Lately I have been asked to design and facilitate on change management not just once but multiple times. Change is a constant – sort of an oxymoron isn’t it? Every time I set out to design something for my client’s I start in the same way: I look to see if anything is new out there. It is kind of ironic that the models that address change are virtually the same! I thought I would summarize a few of the more popular models on change and they help employees work productively in an ever changing environment.
Models for Change
Lewin’s Change Management Model
This still popular model was developed by Kurt Lewin, a physicist as well as social scientist, back in the 1940’s. The model is relatively simple which may be part of the appeal and consist of a three-stage process of change: Unfreeze – Change – Refreeze.
The premise for the first stage of Unfreeze is to ring the bell that change is needed!! This is done by exploring what is currently not working as well as it should and what change we need to be better and more successful (in a nutshell!) Once that is successfully accomplished we move on to the second stage of Change itself. In this stage we communicate the “new way” and help the employees to understand the why behind the changes. We also strive to communicate the positives; how the change is going to be helpful. It is at this stage the buy-in starts to occur and the acceptance level of the change increases. The final stage of Refreeze is capture and reinforce the acceptance and actual application of the change. The goal is to propel forward into leaving resistant behaviors behind and to move full into the new.
People who are structure and routine lovers may still have underlying resistance to change and not be fully bought in. We have to understand it really does take time for some to embrace change.