Two basic processes, namely shear and shuffling of atomic planes can be considered as elementary mechanisms of displacive phase transformations. The atomistic models suitable to investigate the role of interfaces in the structural changes are tested. The many-body potentials are used for the description of interatomic forces. General displacements of atomic planes are examined, i.e. γ-surface type calculations extensively used for stacking fault and lattice dislocation analysis are applied to single plane shuffling and alternate shuffling of every other atomic plane producing in combination with homogeneous deformation the hcp structure. Similar approach considering shear type planar displacements leads to the Zener path between the bcc and fcc lattices. The effect of additional deformation required to obtain the close-packed atomic arrangements is analysed.