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Force Field Analysis by Kurt Lewin

Kurt Lewin’s Force Field Analysis, is the simple yet effective decision making model to add to your management tool-kit. Lewin was a German social psychologist, who was born in 1890, and best known for “Force Field Analysis” using force field diagrams. He is regarded as, one of the founder of modern psychology. Force field analysis is an influential development in field of social science. It provides the framework for looking at the factors (forces) which influence the situation, originally social situations. It looks at the forces which are either driving the movement towards the goal or blocking movement towards a goal. The principle, developed by Lewin is a significant contribution to the field of social science, change management, psychology and organization development. It is useful when looking at the variables, which are involved in planning and implementing the change program. He assumes that in any situation, there are both driving and restraining forces, which influence any change that may occur.[ad#ad-4]

Force Field is a method to:

  • Identify the opponents and the allies
  • Identify how to influence each target group
  • Investigate the balance of power involved in the issue

Steps involved in a Force Field Analysis:

1. Describe current situation.

2. Describe desired situation.

3. Identify that where the current situation will go, if no action will be taken.

4. List all the forces, which drive change towards the desired situation.

5. List all the forces, which resist change towards the desired situation.

6. Discuss and interrogate all the forces

7. Allocate the score to each of the forces using the numerical scale

8. Chart all the forces

9. Determine whether the change is viable and progress can occur.

10. Discuss how the change can be affected by decreasing the strength of the restraining forces or by increasing the strength of the driving forces.

11. Remember that increasing the driving force or decreasing the restraining force may increase or decrease the other forces or even create new one.

Written by: Matt Mason

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