Resistance to Change: Understanding and Overcoming Opposition to Change.


Article By: Dr. Kenneth Bartlett

THE CHALLENGE OF THE CONSTANT: Understanding and Overcoming Opposition to Change.
Strategies and techniques on how to deal with resistance to change.


Change is one of the few constants in life, and yet it is often difficult to embrace.

Especially at first, change can feel very unfamiliar, perhaps even a little uncomfortable. No matter how it rolls out, change takes time, effort, and commitment. It is a common psychological conflict – people desire change, but do not want to give up the familiar. It is a loop that is dangerously easy to get caught in – there is little incentive to break away from the routine until we can see, understand, and experience the difference, but neither can happen without the other happening first.

When we refer to change, we often associate it with names like Steve Jobs, Elon Musk, Jeff Bezos, and Jack Ma. However, the role of the change-maker is not confined to the leaders. True change is a bottom-up movement that begins with the brave souls who dare to challenge the status quo. After all, the future is driven by those who dream a dream that is a little bigger, a little stranger, and a little crazier.

So how can you become more receptive to change?

For starters, it is important to recognize counterproductive behavior patterns –

  1. Being excessively critical or negative.
  2. Deliberately distorting facts.
  3. Shifting blame to outside forces.
  4. Being argumentative.
  5. Undermining new ideas.
  6. Procrastinating.
  7. In extreme cases, sabotaging the work of others.

Of course, this is not an exhaustive list – however, it is important to become more self-aware and empathetic in order to create personal or professional change. Because the only way to move forward is to –

Focus on the individual.

Remember, change happens bottom-up, not top-down. When we think of change, we are too often focused on how it affects the bigger picture that we fail to see the ripple effect it may have on the individual.

This is especially true in the workplace, where most of the communication addresses the holistic impact of the change on the organization while ignoring the questions that are on everybody’s mind – how will the change affect where they work? How they work? Who they work with? What they will be working on?

Overcoming opposition to change

With our MekongSkills2Work (MS2W) Network, we strive to create a new system that will prepare students to exceed the demands of the 21st century market-driven workforce. Our mission is focused around youth employability, women empowerment, economic development, and ASEAN integration.

But what does all that exactly mean? And why should people care?

These are important questions to answer. And through institutions like our Mekong Learning Centers (MLCs), we highlight how the big-picture changes we are advocating for connect to real issues that affect real lives. We want to support our instructors by streamlining their workflow in order to increase their efficiency and effectiveness. With our instructional development and technological support, instructors are able to overcome challenges in innovating and creating their own cutting-edge teaching approaches in this new era, where the rules are still unwritten.

We will help you navigate through these uncertain and untested waters. We will prepare you to adapt and succeed with confidence in this changing world.

Because at MekongSkills2Work, we focus on the individual.

And we believe in a future where that makes all of the difference.


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