As human beings, we tend to pick up on feelings before we're able to vocalise why we may be sensing things in a particular way.  

This is linked to our primal survival needs.  We have to feel something is wrong and respond immediately to avoid danger, or risk death from a potential predator.  No time to sit and analyse what the danger is - just get the heck out of there!

Unfortunately we still...

...have the same fear response to situations of uncertainty.  Our primal need for safety kicks in.  

In the modern world, the reality is that most changes - for example, to the processes, procedures or structure of our organisations - are not life-threatening dangers. And yet our natural fear response treats them as if they are!   

This explains... 

...why so many people display a natural aversion to change, often undermining change programmes due to being unable to see the positive benefits - and the potential negative consequences of change-avoidance.



When you want to make changes, remember that there will almost certainly be an initial negative response, unless it is properly pre-framed. 

You have to sell the need for change before trying to sell the change itself.  

Draw up a list of...

...all the negative outcomes from not making the necessary changes, and a list of all the positives of your proposed changes.

Then weave all that into two stories and ask them what they think of the two different scenarios.  The answer should be obvious! 

[What we're doing here is using 'away from' motivation to create a desire for change and then 'towards' motivation to give direction and focus to the change process.]  

Here's a useful tip: 

I prefer to do the first part myself, and then work with my team to co-create the second story.  Doing it that way you get to build ownership and trust into the process from the outset.