an organization. Forces within the organization, scanning
and responding to the environment, set the change process into
motion. In this view change may be merely an adaptation to
environmental changes, or it may be a comprehensive and more
innovative approach intended to capitalize on opportunities
presented from the environment.
The action research model of Huse and Cummings (1985) holds broad applicability
and is adaptable to fit many different situations. This model places strong emphasis on
data collection and diagnosis as well as on careful evaluation of action results.
1. Problem identification. Key organizational members who influence and hold power
identify problems that might need attention.
2. Consultation. The change agent and the client begin developing a relationship
wherein the change agent, mindful of the assumptions and values of both systems,
shares his or her frame of reference with the client. This sharing establishes a
beginning, essential atmosphere of openness and collaboration.
3. Data gathering and preliminary diagnosis. This stage takes place in collaboration
with the change agent and members of the organization. Four basic data
collection tools may be used: interviews, questionnaires, process observations,
and organizational performance. Using different data collection tools ensures a
more holistic set of data.
4. Feedback. Data gathered must be fed back to the client, usually in a group or work
team meeting. The change agent provides the client with all relevant and useful
data, which in turn help these groups to determine the strengths and weaknesses
of the system or subsystem under study.
The action research model of Huse and Cummings (1985) holds broad applicability
and is adaptable to fit many different situations.
5. Joint diagnosis of the problem.
To be useful, a diagnosis and recommendation must be understood and accepted.
This occurs through an ongoing collaborative process by which data and diagnosis
are shared with the group for validation and further diagnosis. Schein (1969) noted
that the failure to establish a common frame of reference in the client–consultant
relationship may lead to faulty diagnosis or a communication gap whereby the client is
sometimes unwilling to accept the diagnosis and recommendations.(push-back)
6. Action.
A joint agreement is reached with regard to the action chosen. This is the beginning of
the unfreezing process, as the organization moves toward a different statemaintaining equilibrium.
7. Data gathering after action.
The cyclic process begins with the recollection of data as they relate to the actions
taken. The action is monitored and measured to determine the effects of the action
taken. Feedback of the results is communicated to the organization. This, in turn,
leads to redefinition of the diagnosis and new action.
You have been engaged by the superintendent of the Alston Beach
School District as a consultant to provide a series of workshops for
the district’s teachers. The superintendent has told you that the
central issue ofthe series is to be professional development. He has
asked that you design the series to include professional
development for individual teachers, for grade sets of teachers at
the elementary level, and for departments at the junior/senior high
school level. You are to present a proposal for the series to him
within 60 days.
Consider the preceding discussion of models for change. Which of
these might be an appropriate base for developing one or more
workshops for individual professional development? Which of these
might be appropriate for workshops for grade sets of elementary
teachers? For junior/senior high school departments? Why?
Models for Planned Change and Their Use
• Beckhard and Harris (1977) presented a general model of
change that encompasses a number of aspects of the
planned change process. The general model had six
• diagnosing the present condition, including the need for change;
• setting goals and defining the new state or condition after the
defining the transition state between the present and the future
developing strategies and action plans for managing the transition
evaluating the change effort; and,
stabilizing the new conditions and establishing a balance between
stability and flexibility.
Models for Planned Change and Their Use
• Lipham et al. (1985) identified four models: problem
solving, research–development–diffusion–utilization,
social interaction, and linkage.
Problem Solving Models
• Hersey and Blanchard (1988) noted that a problem exists “when there is a
discrepancy between what is actually happening (the real) and what you
or someone who hired you . . . would like to be happening (the ideal)” (p.
334). A problem situation in a school setting might involve a high level of
absenteeism by students, a significant dropout rate, or poor achievement
test scores. (think “GAP”)
• Most problem-solving models involve the following elements
• diagnosis: the problem is noticed, identified, and defined;
• alternative solutions: a variety of possible solutions are developed and the
actions necessary to accomplish them outlined;
• selection and implementation: one possible solution is selected on the basis
of its appropriateness and feasibility, and the solution is applied; (most
• evaluation: the results of the actions taken are monitored.
• If the problem has been resolved, action ceases except to consider how
to avoid the problem in the future. If the problem is not resolved, further
alternative solutions are considered, and the model is recycled as
Utilization Models
• Like the problem-solving models, research–development–diffusion–
utilization (RDDU) is a rational–empirical approach providing a
systematic framework for managing planned change.
• The RDDU model involves the following elements:
• Research: research leads to the discovery or invention of new knowledge,
products, or techniques;
• Development: the new knowledge, product, or technique is validated
through pilot testing and experimentation and then modified as appropriate
for practical use;
• Diffusion: the new knowledge, product, or technique is packaged
appropriately and marketed;
• Utilization: if it is supported, encouraged, and accepted, the new knowledge,
product, or technique becomes a new element in the overall system.
• This model is most applicable when there are cooperative
arrangements among developers, users, and distributors; when
research products are perceived as legitimate solutions to real-world
problems; and when there is political support and leadership that
encourages the use of research.
Social Interaction Models
• Social interaction models are also a rational approach to
change. These models assess the need for change based
on communication and information from outside the
system and involve members of the change system in
planning and implementation. Active participation in the
process by the members of the system is the norm,
unlike the passive role that members played in the RDDU
Social Interaction Models
• Social interaction models typically include four
1. knowledge: leaders and/or members of the system
have information about a proposed innovation;
2. persuasion: members of the system are provided with
information leading to positive (or negative) attitudes
about the innovation proposed;
3. decision: members of the system can accept or reject
the proposed innovation; and
4. confirmation: there is confirmation from peers that the
decision to adopt or reject was appropriate.
Linkage Models
• Linkage models encompass elements of the problem solving,
RDDU, and social interaction models. An agent within the
system has an interest both within and outside the system,
thereby serving as a link. Stages involved in linkage models
include the following:
• identification: a problem is identified and defined;
• communication: communication channels linking the system to outside
resources are established;
research: external information and/or skills bearing on the problem
defined are sought out and acquired;
solution: with the assistance of the external resource, a solution to the
problem is identified or designed;
implementation: the solution is applied; and
evaluation: the applied solution is monitored, often in collaboration with
the external resource, and appropriate action follows if necessary.
• Linkage models offer the best of all worlds in that they
encompass many of the parameters of other models.
The Ladder: A Tool For Change?
I Take Action
I Adopt Beliefs
What I
What I
What I Add
What I Select
What I See
Data Data Data Data Data Data Data Data Data
Change is to Leadership as Soup is to Sandwich
BTW: Your capacity to implement change successfully will be
your measure of success – in life and on the NYSTCE!
Leadership and Change
• Throughout this book, leadership and management have
been defined, and leadership has been contrasted with
• Leadership is a process whereby leaders and followers
intend mutually agreed-on changes, whereas
• Management involves an authority relationship between a
manager and at least one subordinate that is intended to
meet a specific goal.
• Leadership may be a requisite factor to create and
spearhead change, whereas management is necessary to
maintain the stability of that change.
Leadership and Change
• The classical approach often uses leadership and management
interchangeably. Similarly, change strategies in this arena are rational.
Participative leadership models, in contrast, view the organization as a
democratic network having as its goal establishment of an environment
that addresses the needs of its members and those functionally related to
it (Lorsch & Trooboff, 1989).
Supportive leadership, group decision making, and open channels of
communication and information flow contribute to the maintenance of a
healthy organization. This model suggests that key people be made a part
of the change process.
“According to participative designers, change should start by altering the
most influential causal variables affecting what needs to be changed.
Then there should be systematic plans prepared to modify all other
affected parts of the organization in carefully coordinated steps” (Lorsch &
Trooboff, 1989, p. 74).
Authority may be present, but there is a sharing of power. Both group
decision making and group problem solving reflect the participative
approach to change.
Leadership and Change
• The Human Resource Model
• Vroom and Yetton (1973) provided an example. They advocated that
leaders be open, sharers, listeners, coaches, and participants in working
with others. Empowerment of others in producing change is a major goal
for such a leader.
• Organizations, particularly educational organizations, are
essentially bureaucratic in design and highly rational. However,
leadership within the bureaucratic structure is a decidedly social
concept, “for it automatically presumes an interactive condition
between leaders and followers” (Monahan & Hengst, 1982, p.
220). (RRR) Leaders do not exist in a vacuum; leadership is a
group phenomenon. Much of the literature on leadership focuses
on how the leader views him- or herself in relation to followers or
subordinates. The leader may assume an autocratic or democratic
stance or employ an interactional or situational approach to
• leadership and change.
Leadership and Change
• Contingency and situational approaches recognize that
position is not enough to ensure commitment or compliance.
However, compliance may be enhanced through
interpersonal interactions. The situational approach suggests
that leadership in organizations is more dependent on its
members and the nature of the circumstances that confront
the organization. “The leadership task within this context is to
relate specific behaviors to effective group performance and
satisfaction” (Monahan & Hengst, 1982, p. 248). Change in
this environment tends toward a rational and re-educative
Leadership and Change
• Senge (1990) proposed that leadership in a learning
organization involves three roles: designer, teacher, and
As designer, the leader creates a vision and establishes the
core values and principles of the organization.
As teacher, the leader helps others examine and restructure
their views of organizational reality.
As steward, the leader demonstrates commitment to the
people being led and to the larger purposes of the
Through these roles, the leader functions as a change agent.
How does change occur? The following are Principles of
Change by Gene Hall and Shirley Hord
• Change is a process, not an event
• Developing and implementing an innovation are different things (patience, humor
and creativity are needed)
An organization does not change until individuals within it do
Innovations come in different sizes
Interventions are the actions and events that are key to the success of the
change process
Top-down and bottom-up are fine, but horizontal is best
Administrator leadership is essential to long-term change success
(institutionalize the innovation so that it survives when the developers leave-and
when you leave)
Mandates can work
(It is a strategy with a clear priority and the expectation that it will be
The school is the primary unit for change
Appropriate interventions reduce the challenges of change
The context of the school influences the process of change
Who is going to get it done? YOU!
Characteristics of Effective Change Agents
• Effective change agents know about the task at hand,
understand the cultural context in which the task must be
performed, know their followers, and know themselves,
according to Hodgkinson (1991).
• They are generally leaders who see a need for change,
visualize what can be done, and move toward the
strategies necessary to accomplish their ends.
• Effective leaders (change agents) possess high intellect,
high initiative, strong orientation to both people and goal
accomplishment, and a clear vision of what the
organization can be (Lashway, Mazarella & Grundy,1988;
Stogdill, 1974; Yukl, 1981).
Framework for Strategic Leadership
Skills and
Capabilities (ppk)
Deep Learning
Guiding Ideas
Domain of
Innovations in
T, M, & Tools
Functions of Effective Change Agents
• Change agents perform three functions in establishing an
effective change-inducing system. These are recruitment,
development, and control. Since the change agent working
alone is unlikely to be successful in seeking change, one
necessary function is recruitment of like-minded persons or
• Warren (1977) pointed out that the larger and more
complex the system, the more likely it is that there will be
others either actively seeking change or predisposed
toward it.
• Development of a change-inducing system may involve
creating a coalition or mobilizing already existing changeminded individuals or groups to take control of assets they
did not control previously.
As the process develops three issues arise…
• One is to balance inclusion with coherence. That is, the
more individuals or subgroups who are involved in the
change effort the better, as long as the original purposes
remain clear and coherent. Guiding Ideas Anyone?
• Second is to balance the original goals with the interests
and positions of new members of the change group and
not to be diverted toward other and sometimes private
ends. Laser-like focus on the mission!
• Third, the change-inducing system should exist not for its
own sake but in order to accomplish a clearly defined end.
If resources are diverted to maintain the change-inducing
system for its own sake rather than meeting the original
goals, that perverts the process. Don’t change simply for
the sake of change!
The change agent’s ability to balance control of the change process and share
control when appropriate is the third function to consider. Once the change system is
established, the change agent will begin to lose sole control of the process. Sharing
of control is necessary to broaden the base of the effort. Ideally, shared values
among the members of the change system will lead to shared understandings and
effective decisions made by consensus.
Fombrun (1992) considered the ability of the leader to recognize the need
for change and the ability to gain consensus in that vision to be fundamental to
Another concern for the change agent is the appropriate degree of change to be
undertaken. This issue leads to incremental change, planning for change in stages
with careful checks at intermediate points. This may lead to reducing the difficulty of
the change objective while increasing the likelihood of success. Given these
concerns, the change agent needs to be sensitive to what is possible as well as to
what is desirable. Viewing the task in this way will lead the successful change agent
to the development of allies, access to additional resources and sources of power
when appropriate, and development of long-range multilevel plans that have an
improved chance of success. Create a succession of small, quick wins!
Six Methods To Reduce Resistance
Even in the best of situations, the change agent may well run into either
passive or active resistance. The change agent may use a variety of tactics to
reduce that resistance.
Lunenberg and Ornstein (1991) stated that change agents use six methods to
reduce resistance to change:
1. participation: involvement of those who will be affected by the change to
participate in the planning, design, and implementation (participation
establishes ownership, builds commitment, and reduces anxiety);
2. communication: employees need to know the purpose of the change and
how it will affect them;
3. support: high-level support generates commitment;
4. rewards: resistance will be less if some benefit, tangible or intangible, is
5. planning: well-thought-out infusion processes should be designed; and
6. coercion: although coercion may ensure that change occurs, it may also
produce anger and resentment.
Several Factors That Aid In Reducing Resistance To
Huse (1975) cited several factors that aid in
reducing resistance to change.
a) Any change process needs to take into account the needs, attitudes, and beliefs
of the people involved as well as the forces of organization. The individual must
perceive some personal benefit to be gained from the change before willingness
to participate in the change process will be forthcoming.
b) The greater the prestige of the supervisor, the greater the influence that he or she
can exert for change.
c) Strong pressure for changes in behavior can be established by providing specific
information desired by the group about itself and its behavior. The more central,
relevant, and meaningful the information, the greater the possibility for change.
d) Facts developed by the individual or the group or the involvement and
participation by the individual or the group in the planning, gathering, analysis,
and interpretation of data highly influence the change process.
e) Change that originates from within is much less threatening and creates less
opposition than change that is proposed from the outside.
f) Information relating to the need for change, plans for change, and consequences
of change must be shared by all relevant people in the group
Another Researchers Take…
London (1988) also identified several factors that can aid in minimizing
resistance to change.
a) Evaluate the characteristics of the change. Consider complexity,
psychological and financial cost, the extent to which the purpose and
intended outcome are clear, and the amount of mutual agreement.
b) Consider who and what is affected by the change. Try to determine
how the change affects the work that is done and the working and
personal relationships of those affected.
c) Envision how the change will be implemented. Reduce uncertainty to
a minimum.
d) Be prepared for multiple interventions. As an example, training staff
for new tasks will not necessarily be effective unless the social
system and the reward structure reinforce the desirability of
implementing the new behavior.
Effective Change Agents Are Systems Thinkers
Effective change agents are systems thinkers prepared for and planning
for the complexities of multisystem interactions and long-term ripple effects once a
change is implemented. Indeed, they should be prepared for such complexities
once a change is suggested since the anticipation of change will often produce an
impact of its own. Plan for the unintended consequences!
Implementing this multisystem interactions perspective by the change
agent involves development of clear answers to questions related to the situation,
not only for the change agent but also for all involved in the process. Essential
questions for condition are the following:
• What is to be changed?
• Why is it to be changed?
• How is it to be changed?
• When is it to be changed?
• Who will be involved in the change?
• What barriers to the change will need to be overcome?
• What impact can reasonably be expected on individuals, on subsystems, on the
overall system, on the external environment?
• What support for the change can be expected?
• What will be the costs of the change? What will be the benefits of the change?
Habit Stakers, Habit Makers, Habit Breakers
Freeman (2006) recommended considering the personalities of staff
in terms of three constituencies: habit stakers, habit breakers, and habit
• Habit stakers he defined as people who are preservers of the existing
culture, the status quo. If the institutional habits— ways of doing things—
are productive, that is all to the good. If they are dysfunctional habits, then
they can interfere with the organization’s performance.
• Habit breakers he defined as those people who want to see change in
how things are done. The leader has the problem of separating the
thoughtful from the unhelpful, but these people are source of the
organization’s change agents if their perspectives can be harnessed to
the organization’s goals.
• Habit makers are the people who institutionalize the new way of doing
things. They need to be alert, aware, patient leaders by example at all
levels of the organization if the new patterns are to be embedded in the
organizational culture.
The Successful Change Causes Alignment
Shared Vision
The Ideal

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