The Systems Justification theory tells us that change decisions in an organization are influenced by three types of need presented by the people who make it up.
The epistemic needs we have to maintain a sense of certainty and stability
The existential needs to feel security and confidence
And the relational needs of affiliation to other people that are part of the very reality of any business organization
The “sum” of these three types of socio-business need gives rise to a motivation in the professionals that makes them perceive the current organizational system in their companies as fair, legitimate and beneficial, and stable, as well as makes them feel the desire to maintain and protect the status quo that unites and makes this system understandable through the behaviors of the individuals who shape it every day and transfer it among collaborators, suppliers, clients and Society in general.
BUT WE SHOULD KNOW THAT THE JUSTIFICATION OF THE CURRENT ORGANIZATIONAL SYSTEM IN COMPANIES USUALLY BRINGS OUT “SHORT-TERM POSITIVE” EFFECTS AMONG THE PROFESSIONALS OF THE ORGANIZATION, SUCH AS:
Reduction of fear caused by threats to the status quo of the Organization.
From Watch&Act we suggest that System Justification trends can have negative consequences for attitudes and behaviors that favor changes and transformations in companies.
The tendency to justify the current Organizational System can interfere with a clear assessment of the damaging aspects of the socioeconomic status quo and prevent a person from becoming dissatisfied and taking steps to correct competitiveness problems or stop economic slowdown or slowdown cycles.
The subjective feeling of safety gained through participation in System Justification may result in ignoring or denying the company’s problems and prolonging harmful behaviors.
The key to our argument, then, is that the System Justification motivation is a major obstacle to bringing about favorable changes in our businesses.
Because the digitalization problems that are currently on the table are in many ways the result of our global action practices without geostrategic strategies and the socioeconomic institutions themselves that are far behind business actions.
In order to recognize this type of problem, it is necessary to admit that the status quo cannot be totally legitimate or beneficial, such an admission directly contradicts the needs of the System and its Justification tendencies.
Therefore, the more people are motivated to defend and reinforce the existing system, the more likely it is that they will deny the problems that such changes require, as they challenge the legitimacy of the system, as well as its stability (i.e., sustainability).
Ultimately, for many people, acknowledging and addressing environmental problems appears to be a threat to the very foundations of the social, economic, and political status quo.
When the social system is threatened by an external source, such as a military attack abroad or a terrorist attack, the need to justify the system in general manifests itself in terms of increased attention and commitment to defeating the source of the threat.
ON THE CONTRARY, THE THREAT OF ENVIRONMENTAL DESTRUCTION IS THE RESULT OF THE CURRENT SITUATION ITSELF, THE PRACTICES OF OUR SOCIO-ECONOMIC SYSTEM HAVE CAUSED THE CURRENT CRISIS, AND THEREFORE CONSTITUTE A THREAT THAT IS INTERNAL TO OUR CURRENT SYSTEM. DEALING WITH THIS TYPE OF THREAT WILL INVOLVE:
Recognize shortcomings of the current system and established practices
Acceptance of responsibility, both systemic and individual, for the current state of the environment
Recognize that the situation must change if we want to avoid an ecological disaster, and with it, a business one, although it is very possible that we “will not experience it” due to its long-term effect.
As we see, people tend to defend the system or status quo against their own threats by minimizing or even denying the problems that the present will generate in the future, thus eliminating the need to ask difficult questions and make changes.
Based on the experience that Watch&Act accumulates in facilitating transformation processes in Organizations, it is the responsibility of the Company itself to create the conditions of voluntary and proactively launched uncertainty, together with the symptoms of insecurity that the economic and social context can cause them. glimpse, compensating in parallel, with actions aimed at business survival and the continuous improvement of employability, giving sand to the previous lime, and with it, maintaining a spirit of activation to change through healthy nonconformity.
We hope they have served to introduce perspectives on this topic as burning as the changes that are glimpsed in companies in these times on the Theory of Justification of Organizational Systems.
Thank you so much!