Thought Leadership Articles

    3 Reasons Why Employees Resist Digital Change

    May 3, 2017 | Posted by Michael Campbell

    Digital transformation can take place in three areas: transforming customer experience, transforming business operational processes and transforming business models. While no company has yet to digitally transform in all three areas, the top firms in the world are experimenting with various combinations to benefit from the opportunities of digital transformation.

    Whether it is about using artificial intelligence to automate processes or block chain solutions to manage know your customer (KYC) requirements for Anti-Money Laundering (AML) purposes, it is about embracing the advances of technology or be threatened by it.

    If you have not heard about the rise of the fourth industrial revolution, it is about time you do.  In fact, it is shocking for one not to have been impacted by this change given the insane pace that the digital age is permeating into people's lives. However, organisations do not change, people do. Leading digital change requires competent managers to first understand points of resistance to change before they can successfully deal with them.

    According to John Wargin and Dirk Dobiey (2010)*, there are three reasons why people resist new technologies and new approaches to doing business:

    1. People resist change because they lack the skills/know-how to use and benefit from the new technologies.

    2. In traditional companies, people do not understand the 'big picture' and how the new technology would improve business and processes.

    3. Middle and Upper managers resist changes from new technology and new business models as they redefine the organisational structures and shift power bases.

    * John Wargin works for Hewlett-Packard as Director — Strategy, Organisation and Change.

    Dirk Dobiéy is a management consultant and project manager with Hewlett Packard.

    Closeup portrait, dumb clueless senior mature man, arms out asking why what's the problem who cares so what, I don't know. Isolated white background. Negative human emotion facial expression feelings.jpeg

    Now that you understand the reasons of resistance, do you know how to manage employees' resistance? Managing resistance is holds significant importance in the discipline of effective Change Management. As we have mentioned previously, organisations do not change, people do. For companies to fully benefit from digital transformations, their people must adopt and embrace the technological changes.

    To help you and your employees adopt and embrace new digital changes, and understand more about why employees resist change, CMC Partnership Asia are hosting 3-day Prosci® Certified Change Management Practitioner courses in Singapore during the months of May, June and July. These vital courses cover:

    - The Prosci® ADKAR® Model for individuals confronted by change
    - The ABC of great Sponsorship of change 
    - The 5 key roles of a Line Manager experiencing change
    - Effective Communications 
    - A 10 step process for Resistance Management 
    - The 7 Concepts of Change
    - 3 models for the Return on Investment (ROI) of change management 

    Begin your journey to better change management.

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    Don't miss out, view all course dates and locations. 

     View all courses

    Or learn more about the Prosci Certified Change Management Practitioner Course

    Read our Brochure



    John Wargin & Dirk Dobiéy (2001) E-business and change – Managing the change in the digital economy, Journal of Change Management, 2:1, 72-82, DOI: 10.1080/714042483


    Topics: change management