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Kurt Lewin

3-phases change management model

Definition an description

The 3-phases change management model, that Kurt Lewin created, is a siple model of social changes in society. The reason, why he created the the 3-phases change management model, was foundet in his emigration in the time of the Second World War. He wanted to find out, how it would be possible to solve the social conflicts in Germany after the war and how it would be possible to make Germany to a democratic state.

At the end he came to the opinion, that this step only can be reached by reeducation. The germans had to be forced to their luck, that was his plan.

Their negative behaviour to the new political order had to be changed to a positive behaviour in group dynamics processes. They had to learn to accept the new system.

In his 3-phases change management model there were allway three different phases in social groups, that he called "to freeze", "to move" and "to defreeze" (see our model at starting site).

In the phase "to defreeze" there is the preparation for changes in society. Information, and discussion is very important in that phase. After that the pase "to move" begins. There the changes are realized. The responsibility is given to the persons. In this process everything must be trained und supervised.

In the third phase (to freeze) the re-education must be fixed and stabilized. It is important to aviod to go back to old structures.

Today Lewins 3-phases change management model has also a big influency in economy science. One factor for success of a company depends on the possibility, that the ability of changes is in the structure of this company. The working peaple of a comany are very often very sceptic when innovations are planned. Therefore the leading persons have to take away their scepticism. Their resistance, active or passive, is the greatest problem to solve. All fears must be taken away. All must learn to accept the new situation, not only for a moment, but for all time (to freeze).


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