What is The Burke-Litwin Change Model?

The Burke-Litwin Performance and Change Model, created by two organizational change consultants in 1992, is a framework for understanding an organization’s component pieces and how they interact throughout the change.

The failure of a change project is frequently caused by the inability to account for all sections of the organization affected by the change.

As a result, utilizing this approach may indicate which aspects of the organization are impacted and interconnected. The model also depicts the hierarchical structure of components inside an organization and the flow of influence from one element to the next. The concept is an example of ‘open systems theory,’ implying that outside factors influence change.

The model, according to the authors, depicts “…the key factors that must be addressed in any attempt to forecast and explain an organization’s overall behaviour output, the most significant interactions between these variables, and how they impact change.”

The external environment, transformational factors, transactional factors, and performance are the four elements that make up an organization. The various parts of the organization are then divided into groups. The diagram depicts which parts belong to which group, how they interact, and the organization’s general structure.

Burke-Organizational Litwin’s Transformation Model elaborates the fundamental elements that influence any change. It provides a valuable framework for orienting managers’ thoughts and strategies in the context of organizational change management.

Advantages of using Burke-Litwin Model

In contrast to the majority of simply descriptive models, the model provides causal linkages. The listed essential criteria, as well as their interdependencies, have a high practical significance in practice. With the help of experts, consultants, and researchers, the model has been created and modified throughout time. Furthermore, the strategy has been put to the test for the past five years at British Airways, one of the world’s most prestigious airlines.

Disadvantages of using Burke-Litwin Model

Only the external environment is identified as the primary cause of organizational change in the model. Internal variables such as changes in senior management, changes in the firm strategy or mission, and so on are not considered as probable fundamental causes.

The authors focused too much on leadership, corporate culture, systems (especially for remuneration), management practices, microclimate, motivation, individual needs and values, and performance, and not enough on the mission and strategy, structure, and relationship between the individual’s task and skills.

What are the four factors in Burke-Litwin Model?

The model comprises 12 elements that are significant to any organization, as well as their overall activity and causal linkages, which influence each change and can influence its outcome. These elements may be split into four categories, each with its unique effect on transformation.

The following are the four groups of factors:

1) External environment

any external change – a new rival, the introduction of new technology into the firm, changes in law or a change of government, a financial crisis, etc.

2) Transforming factors

The mission and the strategy

The company’s primary aim and how it will be achieved as an essential component of organizational performance is to have a stated mission embraced by personnel. The strategy is the company’s plan for achieving its principal long-term aim.


The organization’s senior management’s beliefs, philosophy, and actions Followers’ perceptions of a leader’s values and practices are used to determine leadership effectiveness.

Company culture, organizational

The company’s principles and behavioural standards Company culture is also a set of written and unwritten norms and concepts that guide the organization’s activities throughout time.

3) Transaction factors


The company’s hierarchy, functions, and responsibilities of workers and the range and levels of management, communications, relationships, and decision-making authority achieve the company’s purpose and strategy.


Rules, processes, and processes that make work more accessible and the everyday activities that employees follow to accomplish their jobs. Rewarding employees, evaluating their performance, implementing objectives and budgets, and allocating human resources are all included in the systems.

Management techniques

Sets of activities taken to guarantee the company’s regular working environment and the management and utilization of people and material resources to successfully implement the company’s strategy and achieve its purpose.

what is the burke-litwin change model

Workplace climate, often known as microclimate

The company’s overall attitude and morale are members of the department’s present impressions, expectations, sentiments, interpersonal connections, and relationships with managers and colleagues from other departments.

Individual tasks, abilities, and competences

Employees’ level of competence in the workplace – their knowledge, abilities, and experience to satisfy the demands of their jobs and produce better outcomes.

Individual requirements and preferences

The degree of wishes and expectations of employees in the firm, i.e. compensation, work-life balance, their position and duties in the organization, and more, are psychological variables that offer desire and purpose for physical or intellectual labour.

4) Individual organizational performance and productivity of the company


Internal and environmental variables motivate and stimulate people to work at a high level of quality throughout time.

This is the ultimate and genuine change in the organization. It reflects an individual’s or an organization’s performance after other elements have changed, which should lead to more excellent outcomes and achievements in the event of positive growth.

The importance of transformation elements in achieving the company’s objectives cannot be overstated. If a firm wants to make a substantial change, it must take these elements seriously and alter something in each of the three transformation components to the level required for its goals.

Transactional variables are equally essential, but transformational elements must first be addressed before transactional factors may be changed. If the three essential transformation elements remain unchanged, the organization’s transformation will be transient and unstable.

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