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Organizations and conglomerates of every size both international and domestic have to suffer through change at any point in their life cycle. This is because change is an important factor of growth for not only businesses but also individuals as well. Some change can help one excel, whereas, other changes can really demean and destroy a person or a company’s character or the moral outlook. In this manner, the process of change management is very important for each and every individual and organization currently in operation. Change management is the process that can be defined as the process of managing any introduction of change within the current framework of the company or it can also be documented as the management of people who are experiencing the change (Hornstein, 2015). It is more heavily focused on the side of change that involves people. All that effort put into bringing about the change and letting it fail because an organization could not manage its people in alignment with the change initiative is a waste of money and resources.
Recent changes at work
Our company by the name of ABX Limited has recently merged with another company by the name of Thelma Co. This merger has proven to be a bit of a handful for the employees of the company. This is because there are multiple employees on both sides and some of them would have to be let go in order to make a balanced workforce. This is leading to confusion and panic for me and my other colleagues. We have no certainty of it if there is any future for us within this new company. This is leading to the development of a frantic situation where people like me are rushing here and there in order to find a place for ourselves somewhere new.
Some of us are trying to approach as many of our higher up executives and supervisors as possible in order to determine what our fate would be in the new company. Furthermore, even if I were to be the ones who survive the axe and keep my job, I would still be at a disadvantage. This is because both companies had their own accounting department, IT department and the human resource department. The department and personnel of whichever company chosen to stay and continue operating moving forward, will have its own set of effects on the employees such as me. This is because the Thelma Co. has its own standards and requirements that it will want its new employees to follow diligently. Furthermore, our compensation program is also in jeopardy of being changed.
Types of Changes
There are certain types of change that can occur within an organization. These are Organization wide change, Transformational change, Personnel change, Unplanned change and finally Remedial change (Burke, 2017).
Organizational wide Change
In this type of change, there is wide scale transformation and which inherently impacts the overall framework of the organization. This revolves around collaboration, restructuring and any nature of organizational resizing. This is basically a step towards bringing a change in the company’s nature itself.
This type of change is implemented in order to get a company aligned with the environment in which the company operates in. This way, companies are able to analyze its underlying strategies and able to develop on them. By specifically focusing on a company’s strategies, it is able to provide the company with the tools to withstand the changing apparatus of its industry.
This type of change occurs when a company does mass hiring or mass layoffs. These types of changes and actions have a hefty effect on the engagement and morale of the employees of company. There can be multiple reasons for why a company wants to go for mass hiring and mass layoffs.
This type of change is usually a necessary action that needs to be taken after an unexpected event. Unplanned changes cannot be expected but they can be dealt in a manner that is organized in nature. These could also be the result of changes in the demographic composition within an organization.
These types of changes occur when leaders feel that there are some deficiencies within the current operations or it is used in order to improve performance of the company. This usually occurs when the company is under some financial distress.
Benefits of Change Management
Change management process has numerous benefits that help it in becoming an effective tool to manage change within organizations and companies. The process of change management is a managed and a planned process. This means that the benefits of the change are already known before the implementation of change. This way, these benefits become as a sort of motivation and can help in assessment of the progress of the change management. Change management also helps in responding at a faster pace to the demands of the customers. Furthermore, it is good tool to align the current resources of the company with its strategies. It also allows the companies to assess what the overall impact of a change initiative would be on an organization.
So, it also helps in increasing the organizational effectiveness and efficiency and can be further improved if the concerns of employees were to be acknowledged by the organization itself. This also benefits the organizations by reducing the chances of the unsuccessful transition of change within the company. This can also be done by anticipating challenges, so that challenges are responded to, efficiently. This further reduces the risk that is associated with the change initiative. Additionally, companies are able to save a lot of money on expenses related to implementation of the change initiative through the use of the change management process. This further has a positive effect on the return on investment of the company. All this benefits the company by providing an opportunity for the formation of best practices, development of leadership and development of the team.
Strategic, Tactical and Operational Level Changes
Strategic Change Management
Strategic change management helps in managing change in such a way that it feels structured and thoughtful. These all help immensely in meeting the goals of the organization. Its objectives and missions are also attained through this. Change is necessary for organizations to be able to meet and exceed the expectations of its customers and its competitors. Two examples of strategic change management are John Kotter’s change model and the Kurt Lewin’s change model. These two models provide the framework for the implementation of strategic change management.
Tactical Change Management
Tactical change management compiles the management of projects and the overall project process of the organization. This type of change management is based on an approach that includes timing, control, command and adoption. The leadership in tactical change management stems from the middle management and are led by managers that are at the middle of the company. The leadership visibility in tactical change management is rarely anything above the level of the director. There are two reasons for this. Firstly, change is something of an operational, functionally focused or technical nature. In this manner the most suitable option is to have leadership that have a more hands on experience. Secondly, change is organic which bubbles up from the inside of the organization and requires people from the middle management to oversee it.
Operational Change Management
In comparison to the development of organization, operational changes are very small in nature. This type of change can affect almost all levels of a company. On the other hand, it can also be specific and focus on certain divisions or even departments that exist within the organization. This type of change management is led by executives and leaders of the departments. The leadership of such type of change usually comes from the internal operations of the company. The changes related to operations and their management are most of the time those measures that help in adapting the changes within the industry. They even help in increasing the competitive advantage of the company.
Challenges of Change Management
In the process change management, leadership has to face numerous challenges. These challenges range from a variety of reasons and can be from anything. Primary, conflict is the main challenge that leaders feel during change management. Change is the process that evokes a number of emotions including fear, uncertainty and letting the employees to take their frustration out on each other. Another challenge faced during change management is of planning. Without planning change implementation and management will fall apart and have no real effect on the organization (Hayes, 2018). Setbacks are a common challenge faced during change management as they are inevitable. But its impact can be easily reduced if they are identified beforehand. Furthermore, if there is any lack of communication regarding the intended changes can possibly lead to a challenge for the leadership in order to fully implement the change initiative. Lastly, people present a natural resistance to any change initiative being brought about into their surroundings. This is because most of the times people get too comfortable with the security that is provided by their current position.
It can be said that change management is a long and arduous process. Change management revolves management of change initiative and slowly letting people adjust into the new changed environment. I myself have felt the effects of change, when a merger of my company occurred with another one. Furthermore, there are several types of change management process occurring within the organizations. Each type has its own benefits as well. However, leadership has always faced a ton of challenges while trying to implement change management.
Burke, W. W. (2017). Organization change: Theory and practice. Sage Publications.
Hayes, J. (2018). The theory and practice of change management. Palgrave.
Hornstein, H. A. (2015). The integration of project management and organizational change management is now a necessity. International Journal of Project Management, 33(2), 291-298.
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