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Contingency Theory

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INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF SCHOLARLY ACADEMIC INTELLECTUAL DIVERSITY
VOLUME 8 NUMBER 1 2004-2005

Comparison of Change Theories

Alicia Kritsonis
MBA Graduate Student
California State University, Dominquez Hills

ABSTRACT
The purpose of this article is to summarize several change theories and assumptions about the nature of change. The author shows how successful change can be encouraged and facilitated for long-term success. The article compares the characteristics of Lewin’s Three-Step Change Theory, Lippitt’s Phases of Change
Theory, Prochaska and DiClemente’s Change Theory, Social Cognitive Theory, and the Theory of Reasoned Action and Planned Behavior to one another. Leading industry experts will need to continually review and provide new information relative to the change process and to our evolving society and culture.

T

here are many change theories and some of the most widely recognized are briefly summarized in this article. The theories serve as a testimony to the fact that change is a real phenomenon. It can be observed and analyzed through various steps or phases. The theories have been conceptualized to answer the question, “How does successful change happen?”
Lewin’s Three-Step Change Theory
Kurt Lewin (1951) introduced the three-step change model. This social scientist views behavior as a dynamic balance of forces working in opposing directions. Driving forces facilitate change because they push employees in the desired direction.
Restraining forces hinder change because they push employees in the opposite direction.
Therefore, these forces must be analyzed and Lewin’s three-step model can help shift the balance in the direction of the planned change
(http://www.csupomona.edu/~jvgrizzell/best_practices/bctheory.html).

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INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF SCHOLARLY ACADEMIC INTELLECTUAL DIVERSITY…...

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