Strategies for Change Week 7: “The Hard Side of Change Management”

Change is a challenge. This isn’t news. We focus on all the elements that may stand in our way such as human resistance, poor leadership, or lack of motivation. But sometimes we get so wrapped up in these soft elements of change that we overlook the nuts and bolts, the hard elements that are important to making change successful.

Initial Post Instructions

After reading “The Hard Side of Change Management” this week, it will be fruitful to explore additional theories of change management. To prepare for the discussion forum this week, conduct some research on other theories: complexity theory; Kurt Lewin’s Force Field Analysis (Unfreeze, Change, Freezing); Morgan’s Images of Organization or related articles.

Compare and contrast these models with Kotter’s 8 Steps to Change. At this point, refrain from personal opinion – focus on an objective analysis of the theories themselves.

Follow Up Posts, 75-150 words minimum

After your initial post, read over the items posted by your peers and your instructor. Select at least two different posts, and address the following items in your responses:

i. Did your peer’s assessment of the different theories offer new insights to you?

ii. What questions remain in your mind after reading their analyses of these change model? Invite further conversation about these theories.

Patricia McCarthy  


Kurt Lewin’s Force Field Analysis involved three steps, unfreezing, moving and refreezing.  Lewin’s three concepts considered the ideas of shaping and incorporating a way to deal with the investigating, comprehension and achieving change at the organizational and societal level. The unfreezing stage was based on that the balance should be destabilized (unfrozen) before old conduct can be disposed of (unlearned) and new conduct effectively embraced.  Under the moving stage one should try to consider every one of the powers at work and distinguish and assess, on a testing premise, all the accessible alternatives. In the final stage refreezing new conduct must be, somewhat, compatible with the remainder of the conduct, character and condition of the person or it will just prompt another round of disconfirmation. 

             Morgan’s tactic was based on the principle that organization concepts depended on the understanding of images of the organization.  Metaphors can be viewed as ideas which can support the understanding of an organization.  Morgan’s ideas “metaphors” are a machine, an organism, an information processor (brain), a culture, a political system, a psychic prison, a flux and transformation, an instrument of domination.  Morgan’s metaphors have filled in as methods for translating hierarchical issues, as beginning stages for research, and as edges for characterizing writing in the field. The metaphors also include various theories and means of making sense of organizations while some scholars see them as a tool to analyze and address problems within an organization.

Complexity theory embraces the rising presumptions of comprehensive quality, shared causality, and perspectival perception.  Complexity theory has provided a direction to organizational change.  It has provided the tools, methods and processes to aid in organizational change through a strategic direction, corporate culture and organizational design as received a lot of recognition for the path of organizational purpose. The motivation of complexity moves from customary, top-down ways to deal with arranging and overseeing change activities and toward encouraging bottom up.

After reaching each theory and comparing them all to Kotter’s I would have to say that the theory that resembles Kotter’s is Kurt Lewin’s Force Field Analysis.  They each follow a process/stages of how to go about accomplishing change. Morgan’s and Complexity theory seem very complicated with no true process help an organization accomplish the change that is required.  

Arena, M. (2009). Understanding large group intervention processes: A complexity theory perspective. Organizational Development Journal. 27(1), 49-64. Retrieved from www.web.a.ebscothost.com.

Burnes, B. (2004). Kurt lewin and the planned approach to change: A re-appraisal. Journal of Management Studies. 41(6), 977-1002. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-6486.2004.00463.x

Ortenblad, A., Putnma, L.L. & Trehan, K.(2016).  Beyond morgan’s eight metaphors: Adding to and developing organization theory. Human Relations. 69(4), 875-889. doi: 10.1177/0018726715623999

Pietrzak, M. (2017). Balanced scorecard and morgan’s organizational metaphors. Research Papers of the Wroclaw University of Economics. 474, 106-114. doi: 10.15611/pn.2017.474.10

Johanna Garzon  


Lewin’s theory of change management identified three stages of change. First, the unfreeze stage where there has to be a preparation in the organization to accept change. This might be done by challenging the core of the company which in turn will evoke strong reaction in employees and that is what is needed to start the change. Second, the change phase in which people start to look how to do things better and low for a new way. Communication and time are key in this stage. Third stage is freezing again which means changes will start to make sense, so employees will embraced the best ways of working. As we have seen with Kotter’s 8 step change model, it explain step by step the process, so the process become a plan to do. It has 8 steps and the steps are very clear. Also, Kotter’s theory describes the goals and challenges in a very simple manner that is easier to follow. Lewin’s theory has three stages, so they are broad and can take time for the leadership to understand and create a specific plan. Both theories take time to implement. Kotter’s can be more clear in the sense that it is step by step, so understanding each step will lead the leader to a much more universal implementation. As Kritsonis (2005), explains in her article, Lewin’s theory is very concise and goes to the point, while other theories including Kotter’s consider attitudes and experience to make the successful.

Campbell, Robert (2008). Change Management in Health Care. Retrieved from

https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/2b7c/9cfbaa4aae1954522acc75f3e63b0cd3f968.pdf?_ga=2.126518285.1885758956.1566564158-1621762955.1566564158 on August 23rd, 2019.

Kritsonis, A. (2015). Comparison of Change Theories. Retrieved from

https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/2b7c/9cfbaa4aae1954522acc75f3e63b0cd3f968.pdf?_ga=2.126518285.1885758956.1566564158-1621762955.1566564158 on August 23, 2019.

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