Managing Deviant Behavior and Resistance to Change

Akinlolu Ayodeji Agboola, Rafiu Oyesola Salawu


The paper focuses on how to manage deviant behaviors and resistance to change. Case study method was used to
examine practical implementation of change processes in some selected organizations.
It was discovered that change affects four basic aspects of the company: its strategy, technology, structure and
employees. All these present individuals with new situations, new problems, challenges, ambiguity and
uncertainty and threaten the status quo. Change influences authoritative allocation of both human and material
resources and encourages competition which heats up the political climate in organizations. Resistance to change
might be expressed through deviant behaviors to truncate the process or prevent implementation. The study
identifies proper education, effective communication, facilitation, motivation, negotiation, manipulation,
co-optation and coercion as possible methods for managing resistance to change. The use of any of these
methods or combination of some, however, depends on the type of organization, nature of resistance and stage of
The paper concludes that capacity to manage deviant behavior and smoothly implement change is critical to
organizational survival. Managing deviant behavior and resistance to change should be accorded strategic
importance to facilitate effectiveness and efficiency in organizations.

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