Assessing The Communication For Effective Change Management Commerce Essay

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This report is based on the ABF Ltd case study. I will be producing an HRM Strategy for ABF Ltd. A review of the planned maintenance policies, quality levels, quality assurance, utilisation of machine setters and technicians, information and control systems and the manufacturing organisation has already taken place and a number of improvements have started to have a positive impact on the business, however there remain issues which need to be resolved.

There appears to be a breakdown of communications between departments and this is having a detrimental effect on all personnel. The managers are using an autocratic management style, which is alienating the subordinates and is causing conflict. The junior managers and the workforce feel that there is a need for a change but there is a reluctance to change and this appears to be from the senior managers. Senior managers appear to be entrenched in their views and ways of working and are not considering Ideas and suggestions from the more junior personnel, this is causing low morale amongst the workforce. Appraisal of senior staff is not being carried out.

This report will focus on the people management issued involved in managing and leading the changes which be brought about during the introduction of new working practices. The report will discuss the human resources management and performance management issues relating to ABF Ltd and will look into the theories of leading and managing change. An analysis of the key components of change management will be carried out and will suggest how these components could be implemented. How performance management can help focus the workforce towards achieving the companies aims and objectives. An Analysis of different management styles will be discussed and the advantages and disadvantages of each of the styles will be considered and how Improving management style can improve managerial performance, problem solving and managerial effectiveness.

Human Resouces

Human Resources are a set of functions and strategies, which help to develop policies, standards, systems, and in a whole range of areas. The following are typical of a wide range of organizations:

Recruitment and selection (resourcing)

Organizational design and development

Business transformation and change management

Performance, conduct and behavior management

Industrial and employee relations

Human resources (workforce) analysis and workforce personnel data management

Compensation, rewards, and benefits management

Training and development (learning management)

Implementation of such policies, processes or standards may be directly managed by the HR function itself, or the function may indirectly supervise the implementation of such activities by managers, other business functions or via third-party external partner organizations.


Develop a written communication plan to ensure that all of the following occur within your change management process.

Communicate consistently, frequently, and through multiple channels, including speaking, writing, video, training, focus groups, bulletin boards, Intranets, and more about the change.

Communicate all that is known about the changes, as quickly as the information is available. (Make clear that your bias is toward instant communication, so some of the details may change at a later date. Tell people that your other choice is to hold all communication until you are positive about the decisions. This is disastrous in effective change management.

Provide significant amounts of time for people to ask questions, request clarification, and provide input. If you have been part of a scenario in which a leader presented changes, on overhead transparencies, to a large group, and then fled, you know what bad news this is for change integration.

Clearly communicate the vision, the mission, and the objectives of the change management effort. Help people to understand how these changes will affect them personally. (If you don't help with this process, people will make up their own stories, usually more negative than the truth.)

Recognize that true communication is a "conversation." It is two-way and real discussion must result. It cannot be just a presentation.

The change leaders or sponsors need to spend time conversing one-on-one or in small groups with the people who are expected to make the changes.

Communicate the reasons for the changes in such a way that people understand the context, the purpose, and the need. Practitioners have called this: "building a memorable, conceptual framework," and "creating a theoretical framework to underpin the change."

Provide answers to questions only if you know the answer. Leaders destroy their credibility when they provide incorrect information or appear to stumble or back-peddle, when providing an answer. It is much better to say you don't know, and that you will try to find out.

Leaders need to listen. Avoid defensiveness, excuse-making, and answers that are given too quickly. Act with thoughtfulness.

Make leaders and change sponsors available, daily when possible, to mingle with others in the workplace.

Hold interactive workshops and forums in which all employees can explore the changes together, while learning more. Use training as a form of interactive communication and as an opportunity for people to safely explore new behaviors and ideas about change and change management. All levels of the organization must participate in the same sessions.

Communication should be proactive. If the rumor mill is already in action, the organization has waited too long to communicate.

Provide opportunities for people to network with each other, both formally and informally, to share ideas about change and change management.

Publicly review the measurements that are in place to chart progress in the change management and change efforts.

Publicize rewards and recognition for positive approaches and accomplishments in the changes and change management. Celebrate each small win publicly.

Change Management

What is change? Naylor suggests that change is "an irreversible adaption of any feature of it structure, personnel, products or processes" (Naylor. 1999), company need to change for growth, survival and organisational renewal. (Burns and Stalker , 1961) describe organisations as Mechanistic and Organic. ABF Ltd are currently displaying signs of being a mechanistic organisation


Rigid Structure

Autocratic Management Style


Static jobs and skill

Operates within stable markets

Static Technology

Does not react well to change


Invovative and Creative

Participative Management Style


Diversity of specialised Skills

Operates within fast paced markets

Fluid Structure

Responds to rapid and emergent change

Certain triggers have been identified; such as low performance and low morale, which are triggers for job redesigning. Inadequate skills and knowledge base, which is triggering the need for training programmes. Recognition of problems which are a trigger for reallocation of responsibilities.

There are a number of steps involved in implementing change. Firstly the management board need to conduct and environmental analysis, this could take the form of a PESTEL Anaalysis, this will reveal the macroenomic environment tat the company is operating in, it will identify the change drivers, which could be political, economic, socio-cultural, technological, environmental and legal. Once the analysis is complete the change drivers can be used to formulate the change strategy.

A corporate Analysis will reveal the microenomic environment and will identify change drivers by the strength, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that are faced by the organisation. These change drivers will form part of the analysis and will shape the mission, goasl and objectives of the company.

The management board will then need to make choices and consider the options that are presented to them from the analysis and then implement the changes.

The Management board will need to craft a vision for the change and visualise what the organisation will be like when all the changes have been put into place and forecast where the organisations will be in the future, identify what product and services will be offered, how these will be developed in the future and how staff, customers and suppliers will experience them.

All changes needs to have the support of the senior management - managers can influence the change the role of the Chief Executive is to win over the management team for them to support the proposals for change .

The senior management team will need to communicate the visiona dn goals and explain the reasons for implement the change(s), Prepare and commincate a plan of action, put into place a training programme of activities and events which give all personnel the opportunity to see what changes are to be introduced.

Appoint a task force to pilot the changes in small areas of the organisation, and then implement the changes throughout the organisation and finally underrate an on-going review to monitor the effectiveness and take corrective action where necessary.

Despite the care that organisations take with change management process, things to not always go according to plan, so great care must be taken to consider the management prespective and the personal prespective to the changes.

Leadership style

Change Leadership Style - Management Prespective

(Dexter Dunphy and Doug Stace 1994) identified four categories of change leadership style:

Collaborative - involves widespread employee participation in the decisions that affect the workforce and the organisations future.

Consultative - entails limited involvement in setting goals relevant to employees' areas of responsiblity.

Directive - uses managerial authority to reach decisions about change and the future and about how the change will proceed.

Coercive - The Senior Management team forces or imposes the change on the organisation.

They aligned the different styles of change leadership to the type of change being implemented which they categorised as follows:

Fine-Tuning - refining methods, policies and procedures at divisional or departmental level.

Incremental adjustment - modification to strategies, structure and panagement processes at sub strategic levels.

Modular tranfromation - Major restricting of department or divisions wich could be radical, but are at sub organisational level

Corporate Trasformation - This would be a radical shit in strategy, revoluntiary changes throughout the organisation, the structures, procedures and systems or the organisation.

They concluded that different styles of change mangement should be tailored to the tpe of change needed and in some circumstances a directive or coercive approach may be more appropriate that the more employee-friendly approach.

Change Leadership Style - Personal Perspective.

People generally do not like change it can be threatening, disturbing and upset the "way we have always done things" Arthur Bedian1980 suggest that there are four common causes of resistnace to change for a personal perspective, these are:

Lewin 2004, suggested a way of looking at the overall process of making changes. He proposed that organizational changes have three steps. The first step involves unfreezing the current state of affairs. This means defining the current state, surfacing the driving and resisting forces and picturing a desired end-state. The second is about moving to a new state through participation and involvement. The third focuses on refreezing and stabilizing the new state of affairs by setting policy, rewarding success and establishing new standards. Page 97 See Figure 3.2 for the key steps in this process. (Cameron and Green, 2004)

According to (Senge, 1990), learning organisations are places 'where people continually expand their capacity to create results they truly desire, where new and expansive patterns of thinking are nurtured, where competitive aspirations are set free, and where people are continually learning how to learn together.' This can only happen in an organisation that has a distinct strategy to develop their people.

Managerial Performance

Peformance Management is used in a workplaces and organisation where people are required to interact with each other to produce a desired effect, this was defined as "A strategic and integrated approach to increasing the effectiveness of organizations by improving the performance of the people who work in them and by developing the capabilities of teams and individual contributors" (Armstrong and Baron, 1988). On reading the case study it is apparent that the company appraisal system is not being used and managers are unable to determine where they have talent within the company and how best to utilise and measure the performance of the workforce.

The senior managers need to conduct a commitment analysis which has objectives which are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Time-specific (S.M.A.R.T.) and match each of the jobs done within the company to the mission statement of the company. The commitment analysis should, define the purpose of the job, job duties, and responsibilities, describe performance goals with measurable outcomes, determine the priority of each job responsibility and goal. list performance standards for key components of the job. The managerment team will need to to hold interim discussions and provide feedback about employee performance, preferably daily, summarized and discussed, at least, quarterly. Use a 360 degree performance feedback system that incorporates feedback from the employee's peers, customers, and people who may report to him. Develop and administer a coaching and improvement plan if the employee is not meeting expectations.

This will allow them to define the jobs that require to be completed in terms of purpose, customers, product, scope and responsibility of the worker. The analysis can also be used to determine the continuous key objectives and performance standards for each job position. Incentives and bonuses can be linked to certain key performance targets. The analysis will allow the managers to determine the continuous critical objectives and performance standards for each job.

The benefits of using this approach will be that the managers will be able to define strategic and operational objectives and if planned properly will see benefits in sales, operational efficiency and the unlocking of the latent potential in every employee. These benefits will translate into time spent on actually doing their job and will include: direct financial gains, grow in sales, reduction of cost and ultimately alignment of the organization directly behind the CEO's goals. Christensen, describes the role of the Head of HR as the Organisantioal Archietect and states that "Perhaps the greatest contribution of the organizational architect is the ability to see and then help manage the alignment of customer needs; business strategy; and organizational objectives, processes, systems, and structures" (Christensen, 2005) pg 63.

I the workforce know what is expected of them with clear goals and incentives. This will improve employee engagement because everyone understands how they are directly contributing to the organisations high level goals and will create transparency in achievement of goals. The Senior Management team will be have Improved management control and this in turn will lead to a flexible and responsive management of the workforce.

The management team will need to ensure that they monitor and check that the new plans are being followed and assess the impact of the changes and measure performance on a regular basis, this monitoring process will help to improve the good performers and will also allow the mangers to deal will underperformance.

Problem solving

Management Style, what management style should be used. change agents what does he need to do, why employ quality inspectors, we can check for quality. Denial of the current management style, creat more collaborative working. Change management styles.

Managerial effictiveness, Stale, what are the current quality levels, machine utility how can it be streamlined, improve communications at all levels, management chain/orgainsation. Training and empowering personnel.

Management Teamworking, conflict resolution between teams and individuals, improve morale, get buy in from managers and personnel. Communicate the benefits. Performance appraisal for senior managers, include targets, Performance Indicators, goals.

Managment systems and structures, set up clear targets and objectives. Devise an appraisal system. Open honest feedback, build trust. Share knowledge, analyse working practices. Review bonus policy and develop a clear system of bonuses/incentives.

Performance management and problem solving

Why are the changes required, pestel, swot, vision strategy

Force field analysis



ABF Ltd has seen a decline in its performance over a period of xxx years. This has been due to ineffective management practices, stale managers, uncooperative teams unclear policies and un workable appraisal systems. The recommendations made will allow the Managment team to have greater engagement with the work force. The company will see not only and increase in production, but greater communication with the workforce, an improvement in staff morale and greater efficiencies in all strata of the company.