It Is Helpful to Listen, Agree, Cooperate. Discover Different Viewpoints :: Resistance to Change

In ‘Resistance to Change. Fear of Temporary Incompetence’ … I shared some ideas on how to work with resistance to change:

Fear of temporary incompetence

  • During the transition process, you do not feel competent because you have given up the old way and have not yet mastered the new one. Edgar Schein

resistance to change - argueing leads to problems, listening leads to success - create-learning team building and leadership

The managers did not find value in the content and initial management field assignment. I was called back in for an emergency meeting with the managers + their managers + the Human Resources director. 

How to work with this?

  • It is NOT helpful to fight and argue
  • It is helpful to listen, agree and cooperate. Talk to discover slightly different viewpoints for cooperation
  • Make failure and learning part of the objectives
  • Instead of making them more anxious. Make to learning easier
  • Use how each person and the team responds as a chance to make the learning even easier
  • Once the team and I found what works we kept doing more of that

It is NOT helpful to fight and argue

  • I went into the meeting ready to use their words against them.
  • In the kick-off meeting everyone was enthusiastic and all for this process. I took pictures of the ‘Pre-Animate list’ + ‘What do you need for this to be of value to you?’ + ‘Leveling questions of where each manager is now and what +2 looks like’ … Showed these to the team, and asked what happened? THEY YELLED AT ME.

It is helpful to listen, agree and cooperate. talk to discover slightly different viewpoints for cooperation

  • Deep breathe and we tried again.
  • This time I said This all sounds challenging. I agree this is a sizable commitment. I am impressed at how you manage to be so caring while getting your work done to the quality needed. In the past when you were asked to try a new way of working, what worked best for you? For this group?
  • Then I listened and captured what was said on the white-board. 
  • That Worked! We had a very open discussion about time, project pressures, unclear expectations from the start, and what the team and each person needed to move forward in this process.

Once it was clear to everyone that this is not about me…it is about them and my role is to find cooperation and support their work, the focus and conversation changed.


What do you think?

Have you had to defend your work to people who thought it was not useful? What did not work for you? What did work? What did you ask / do to move the work forward?

Team Building Leadership Innovation expert Michael Cardus

michael cardus is create-learning

Link to original post

Leave a Reply