ERIC Number: ED394591
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1996-Feb
So They Are Resistant to Change? Strategies for Moving an Immovable Object.
Kesler, Rosemary; And Others
Although the reality of change is ever present, educators are often resistant to it. Three barriers to change in colleges or other organizations are a lack of strategic vision and mission; low commitment, trust, and teamwork; and a bureaucratic organizational culture. Resistance to change can manifest itself in various ways, including regression (i.e., pretending not to know how to perform), lower productivity, sabotage, absenteeism, transfer, and resignation. Causes of this resistance include fear of failure or the unknown, inertia, economic issues related to seniority and job loss through automation, threats to the informal organization of a college, misunderstanding, and poor timing or approaches to change. Division chairs must help faculty identify the need for change and lead the faculty through a process of reflective thinking. For example, suggestions for change often come from businesses that employ students and hire faculty for summer jobs to give them insight into the industry. It is the chair's role to motivate faculty to take such employment and to implement any resulting changes. Chairs should also be aware of the working styles of the individuals in their departments to help reduce resistance to change and to identify spontaneous change agents among faculty who may provide assistance. In planning for change, helpful strategies include providing training, issuing directives, using participative decision making, and implementing a trial period. (TGI)
Publication Type: Guides - Non-Classroom; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: In: The Olympics of Leadership: Overcoming Obstacles, Balancing Skills, Taking Risks. Proceedings of the Annual International Conference of the National Community College Chair Academy (5th, Phoenix, AZ, February 14-17, 1996); see JC 960 276.