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Change Readiness

A synthesis prepared by Susan Donnan, March 2006

Change is disruptive

Change threatens people's comfort, control, confidence and competence; resistance is a normal reaction to change. Therefore, in times of change, it is important that we:

Change Readiness

Change readiness is achieved when those impacted by the change are both willing and able to implement the change.

The above figure by Daryl Conner represents the different stages of change commitment: contact, awareness, understanding the change, positive perception, installation, institutionalisation, and internalisation.

Awareness, understanding, and desire to change come from communication and involvement. The maxim is to involve some of the people all of the time, all of the people some of the time, and communicate to all of the people all of the time.

Knowledge and ability to change come from education and training, leading to positive perception and installation of the change.

Reinforcement for the change comes from incentives for the new behaviours and disincentives for the old behaviours, leading to adoption, institutionalisation and internalisation of the change.

Readiness Assessment

Change readiness can be assessed using one of the following mechanisms:

Regardless of the mechanism used, the following are some of the questions to ask:

Sources of change resistance 

People resist change because of one of the following:

Dealing with change resistance

To increase change readiness, the following are some suggestions for dealing with change resistance:


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