Leading and Changing Organisations
Organizational change is carried out in order to alter the prevailing organizational environment to one that will enable it to achieve the desired result. Organizational change can only take place when an organization is under good leadership. Change is ceasing to carry out activities in a specific manner and to carry a new methodology (Bass, 1990). Transformation is the process of alteration of the already existing techniques of achieving objectives in order to make them effective and efficient. This paper seeks to discuss change within the organization. It will achieve this objective through the analysis of various models of organizational change that have been advanced by several scholars and professionals. The paper will also talk about a variety of factors that should be put into consideration with regard to change within an organization. It will discuss some of the reasons that lead to change within the organization. It will also point out some of the challenges that an organization faces during the implementation of changes. In conclusion, the paper will highlight various techniques and methodologies of establishing whether the organization has been successful at implementing the desired changes.
Diagnose a particular problem you will address
Over the years, Walmart has been experiencing a high employee turnover per annum. The employee turnover is estimated to be close to seventy percent per annum thus making the organization have one of the highest employee turnovers per annum. As a result of this, this paper will seek to establish some of the leading causes of this turnover, as well as identify various corrective mechanisms that can be used to reduce it (Burke, 2011). In order to identify efficient leadership and change mechanisms, we shall compare can contract human resource management practices between Target Company and Walmart. This is due to the fact that, the two organizations are large retail outlets and they boast of large market shares. In addition, Target is able to retain more employees per year compared to Walmart.
Walmart needs to establish the root cause of the employee turnover. The major root cause of the high employee turnover at Walmart is due to the poor working conditions of the employees, prevailing leadership crisis, and low levels of motivation amongst the employees (Collins, 2001). In order to reduce the employee turnover, the organization needs to implement a series of changes. The changes should be centered on enhancing the level of motivation amongst employees, and providing solutions to the prevailing leadership crises.
Propose a change initiative that you think would work in addressing the problem
Target Company is focused on ensuring that the employees enjoy working with the organization as well as they feel part of the organization. Target has developed multiple programs for that are aiming at ensuring the comfort of the employees. Target has several leadership programs which are aimed at developing leaders within the organization. The company also has effective and efficient communication channels. Target has put in place several communication channels in order to guarantee that information is effectively and efficiently shared throughout the organization (Connor, 2003). Target has a well structured motivation program which appreciates that the employees are both financially and socially wired. Their motivation perks put into consideration both financial incentives and non – financial incentives. In addition to that the motivation perks also put into consideration the immediate family members of their employees.
As such, Target has devised a complex and multifaceted motivation program that is devised to ensure the well being of the employees. Target offers all of its employees’ competitive pay, and insurance coverage. In addition to this the company’s motivation programs address various aspects of an employees’ well being. These aspects are health, finances, social and community (Cunliffe, 2011). Health aspects are addressed through the provision of health benefits which include: Rewards and programs to encourage healthy actions, team member life resources maternity support programs, and tobacco cessation programs among others. The financial aspects are catered for through the development of the 401 (K) program, and life insurance programs. The organization has put established several leadership programs that are aimed at creating leaders. The leadership programs include: On boarding, coaching and mentoring, training and development programs, career planning, and recognition programs among others. Target has developed effective channels of communication. The organization uses its social programs such as team member networks, social networks and organizing events.
Accordingly, Walmart needs to put in place various programs that will enable the organization to develop a suitable and conducive working environment. Walmart needs to devise motivation perks that are aimed at making the employees remain productive at the workplace as well as for attracting new employees. The employee motivation perks will also enable the company to reduce the prevailing levels of employee turnover (Demers, 2007). Walmart needs devised programs for nurturing leadership skills that aim at developing competent leaders that will effectively and efficiently manage the organization. Walmart needs to concentrate on the development of several communication channels that will augment the streaming of information all through the organization.
Particularly, Walmart needs to concentrate more on employee motivation. This is mainly because of the high employee turnover that the organization has been witnessing in the course of the past few years. The organization needs to treat the employees as associates. Walmart needs to rename their human resource department and renamed it people’s department. The organization should develop the culture of calling their employees only by their first name as well as displaying only one name on the employee name tag (El Kahal, 2001). Walmart should also put in place a health care benefit program that allows employees to access medical insurance cover at low prices. The organization needs to facilitate the employee to gain a sense of ownership in the organization. This can be done through enabling their employees to acquire company stock at discounted prices and without any brokerage fees. The organization should devise a cash incentive scheme that will enable the employees to gain additional income contingent on the performance of the company. Walmart can also hire a special team of psychologists who will provide guidance and counselling services to their employees.
In line with the development of leadership, Walmart needs to put in place educational perks that enable employees that have worked with the organization for more than one year as full time employees or more than three years as part time employees. The organization should also create programs for developing leadership skills amongst the employees. In addition to that, employees should undergo through internal promotions as a way of enabling them to develop their leadership potential (Greenstein, 2009). More leadership programs will enable the organization to have employees who are good at decision making. These leadership programs will enable the employees to be able to conduct their work effectively whenever they are charged with the responsibility of supervision or management. Recently, Walmart developed a main communication program that is known as the door open program that allows employees to walk into the office of the store manager to present their complaints or suggestions. This program will enable the management to improve the overall flow of information throughout all levels of the organization. Walmart should develop more leadership programs as well as increase the number of communication channels (Todem, 2005). The development of more effective communication channel will ensure that information flows effectively and efficiently throughout the organization. Good communication channels make the working environment more conducive because employees are able to present their opinions and receive feedback from the concerned parties.
Identify appropriate methods and tactics for change
There exist various relevant theories of organizational change and business improvement that can be implemented in order to enable Walmart to achieve the desired changes. These theories will provide insights into the process of strategy formation and implementation over time. In the year nineteen eighty seven, a scholar by the name of Suchman claimed that there are two possible approaches to open sea navigation (Uhl-Bien, 2006). The two approaches are the European and the Trukese. Suchman claimed that the European approach normally begins with the preparation of a plan. This plan is used for the purposes of determining the course of action that people will take. She went ahead and explained that under the European approach, all the actions are executed according to the plan. The individuals tasked with the implementation of the plan ensure that they have out considerable effort in order to ensure that they stay on course. She points out that in the event that something occurs by surprise; the first thing to do is to change the plan. After changing the plan, the individuals tasked with the implementation can carry out their task thus ensuring that they are able to respond to the changes as effectively as possible. The reason as to why the plan is changed before anything else is solely due to the fact that the European approach heavily relies on a plan.
In this perspective, the Trukese approach commences with the statement of an objective or objectives. Upon the statement of the objective, the organization can now be able to determine its course of action. It is imperative to be aware of the fact that, all the actions of the organizations under the Trukese approach are geared towards the achievement of the stated objectives. Under this approach, the organization usually responds to varying conditions as they arise. In order to be able to respond effectively, the organization utilizes relevant information from all kinds of sources (Swailes & Senior, 2010). This information enables the organization to be able to effect proper decisions that will ensure that it has adapted to the prevailing conditions.
The second theory or model was advanced in the year nineteen fifty two by a gentleman known as Kurt Lewin. This man explained that change is a process that entails three key stages which are unfreezing, change, freezing. During the first stage which is unfreezing, the organization usually prepares for change. It does so by assessing the external factors in order to determine the kind of change that is required within the organization. The organization also conducts various meetings in order to determine the kind of change that will be effected within the organization (Smith M. B., 1968). During this stage, the management of the organization determines the techniques that will be employed so as to affect transform within the organization. The management usually holds meetings with the members of staff in order to explain to them the nature of change that is desired within the organization as well as how the desired change will be realized.
The second stage of this three stage model is changing. During this stage, the members of staff of an organization are tasked with the responsibility of effecting the desired change within an organization. In order for them to effect the desired changes in a manner that is effective and efficient, the members of staff usually follow guidelines that are provided by the management. These guidelines serve to ensure that the change being effected is uniform as well as effectively and efficiently implemented within an organization (Pedler, 2010). It is important to take note of the fact that the members of staff are deemed to be responsible for implementing the desired changes as a result of this if they detest the changes, the desire changes will be poorly implemented, or the implementation process may be hampered by a lot of resistance.
The final stage of the Kurt Lewin three stage models is freezing. Upon the implementation of the desired changes, the organization puts effort to regain stability. The organization does this by ensuring that most of the members of staff are supporting the desired changes. The management retrains their personnel on how to carry out their activities given the prevailing changes in the working environment (Wofford, Whittington, & Goodwin, 1998). The management also formulates and implements mechanisms that will ensure that the organization is able to assess their level of conformity to the changes as well as recommend corrective mechanisms.
How the change would be assessed, and indicate the expected milestones and resource requirements for change to occur
The impact of the recommended changes can be assessed by establishing whether there is a decline in the levels of employee turnover. This is due to the fact that it is one of the principal causes of transformation at Walmart. This can be accessed through carrying out a population count on the employees. Thereafter, the company can establish the number of new employees that it has hired and the number of employees that it has lost in the course of the year. The organization needs to conduct various surveys that seek to establish the employees’ perspective on the changes (Morgan, 2000). The employees should also be afforded the opportunity to provide recommendations with regard to the kind of working environment that they desire. This will enable the management to make further improvements in the employee working conditions thus increasing the levels of productivity. The organization needs to carry out a survey that will enable them to determine the number of employees that are attending the leadership programs. Thereafter, the management should analyze the performance of the employees so as to establish the impact that the leadership programs have on the productivity employee.
On this aspect, the management of the organization needs to take account of the cost of training and leadership programs. This will enable it to carry out a cost benefit analysis of the programs. The managements need to establish the impact of the fluctuations of foreign exchange rates on the realization of the desired changes. The management of an organization needs to take into account the cost of funding that is available within that specific region. This will enable the management to make changes to the capital structure that will take account of the prevailing levels of cost of funding. The management needs to ensure that it is aware of the stability of the currency in which most of its leadership products are denominated in. This will enable the organization to institute changes that will prevent the realization of foreign exchange losses (Pedler, 2010). The management also needs to be aware of the growth rate of the economy; this will enable the management to formulate changes that will ensure that the organization is growing at the same growth rate as the local economy. If the managements seek to introduce certain changes in the cause of an unstable economic environment, this might not be possible. This is because certain changes such as the funding of employees' educations as well as the increase of the wages and salaries of the employees cannot be introduced when the economy is struggling.
In the course of the implementation of the desired changes, it is expecting some employees will be suspicious about the changes that are being introduced. As a result of this, there might be various forms of resistance from the employees (Gordon, Whelan-Berry, & Hining, 2003). This is because it is human to fear and resist change. However, the levels of resistance are expected to be minimal, and this is due to the fact that these changes are geared towards improving the lives of the employees.
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