Organization X Applying Change Concepts and Theories

Introduction

Organization X is one of the leading multinational companies in the United States. With close to 3 billion USD market share both locally and internationally, this company runs affiliate businesses in the computer, information, financial services, and manufacturing industries (Schawbel, 2015). The successful management of change in Organization X has led to its outstanding profitability and viability over the years even during the most difficult economic times. Nonetheless, highly competitive and unstable business environments have compelled the management to incorporate automation technology into the company’s functional systems. The goal is not only to improve productivity and reliability but also to ensure cost reduction and increased performance.

It is imperative to note that positive change is achieved through the integration of several elements of the change toolkit, which entails a blend of concepts, guidelines, and insights that focus on improving organizational productivity. This essay examines the extent to which Organization X has implemented Kurt Lewin’s model, Kubler-Ross’ change curve, and John P. Kotter’s transformational framework to realize successful execution and monitoring of its change processes in line with elements presented in the change toolkit. Although the above change models have been resourceful for this institution, this paper argues that the incorporation of an alternative tool, namely, the ADKAR change framework, can result in better organizational performance.

Analysis of the Change Toolkit

The change toolkit is a set of conceptual frameworks that equip managers with suitable guidelines to support the implementation of organizational reforms. It is comprised of various tools that define the awareness, recognition, and practicability of the imminent change. It enables managers to assess stakeholders’ views, possible instances of resistance to change, and the feasibility of reforms shortly (Anderson, 2014). The analysis of such aspects leads to the selection strategies that can improve the overall performance of an organization. The directive approach to change undervalues the influence of employees on the change process. However, the change toolkit addresses various factors that often lead to the refutation of a change process. The change toolkit encourages managers and leaders to consider the perspectives of all stakeholders to prepare them for organizational transformations (Drucker, 2017). The participatory strategy presented in the change toolkit emphasizes the importance of considering the views of individuals affected by the change. This approach reduces the chances of resistance from an organization’s staff members.

Ensuring effective processes is increasingly becoming an important element in the management of change in contemporary business institutions. Various challenges often arise due to competition, changing consumer demands and preferences, unfavorable sociopolitical environments, and technology invasion among other factors. Hence, the change toolkit provides guidelines for coming up with the most viable reform designs. The benefit of this strategy is witnessed in Organization X’s change process. Initially, the management created immense awareness of the expected change, including reasons why this company needed to embrace alternative ways of conducting business. The development of the reform strategy involved the adoption of a participative approach whereby every stakeholder contributed to the overall change process. This move resulted in the effective implementation of transformations because of less resistance.

Anderson (2014) asserts that the change toolkit also equips organizations with insights, concepts, and instruments for ensuring an effective communication process, which is considered paramount to the realization of successful reform. The transformation of a particular institution calls for the adoption of a thoroughly researched communication strategy to ensure that involved individuals adhere to the conditions set for the change process (Drucker, 2017). For apt relaying of information to the participants, it is crucial to implement evidence-based communication channels. This process should be monitored and reviewed from time to time to make sure that the change process is coherent with concepts presented in the toolkit.

According to Benn, Edwards, and Williams (2014), change toolkit is comprised of concepts that are aimed at guiding organizations in implementing sustainable reforms. As a result, there is a need for participants to envisage the effect of newly implemented processes on the overall organizational productivity. Measuring the viability of a particular change enables the management to know the scope of restructuring, including the way it should be integrated into the existing organizational framework. Furthermore, auditing the process plays an important role in aligning concepts of the change toolkit with the existing operational conditions. This undertaking ensures that new concepts do not conflict with the prevailing organizational culture. According to Benn et al. (2014), change processes in modern corporate environments involve the implementation of technology-based models that are aimed at improving efficiency. Today, firms are encouraged to take advantage of innovative technologies to optimize productivity and profitability by acquainting workers with skills that are essential to the production process.

How Organization X’s has Implemented Concepts Presented in the Change Toolkit

In the context of Organization X, the management has opted to execute continuous technological improvements to increase its performance in the computer, information, financial services, and manufacturing industries. Bob Chapman, who took over as the CEO of Organization X after the death of his father in 1975, is regarded as one of the most transformative leaders in the world (Schawbel, 2015). Since then, he has conducted various innovative revolutions that have led to the optimization of the productivity and profitability of Organization X. This CEO has always created a proper environment for change by executing participatory strategies to encourage collaboration among all stakeholders. During the leadership of the former CEO, his father, Organization X suffered from poor communications channels, a situation that hindered the interaction between employees and departments. This state of affairs inspired Bob Chapman to execute reform processes that emphasized cooperation from the company’s stakeholders.

During this period of transformation, Organization X integrated appropriate communication channels into the existing corporate framework to improve relationships between the senior and junior management. This strategy created an avenue for implementing change in the organization. Because this company lacked a proper link between the management and employees, the initiation of a change strategy paved the way for improved business processes. However, the CEO was keen to create awareness of the need for restructuring among workers by training them on the purpose of reforms. This environment allowed employees to air their views on the impending change process. According to Brown (2009), feedback is an important element of any communication process. Bob Chapman understood the significance of focusing on proper communication between his employees. This CEO also ensured that every participant’s opinions were considered in the change process.

As outlined in the change toolkit, the sustainability of change is regarded as an imperative facet of organizational reforms. Organization X used this concept as a benchmark for its transformational process. Bob Chapman executed a change approach that has been justifiable since he took over as the CEO. The leader is highly recognized for his love for collaborative efforts and rewarding techniques for the organization’s employees (Kotter & Cohen, 2012). To reinforce sustainability, Chapman regularly reviews his employees’ performance. This practice allows the management to evaluate the impact of executing any changes on the overall organizational productivity.

As revealed in the change toolkit, Organization X has implemented the concept of justifiable reforms through constant monitoring and assessment of the executed change. This strategy allows the company to incorporate new technologies to promote efficiency. Deploying automated systems has become a central part of modern production processes. The introduction of computer systems is not a new phenomenon in Organization X. However, Bob Chapman has always created awareness of the installation of new technology in addition to providing training opportunities for his new and existing team of employees. This inclination to change has enabled Organization X to undergo successful restructuring processes without significant resistance from workers.

Theories and Models Applicable to Organization X

Various theories and models have been applied in the implementation of Organizations X’s transformational processes. In particular, its management has benefited hugely from incorporating Kurt Lewin’s model, Kubler-Ross’ change curve, and John P. Kotter’s restructuring theory into the execution, monitoring, and evaluation of reforms.

Kurt Lewin’s Theory of Change

Kurt Lewin developed his three-stage model was in the 1940s. It is also known as the unfreeze-change-refreeze system. Each of the phases of this model has a significant role to play in the change implementation process. For instance, the unfreezing stage involves the development of insight that the organization needs to transform (Anderson, 2014). According to Brown (2009), Kurt Lewin believed that a change process did not have to be complex. The three levels of this system simplify the execution of organizational reforms. In particular, Kurt Lewin’s unfreezing phase takes the organization through several processes that focus on establishing its status and the need for improvement. Organization X depended on the unfreezing phase to discover various challenges that hindered proper interaction between its junior and senior management teams. Bob Chapman identified the need for changing the existing state of affairs to develop an environment that encouraged collaboration. As a result, the management of Organization X began to recognize employees’ views, including their contribution to its overall success.

The second stage of Lewin’s model involves the initiation of the planned reform (Kirkpatrick, 2001). This change phase is seen as a transition period that requires the management to be patient since the objectives of reform processes are not achieved abruptly. Organization X executed this phase to remove any hindrances to teamwork. Bob Chapman implemented it in a manner that ensured employees’ inclusion in decision-making plans. According to Kirkpatrick (2001), the application of this approach to the existing framework triggered the need for self-development among employees, which underpinned the participative strategy embraced by Kurt Lewin’s change framework. The move by Organization X to undertake this strategy resulted in increased productivity and the advancement of workers’ leadership skills. However, the transition process for this company took over fifteen years to achieve its present-day prowess in the international market (Schawbel, 2015).

The last step is known as refreezing. According to Anderson (2014), this stage entails various practices such as balancing and the reinforcement of new business conditions. Organization X has implemented the refreezing phase through constant monitoring, maintenance, and the promotion of internal relationships among its departments. This company also ensures frequent evaluations of employees’ performance as a way of enhancing teamwork in line with concepts presented in the change toolkit. This tendency enables the management to seek workers’ opinions to find new ways of promoting efficiency in the company. Anderson (2014) reveals that employees often criticize existing organizational systems. Hence, seeking their opinions can help change initiators to execute evidence-based processes that can lead to the realization of the targeted business objectives.

Kubler-Ross’ Change Curve

The change curve by Kubler-Ross is a five-stage framework that helps organizations to ensure optimal profitability as they approach closure. According to Serra and Kunc (2015), phases of Kubler-Ross’ change curve include denial, annoyance, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. The rejection stage was evident in Organization X before Bob Chapman took over as the CEO. Its management had earlier faced difficulties in accepting change due to the former CEO’s conventional leadership styles. The realization of the existing retrogressive production systems together with poor cooperation among employees compelled the new head to restructure the organization. This situation led to the second stage of the change curve, bargaining.

Due to plummeting profits because of the prevailing status quo, the CEO selected a group of top executives to examine whether there was a need for conducting reforms. This phase led to the development of the depression stage since some employees were adamant about any change process following fears of being fired and reshuffling. In the end, the identified team of administrators managed to train workers regarding the importance of transforming Organization X. This breakthrough was realized by considering employees’ views and including them in the company’s decision-making processes. Consequently, the implementation of the change curve by Kubler-Ross has enabled Organization X to become one of the leading United States’ companies in the computer, information, financial services, and manufacturing industries.

John P. Kotter’s Change Model

John Kotter’s change framework takes the reform process through eight phases that guide an organization towards the achievement of positive results. According to Benn et al. (2014), the initial stage of this model emphasizes the creation of a situation that demands an instant course of action. After assuming the position of the CEO in 1975, Bob Chapman realized the need for reforming the existing organizational framework and culture to save his company from the detriments of the lack of collaboration. It was important to establish an environment that encouraged teamwork among not only employees but also other stakeholders. This move led to improved productivity.

The next stage of Kotter’s change system involves the development of a strong team to lead the transformational process. Bob Chapman believes that success is measured by the way leaders influence the lives of other people. This guiding principle is central to the implementation of change processes in Organization X (Kotter & Cohen, 2012). Everybody matters under the leadership of Chapman. Indeed, he believes in the existence of power in caring for employees. The benefit of this stage in the reform plan was realized when the CEO embarked on creating strong partnerships with senior executives of Organization X to help in the monitoring and evaluation of the awaited transformation. In the third step, Kotter’s change framework emphasizes the importance of establishing a clear and tactical vision that directs the reform process towards success. In the context of Organization X, Bob Chapman advocated for improved cooperation among employees and stakeholders to promote the accomplishment of both short-term and long-term business objectives (Petrou, Demerouti, & Schaufeli, 2018). The CEO developed all-encompassing values that helped in transforming the existing organizational culture.

The fourth stage of Kotter’s change model entails communicating the company’s vision. According to Kotter and Cohen (2012), there is a need to publicize an organization’s vision regularly to ensure a successful transformational strategy. In the CEO’s book titled Everybody Matters: The Extraordinary Power of Caring Your People Like Family, the leader acknowledges the importance of adhering to values that underpin the transformation process. This CEO has continually reminded his employees about the company’s vision and the need for working towards its realization. Kotter’s change framework also accentuates the elimination of hindrances to organizational growth.

Kotter and Cohen (2012) emphasize the significance of establishing programs to oversee and bolster the identification of obstacles that can deter the transformational process. Bob Chapman ensures that Organization X maintains powerful coalitions among individuals and teams to detect challenges in advance and plan for feasible solutions. This strategy has helped to alleviate any possible refutation of change by employees since it creates a sense of belonging to the organization. One of this company’s all-time objectives is to optimize profitability while at the same time ensuring that its workforce embraces evidence-based practices in line with its vision. As a result, reputable leadership is highly regarded in the management of Organization X. Kotter’s change framework has helped this company to realize many short-term goals under the leadership of Bob Chapman.

The Suggested Change Model

The theories and models discussed above have transformed Organization X into a highly profitable company in America. However, to thrive in today’s dynamic business environment, the company can incorporate the ADKAR change model (Cameron & Green, 2015). This approach to organizational reforms focuses on the accomplishment of specific goals during the restructuring process. This model emphasizes elements such as ambitiousness, receptiveness, competence, apt communication, and fortification of the change objectives. It underpins the participatory approach whereby every stakeholder is involved in the change process. This framework also creates a sense of belonging, which promotes teamwork among employees and departmental heads (Dawson & Andriopoulos, 2017). The ADKAR change model encourages the management team of Organization X to create awareness of reforms among participants. It also acquaints them with the necessary knowledge about the change process. The implementation of the proposed change model will enable Organization X to realize justifiable transformations, which will result in increased productivity. As this company continues to boost interdisciplinary and interdepartmental cooperation, the proposed framework will play an active role in promoting the sustainable implementation of change.

Conclusion

This study has revealed numerous change management theories and models that have led to the success of Organization X. The selection and execution of appropriate reform strategies have made this company one of the leading corporations not only in the United States but also globally. Organization X has demonstrated a clear articulation of conceptual frameworks presented in the change toolkit. As a result, its managers have been equipped with suitable guiding principles that underpin the implementation of organizational reforms. Kurt Lewin’s model, Kubler-Ross’ change curve, and John P. Kotter’s transformational framework have been used to enhance teamwork and leadership growth in Organization X. These approaches have led to improved operational efficiency. It is important to note that the integration of the ADKAR transformation strategy into the existing organizational culture will even lead to the realization of change sustainability, which will result in higher productivity.

References

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