Difficult Personalities: The Ice Person/Resister

Any change, no matter how small, can upset the ice people and cause an outbreak of negativity. He loves the status quo. Try to change it and his resistance will flare up.

Early on in his life, this type of person got the message that change was negative, and he finds every reason to fight it. The Ice Person usually does not openly expres his opposition to change. He does it more subtly. He may even say that the change is good and that he supports it, and then just won't implement it.

The extreme Ice Person may even resort to sabotage if he finds a particular change exceptionally threatening. His favorite saying is "I liked it better the old way."

Here are two Ice People talking to each other about an impending system change.

Ice Person #1: I can't believe they are bringing in that new system. It'll mean a lot more work for all of us. The clients will benefit but not we analysts.

Ice Person #2: I thought I heard you tell that systems guy that you thought the new system was a great idea.

IP#1: Of course I did. They can't think that any of us oppose it. But you can be sure I'll do anything to make it not work.

IP#2: That's the spirit. All they ever want to do around here is bring in change. Don't they realize that people don't like change and would rather keep things the way they are?

IP#1: They'll never learn, I guess.

The Solution

The best strategy is to try to involve these people in the change. If they are part of the process or come up with the change themselves, their resistance will decrease tremendously. You may also want to gradually introduce the change to them so that they ahve time to get used to it. Sudden change is an open introduction to heightened negativity.

Get tips for another difficult personality > >

Find your workplace nemesis from
14 personality descriptions.
Cope better with these 5 tips.

Excerpted from Managing Workplace Negativity by Gary Topchik, published by AMACOM Books

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