Participation Topic 1: Why organisations change: turbulent times, innovation and the changing workplace.
Our focus in Topic 1 is on the nature of change. Choose up to three articles from the business section of a newspaper or from a business magazine about organisations going through change. For each article, what is the rationale presented for the change? Which of the external and internal pressures considered in the unit are referred to? Are there additional pressures not specifically considered in the unit?
Participation Topic 2: Diagnosis by image.
The focus of Topic 2 is on diagnosis for organisational change. One way of describing an
organisation and how it operates is by using a metaphor or simile such as ‘my organisation is like a well-oiled machine' (it runs very smoothly), or ‘my organisation is a dinosaur’ (it is big, slow-moving, unresponsive to change, and probably headed for extinction). In relation to your organisation what metaphor or simile would you use to describe it? What is it about your organisation that you are trying to convey through this image?
Participation Topic 3: Planning and preparing the change.
In Topic 3 we address issues of recognising the need for change, starting with the change process as well as diagnosing the need for change and gathering and interpreting information for diagnosis. Change occurs as a process, not as an event. Organisational change does not happen because there was an announcement, a kick-off meeting or even a go-live date. Individuals do not change simply because they received an email or attended a training program. When we experience change, we move from what we had known and done, through a period of transition to arrive at a desired new way of behaving and doing our job. Based on your experience at work or elsewhere, list any problems you have encountered in the early stages of the change process that have been associated with: • choice of change agent • quality of the change relationship • identification of the group to be targeted for change • specification of the change issues.
Participation Topic 4: People and culture.
One of the commonly cited causes for the lack of success of organisational change is ‘resistance to change’. As such, it is not surprising that it is a phenomenon that encourages some strong responses. • What symptoms of resistance have you experienced? • Have you experienced both active and passive forms? • Have you experienced them as a resistor yourself (as a recipient of change)? • Have you experienced them as someone responsible for the management of change (as an initiator of change)? • If you could ‘rewind the tape’ would you do anything differently?
Participation Topic 5: Implementing change.
Sometimes, according to Hayes (2018), those leading change give insufficient attention to developing a change strategy fit for purpose. Identify a recent change in your organisation and critically assess the effectiveness of the strategy used to implement it. What situational variables did the organisation under estimate or even fail to take into account when shaping the change strategy?
Participation Topic 6: Sustaining the change.
As we come to the end of our unit this is a time for review and reflection. You will have an opportunity to comment on the unit itself at a later stage. What I would like you to focus on at this point is reflections of the practicing change manager – you!
Consider the following:
•What specifically has impacted your thinking during the unit and why?
•How will it/does it inform your practice as an evidence based practitioner?
•Of the various topics presented in the unit which one resonates best with you? Are there any implications for how you would act in the future?
•If you were to add an idea to managing organisational change, what would be your contribution?
Now profile yourself. It is not necessary to share your profile on the Discussion Board. However, if you feel comfortable, you could share one action and your strategy for attention. One of the implications presented in this unit is that change is a process where there is a complex, and not necessarily predictable, relationship between actions and outcomes. Nonetheless, it is still likely that certain action – or, taking the reverse, certain inaction – will affect the probability of certain outcomes.
Based on the material in the unit, provide a range of actions that you believe are likely to enhance the prospect of a change being successful. For each action, rate yourself. Which are the actions that you have identified as most in need of attention (those you rated poor or very poor)? What could be done to develop capacity in this regard? For example: