Report For A Change Project Undertaken Business Essay

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Prepare a report for a change project undertaken within your organizational setting demonstrating how to apply organizational change solutions through utilization of change strategy models.

You should also explain the range of change implementations models available and reasons for adopting your chosen model.

The question asks me to prepare a report on change project undertaken within an organization (real or virtual) and also the change implementation strategy model which will be followed to implement change. Question also asks me to discuss the problem arising during the change process. It also gives me understanding to discuss about my suggested model and briefly discuss all the available strategy models.

Organizational change

 An organization is a group of people intentionally organized to accomplish an overall, common goal or set of goals. Business organizations can range in size from two people to tens of thousands. The systematic management of a new business model integration into an organization and the ability to adapt this change into the organization so that the transformation enhances the organizational relationships with all its constituents.

Introduction

I have chosen Renfro Crescent Pvt. Ltd. and will discuss the change project undertaken within this organization. Renfro crescent is a joint venture between the Renfro group USA and The Crescent group Pakistan. It is a well known socks manufacturing industry with the capacity of about 70,000 dozens socks per week. Renfro crescent is a manufacturing industry and exporting its goods to USA, UK, Europe and Canada.

Need for change

Organizational change should not be conducted for the sake of change. Organizational change efforts should be geared to improve the performance of organizations and the people in those organizations.

Significant organizational change occurs, for example, when an organization changes its overall strategy for success, adds or removes a major section or practice, and/or wants to change the very nature by which it operates. It also occurs when an organization evolves through various life cycles, just like people must successfully evolve through life cycles. For organizations to develop, they often must undergo significant change at various points in their development. 

Renfro crescent is a manufacturing concern and involves a lot of paper work. It includes the entry of cones of yarn in system, order estimation, knit plan, dyeing plan, costing of the finish product, time action plan, sampling of the product and much more. Organization is using the Microsoft Excel for all of its paper work. Excel is a smart software for data entry and data base but it has some limits and time taking in each entry. Employee spending lot of time in data entry and also it is become a pain for entring the same data each time whenever a new yarn lot deliverd to the organization and every time during the costing of the product same data need to be enter into the sheet for completing the process. In-short most of the time wasting in the data entry. Also it becomes time consuming for managers and assistant managers when making knit and dyeing plans, costing of the products and the addition of the new coming product with the same specifications. Product development department involves the 50% of the organization's paper work including costing, sampling, plans making, etc. So the manager in the product development department realize the need for change from excel sheet to some software to save time.

Resistance to change

According to Kotter and Schlesinger (1979), there are four reasons that certain people are resisting change:

Parochial self-interest (some people are concerned with the implication of the change for themselves and how it may effect their own interests, rather than considering the effects for the success of the business)

Misunderstanding (communication problems; inadequate information)

Low tolerance to change (certain people are very keen on security and stability in their work)

Different assessments of the situation (some employees may disagree on the reasons for the change and on the advantages and disadvantages of the change process)

Resistance in the changing environment

There are many studies witin the literature that have examined how and to what extent new forms of work orgaization, whether on the factory floor, in the office or in the public sector domains of healthcare, can be resisted. Leaving aside the view that resistance is minimal or even impossible because the power of management is ultimately overwhelming, resistance of one form or another is always possible. It has been shown by McKinlay and Taylor (1998), in their research in th UK microelectronics industry, that even under conditions that could hardly be more favorable for close managment control methods to flourish uncontested, resistance occured. A considerable number of critical case studies support McKinlay and Taylor's findings (e.g. Graham, 1994; Pollert, 1996; Rinehart, Robertson, Huxley and Wareham, 1996; Stephenson, 1996). Even those studies that proclaim the "end of worker resistance" show evidence of resistance. For example, Zuboff (1998) argues, through the use of information technology the contemporary workplace is now a site of consolidated managerial disciplinary power, control and surveillance from which there is no escape. But at the sate time, as Sakolosky (1992, p.241) points out Zuboff herself shows evidence of resistance. The worders she studied were abel to avoid the disciplinary "power effect" of computer surveillance by chaeating on certain working practices and operational procedures. Managers also manipulated output and productivity records in a way that could not be detected. Sewel and wilkinson (1992, p.293) talk about the inescapability of panoptic power, control and surveillance under lean production, but at the same time also note evidence of workers falsifying and productivity figures. Misbehaviour of this kind is not uncommon (Ackroyd and Thompson, 1999), for no other reason than that new organization forms promise much but often deliver very little in terms of improving the lived-experience of work. It is also worth nothing that resistance is often not so much an attempt to escape from work as an attempt to escape into work (Sturdy, 1997). This term, escape into work, refers to how workers deal with broing and monotonus work by establishing routines and rituals that enable them to turn off and perform tasks without actively thinking about the work being performed and what is taking place around them (Knights and Willmott, 2007, p.398).

Available change models

There are several models available.

Lewin's three step model

Step 1

Unfreezing the present - Forces that maintain current behavior are reduced through analysis of the current situation. Imperatives for change are realized through dialogue and re-educational activities such as team building and personal development.

Step 2

Moving to a new level - Having analyzed the present situation, new structures and processes are put in place to achieve the desired improvements.

Step 3

Refreezing the new level - The changes implemented are then 'frozen' in place to ensure that they become part of normal working procedures. This is done by putting in place supporting mechanisms such as policies, procedures and reward systems.

Action research model

Diagnose need for change:

Gather data, analyze data, and decide intervention objectives

Introduce need for change:

Implement desired incremental or quantum change

Evaluate and stabilize change:

Determine effectiveness of change and refreeze new conditions

Organizational development (OD) model

OD Model describes an approach to organizational change that is both systematic and long-lasting.

OD involves goal setting, action planning, implementation and monitoring.

OD involves the application of theory and research from a number of disciplines, including behavioral science, to the solution of organizational problems.

OD should be both systemic and systematic.

OD should focus on accomplishments and results

Beer et al model

Beer and his colleagues advocate a model that recognizes that change is more complex and therefore requires a more complex, albeit still uniform set of responses to ensure its effectiveness. They prescribe a six-step process to achieve effective change. They concentrate on 'task alignment', whereby employees' roles, responsibilities and relationships are seen as key to bring about situations that enforce changed ways of thinking, attitudes and behaving. Their stages are:

Mobilize commitment to change through joint diagnosis.

Develop a shared vision of how to organize.

Foster consensus, competence and commitment to shared vision.

Spread the word about the change.

Institutionalize the change through formal policies.

Monitor and adjust as needed.

Kotter's eight stage model

1. Establish a Sense of Urgency

Often employees do not take the need for change seriously enough; the organization is often very complacent. The effective change leader will educate the organization about the urgent need for change and the consequences of sticking to the status quo.

2. Create a Guiding Coalition

The change leader should assemble a group of people who support the need for change and have enough institutional clout to make change happen; the task is then to get this coalition to work together as a team.

3. Develop a Vision and Strategy

A change leader needs to present a picture (or vision) of what the organization will look like after the change and to propose strategies to move the organization to this ideal state. The goal of the vision is to get employee buy-in, so employee participation in articulating the vision is useful.

4. Communicate the Change Vision

The change leader must coordinate a communications effort that broadcasts the new vision and strategies. Management must communicate the vision of change to all relevant employees to further develop buy-in. Kotter believes that the guiding coalition should "model the behavior expected of employees."

Empower Action

Management should remove barriers that impede change. Employees should know that acting in accord with the vision will be rewarded. Risk taking should be encouraged.

6. Generate Short-Term Wins

By breaking up the desired change into smaller steps, change leaders can create a feeling of progress as well as opportunities to reward employees for success. This progress should be communicated widely so it is recognized throughout the organization that change is happening.

7. Consolidate Gains and Produce More Change

Change leaders can use the increased credibility that comes with early "wins" to alter whatever in the organization doesn't fit the vision. Recruiting and promoting those who can advance the change process (or perhaps even help lead it) is vital in continuing progress.

8. Anchor New Approaches in the Culture

Emphasizing the benefits of the change effort, and linking it to organizational success, is one way to help anchor the new approach. The idea is to have new practices replace the old culture. (This final step takes time; it comes last in the transformation process).

Change implementation model for the selected organization

Manager of the product developmenet department realize the need of a custom made software which includes the formulas and the common terms and figures, which uses almost in every excel sheet, and allow user to finish its work in less time efficiently and effectively. While working with costing and knit-dyeing plans in excel sheet there are chance of human error existed in calculations which may result in the huge variances in time action plan, and sometime, in the costing of product. So manager at renfro's product development department choses the ACTION RESEARCH MODEL for implementing change in this organization.

Action Research Model, The Chosen Model

Action research model consists on the following three steps.

Diangnose need for change.

Introduce need for change.

Evaluate and stabilize change.

Diagnose need for change

Manager at renfro crescent pvt. Ltd. diagnose that the working with the excel sheet is a long process and may have chances of human errors which can adversly effect the organization. Because if the human error occurs in the costing process then there are chances that they quote lesser price of a product to their buyer and bearing loss or loosing the buyers trust by quoting higher price in error. Human error in time action plan may result in the extended finishing time.

For reducing such errors and to safe time he introduce a need of an oracle based software with the help of IT manager. The software includes pre-added formulas and figures which are commonly used in the organization and, in turn, save time and reduces human errors.

Introduce need for change

The manager proposed this software plan to his top management and introduced all the benefit of the software which was not only approved but also greatly appereciated by the top managers. After introduction of this change to the top manager he proposed this needed change to the employees of the organization through meetings, seminars and also by taking notice of any mistake made due to excel sheet entry. Also he compare the effectiveness and efficiency of the other organizations which are in the same business and using softwares. Thus he presented a clear picture to the organization that they really need this change.

Evaluate and stabilize the change

After working with the IT department the research and development department's manager made an oracle based software and replaced the excel with that software gradually. He start the implementation of this project from his own department and showed a visible difference between the two. He evaluate the performance with the previous results and found very less problems and erros in the generated results. He involved the CEO of the company in this project who appereciated him through out the work and due to efficieny of the results CEO awarded him bonuses and appraisal. So other departments gets inspired and impress and ready to accept the proposed change.

Problem faced by the manager

Mainly the problem faced in implementing the oracle based software was that the employee was using the excel sheet from several years and they are very use to working on the excel. Also excel is a user friendly software and even a normal person can deal with it. So people mainly working in ware house and the supervisor in production department resist that change because they don't want to replace the excel software which is a routine for them. They resisted it but the manager, with his effective thinking, compel them to think that they really need the software.

Justification of the chosen model

I have chosen the action research model for the change implementation in my orgainzation because when i start working there i felt that we were taking too much time in simple plans to get completed and also i found too much errors in time action plan and specially in the costing of the product. Also there was not too much significance resistance for me to face. I identified the problems with fact and figures and practically proved to the employee that we can improve our working with the help of this change. People already have the idea of data entry so they are able to easily cop with the new software.

Action research is an interactive inquiry process that balances problem solving actions implemented in a collaborative context with data-driven collaborative analysis or research to understand underlying causes enabling future predictions about personal and organizational change.

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