Law of psychological reactance

Reactance occurs when a person feels that someone or something is taking away his or her choices or limiting the range of alternatives.”

There is a tendency for an OSS vendor to arrive on site as THE expert in all things OSS and start telling the customer all about the changes it HAS TO make.

In one case, I watched in bemusement as a 10-man project team from an OSS integrator was adamant that the customer had to change their organisation structure to fit in with their plans for the new OctopOSS. I say bemusement because the customer employs over 80,000 people.

In that particular case, the integrator persisted with many similar directives and the net result was that the customer’s team developed a strong case of psychological reactance and relationships deteriorated to a point where neither party could work with the other.

Whilst an OSS will touch many parts of the CSP’s business and whilst it does stimulate major organisational change, the CSP does not HAVE to do anything the integrator says. From my experience at least, it is essential to give the customer the autonomy to do things in a way that best suits them….. with vendor guidance of course.

How much time do you typically allocate to organisational change management and associated stakeholder relationship building?

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