Organizational Culture And Responses: Resistance To Change Essay


Discuss about the Organizational Culture and Responses for Resistance to Change.


Introduction and Background

All organizational management systems have a set type of cultures and behaviors that enable them to achieve their objectives (Burnes et al., 2017). These management systems are not consistent, and organization management always changes its system to improve its efficiency, due to the continuous change of the employees, technological change, and social change of customer. Organization change aims at redirecting it to the desired future. Factors that contribute to variations in the culture ranges from cost reduction, technological, cultural change redundancies and performance change (Nesterkin, 2013). Many organizations always face problems in managing the changes, hence the basis of the article. The article looks at versed issues from the theories, concepts of organizational management and how the changes can be manageable. Organization culture is definable as set cultures and theories since there is no correct one. Organizational culture is a system of collective values and beliefs used to control the operation of every business.

Objectives and scope

The primary objectives and the scope of this report is hence to;

  • determine main management concepts
  • identify main management theories and approaches
  • compare and contrast the major concepts and theories of operation management
  • analyze the quality of different theories


There are internal and external factors that affect organizational change. These include management styles or leadership, innovativeness process, and resources, the market, the technological change, as well as the government laws and policies (Fieberg et al., 2015). The resource includes the employees and finance. Employees refer to the non-management people who are responsible for adopting and embracing any change to see its success. Technological change and innovativeness refer to how creative is the leadership and the employees in adopting new methods, organizational plans, and strategies in the business that may result in new or efficient products and services to the competitive market. Technological change influences the organizational change through adopting many easy ways of doing things. With the adoption of new technology such as closed-circuit television cameras that creates anxiety among the staffs, other technological changes tend to perform more work than physical labor hence will layoff some workers. The competitiveness of the market creates more challenges on how to outdo the rival companies, hence creating room for coming up with more satisfying products.

The management style and leadership refer to the management personnel who are responsible for planning and controlling of all aspects in an organization (Matsuo, 2017). For any change to occur successfully in an organization, the leadership must be to the task from understating it to its implementation. The management style tends to influence on how the leaders will be able to influence the employees to embrace and adopt the change. For example, to eliminate resistance by the staffs, an autocratic manager may opt to adopt democratic or a participatory management style. Therefore the change in management style will bring the crews close to the management.

Various theories explain the concepts of organizational culture and change within the organization are documented. These include Awareness Desire, Knowledge, Ability, and Reinforcement ADKAR Model, Kotter's Model, and Lewin’s Change Model. ADKAR Model is more goal- oriented change management model (Wright, 2016). It has five factors for its success; awareness, desire, knowledge, ability, reinforcement during its application. These factors aim at driving each to move from current individual state to a person future state. It starts with the individual and then continues to the whole organization. The management does this by explaining to each the fundamental reason and advantages for the change creating awareness of the objective of the process. The management, therefore, ensures that each person undertakes any training required and information needed to enable every employee to perform the tasks required in the changed environment. It will be upon the management to oversee the implementation of the change, and any corrective measure addressed.

KOTTER MODE is an eight-step process for organizational change developed by John (Garel, 2013). There are eight steps; establishing the sense of urgency by explaining why the change is needed. The second is forming a powerful coalition by bringing together, all the personnel that can lead the process of the change. The third stage leader establishes a vision and strategy, for the change and then the information is relayed to the staffs. Empowerment of the action is achievable through removing all issues that may object the implementation.The change leader creates short-term wins and consolidates them for the long-term achievements. Finally, the changes are achievable into the organization system through consistent implementation by all the stakeholders while being overseen by the leaders.

Lewin’s Change Model is a change that assumes that any change is a plan and people are always the cause of those changes. The model aims at reducing all types of resistance to the changes by using the driving and restraining forces. The driving forces are the motivational reasons for a change in people while the restraining forces are those that hinder people in adopting such a change. The model has got three steps, these include; Unfreezing, a process of preparing for change that tends to uncover the fear of the unknown through communication. After communication, employees need to acquire knowledge and information through training on the change, and then they are allowed to manage their stress through discussing the change with colleagues. The employer should give ultimatums, to employees who do not embrace the change to either accept or be sacked. For those who have accepted the change, should be motivated to achieve the objective. Changing step is the actual stage of the modification. At these stages, there are new learning on behaviors and systems. Refreezing is reinforcement stage. At this juncture, feedback is collected, and the management does the motivation.

Similarities and Differences

Every model is adaptable depending on its strength and applicability to the organization in making the desired change (Bagno, 2017). It is observable that every step found in ADKAR Model is also present in the Lewin’s Model as explained below. The unfreezing step in Lewin’s Model represents the awareness, desire and knowledge stage in ADKAR M model. The changing step in Lewin’s model represents the ability stage in the while the refreezing is equivalent to the reinforcement stage in ADKAR. The KOTTER’S eight steps are also available in the Lewin’s model. The unfreezing stage equivalent’s the first four stages of KOTTER’S model that are establishing the sense of urgency for change, creating the guiding coalition, developing a strategy and communication of the change. KOTTER emphasizes more on this stage. The changing step is in steps number 5-7 of the KOTTER model, which involves empowering broad-based action and creation of short terms goals. The last two stages are equivalent to the refreezing stage in the Lewin’s model.

Both KOTTER and Lewin’s recognize the aim of reducing the resistance and preparing the employees for change (Bagno, 2017). Although both ADKAR and KOTTER have the same aspect with the Lewins, all of them have different components of organizational change from one another. While Lewis focuses on creating awareness and knowledge, ADKAR insists on the creating the desire for change. KOTTER insist on the leadership contribution during the organizational change rather than on individual change as in ADKAR and Lewin’s models. While the ADKAR and Lewin’s model try to eliminate the resistance of the change, KOTTER insists on risk-taking and finding solutions to the problems. Even though both ADKAR KOTTER insist of reinforcing the organizational change, ADKAR does it at an individual level, unlike KOTTER that insist that it is through the leadership.

Addressing resistance to organizational change

Change is unavoidable in everyday’s life of an organization (Rese et al., 2011). Some of the employees do not welcome the change. The following are ways how to avoid and manage such resistance;

The first stage is changed preparation, a stage where the leader must formulate the anticipated points in the strength and better way on how to address them. The resistance can be avoidable at the early stage through proper communication. Any change in an organization should be communicated to those that it is going to impact. Engaging the staffs through listening to their views makes the change justifiable and helps in removing any doubts in their minds. Relate the change to other issues that people care for such as their health, their promotions or even regarding the increase of salary. As a result, they get motivated.

The second stage is change management, whereby all the resistant’s plan is of the five stages which are the communication method, creates awareness of the change to the staffs. The sponsorship program creates good participatory by building a coalition support with the senior leaders. The coaching plan outlines the main steps involved in the change. The training program empowers the staffs with the skills and knowledge that are very useful for the modification while the resistance management plan, addresses any obstacle that will be encounter during the implementation.

The third stage is reinforcement stage, a stage where the leader collects all the feedback to help understand the rate of adoption and compliance with adopted culture. The feedback will allow the manager to know the shortcomings and address them effectively while upholding the wins to the betterment of the company. In case, of any resistance, the leader should work out on identifying the cause of that strength and understanding the reason behind that resistance. There might be some reasons such as lack of awareness of the change or fear of the job loss. After such identifications, the change management team should engage the right leaders to address the problem.


Every organizational change aims at redirecting the organization to the desired system that is more efficiency. It is the team to choose the model that conforms to the objective and change required. For those who don’t possess much knowledge can opt for the ADKAR which is evident and straightforward unlike Lewin’s that explain less, while KOTTER will be more applicable when the change is supposed to be made by the top leadership. It is also observable that the models overlap one another, so combine all the models by the management would provide the best organizational change. Therefore, the selection of a model should depend on the knowledge and experience possessed by the person who is implementing the change.


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