Human Reactions to Organization Change

There is a very close relationship between change and human attitudes. Every individual reacts to the change according to their individual attitude. Human reaction to change does not depend upon logic. Generally, depends upon how a change will affect ones needs and satisfaction in the organization. Attitudes are very important in determining the resistance to change.

Read: Planned Organizational Change Process

The employees reaction to organization change any occur in any of the following forms,

1. Acceptance

Acceptance of the change depends on the perception of the employees towards the change. So, all the changes are not necessarily restricted. If an employee perceives that the change will affect his/her favorably, then he/she will accept the change. For example if workers have to stand before a machine throughout the shift, they will like the introduction of new machine which will allow them to sit while working.

2. Resistance

All the changes are not necessarily resisted. Resistance to change arises due to deferring perception, personalities and needs. If the employee perceives the change is unfavorable to them, they resist to the change. Individual generally feel comfortable in the environment that they are habituated to. So, when the change arises, the thought of moving from the environment they are accustomed to become a source of resistance. Human resistance to change may be in any of following forms,

  • Hostility or Aggression. Hostility or aggression is the immediate reaction if an individual to change. Hostility can be expressed verbally, but the combined form of hostility and aggression is of a more intense character and can also take physical forms.
  • The individual may develop lack of interest towards has work. If individual do not like the change it may result to spoilage of materials, idling of time and decline in performance. This will alternately decrease this efficiency in work.
  • Employee remains absent in their work as well slow performance in their work.
  • Employee find themselves uncomfortable, shaky and tensed on the job. Resistance develops anxiety and tension in the employee.
  • Strikes are usual symptoms of the group resistance.

3. Indifference

In some cases changes in the organization or environment fails to bring the reaction of the employee. There are two reaction to change, acceptance & resistance, but in some cases there is no reaction. This is because sometimes employee fails to realize the impact of change or some people feel that they will not be affected by the change. In both these cases there is no reaction to the change, so they will remain indifferent to change.

4. Forced Acceptance

Employee or the people may resist to the change in initial state but if he changes force are stronger the resistance force, then they have to accept the change. This is known as forced acceptance of the change. This is known as forced acceptance of the change. KEITH DAVIS absorbed that “People develop an established set of relations with their environment. They learn how to deal with each other, how to perform their job and what to expect next. Equilibrium exists, individuals are adjusted when change comes along, and it requires individuals to make new adjustments, as the employee seeks a new equilibrium. When employees are unable to make adequate adjustment to change which occur, the organization is a state of imbalance or disequilibrium. Managements general human relations objective regarding change is to restore and maintain the group equilibrium and personal adjustment which change upsets.”

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