change fatigued employee

Managers are often aware when employees resist change. Resistance is usually a visible thing – people complain, tell negative stories, or get annoyed.

But change fatigue is hidden and managers often fail to recognise it. According to McMillan & Perron (2013), “staff experiencing change fatigue simply shut off and become withdrawn, taking no steps to address issues relating to change initiatives.”

Contributing factors

Here are some factors that contribute to change fatigue:

  • Perceived lack of control – employees feel they have no control over how the change is handled and become resigned to the process
  • Unrealistically high expectations – managers have high levels of expectations for success, but employees are disillusioned by past failures
  • Emotional exhaustion and burn-out – change is unrelenting and employees feel overwhelmed by it

Signs of change fatigue

Change fatigue is hard to notice, because dissent is not apparent. But here are some things to look out for:

  • Passive acceptance of proposed changes – there is little debate, f