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Organizational Development and Change (Essay Sample)


Module 2 DQ1
Kotter's 8-step process for change describes characteristics of transformational change. Identify reasons why transformational efforts fail.
Module 2 DQ 2 
Compare and contrast the roles of shared vision, values, and actions in change leadership.
Only through understanding the genesis of complacency, can one begin to craft and design organizational leadership, management, and processes that reduce the implications of destructive complacency within the organizations that one manages and leads. Leaders need first to look at their own management and leadership philosophies and the systems and processes that they have created. Through this review, the root causes of complacency will be identified and a healthy leadership and management practice can be designed and implemented to encourage growth, vitality, and change in response to the marketplace. Candidly, this implementation is often more easily said than done. Truly authentic organizational introspection is rare. It is difficult for people who have created the systems, structure, and processes to evaluate objectively the need for change. Quite often, competition and pressures of the marketplace force the hand, so to speak, and compel organizations to make changes.
Complacency is a problem for most organizations. Its presence is characterized by a tendency for the organization to continue its practices, even in the face of data and/or demands for change from the marketplace. The history of organizations is replete with examples of failure to respond to competitors or consumers that have expressed a need for different products, services, or research and development investments. In fact, many once-great firms, some even household names, have simply vanished either by business failure or by acquisition (e.g., Eastern Air Lines, Bendix, Westinghouse). Complacency creeps into organizations in a number of ways. Kotter (1996) describes a number of offending leadership behaviors that create the conditions for complacency in the decision-making mechanisms, systems, and processes of the organization.
Kotter (1996) discusses some specific actions needed to raise urgency levels within the organization for change initiatives. When business conditions dictate, managers in an organization must be brought to the level of belief that the status-quo is unacceptable. Once managers have a level of belief that the status-quo must change, the sense of urgency in the organization will create the momentum required to sustain members of the organization throughout the required change.
The second principle of effective change leadership is identifying the guiding coalition for change. Leading with the proper motivation and having the proper skills, expertise, and authority within the guiding coalition is critical for successful achievement of the change effort.
"Ready-Aim-Fire" is the organizational cry of many organizations. In other words, too many organizational change efforts are characterized by premature and ill-conceived actions without a thorough game plan for change. It is suggested that "Ready-Aim-Fire" is most productive to orchestrate organizational change. Yet, the absence of a clear target makes effective planning difficult. In the absence of a target, execution becomes a series of paths, and a wandering search of the path to the change effort.
Vision and related goals of the change initiative must be clearly stated and provide a clear target for the guiding coalition. The effective guiding coalition will develop a series of strategies for implementing that vision. The articulation of the vision with clarity and urgency, together with a series of strategies for implementation and execution of the vision, is required. The organization has a need to understand exactly what needs to change in order to be effective at designing when and how that change will occur.
Kotter (1996) identifies the characteristics of effective vision (p. 72). Vision requires the guiding coalition to be the following:
• Imaginable but feasible
• Desirable
• Focused but flexible to allow for alternatives paths
• Communicable with plans and actions
Jick (1989) explores the importance of vision and states that organizational leadership will always have a preference for vision development, whether it is working from the bottom up or the top down. Some leaders prefer to have large numbers of individuals involved in the vision, while others choose a vital few. The important feature is not the direction one chooses to develop the vision, rather that the vision is developed and well understood throughout the organization. A vision that becomes well integrated in the fabric of the thought processes within an organization will be clear and actionable.
In order to engage people in a compelling vision that galvanizes them to action, the guiding coalition may have to work on the concept of dissatisfaction. Employees who are pleased with the status quo will not have a compelling reason to change. Spector (1989) discusses the importance of raising the dissatisfaction level within the organization on the dimensions requiring change in order to embrace and engage employees in the change activity required.
Themes that continue with regard to change management are clarity and communications that galvanize members of the organization toaction. Creation of a compelling vision that galvanizes employees to action is not easy. It takes thought, time, and a guiding coalition to craft a compelling change initiative.
Jick, T. D. (1989). The vision thing. In T. D. Jick and M.A. Peiperl, Managing change: Cases and concepts (pp. 95-101). New York: McGraw-Hill.
Kotter, J. P. (1996). Leading change. Boston: Harvard Business School Press.
Spector, B. A. (1989). From bogged down to fired up: Inspiring organizational change. In T. D. Jick and M. A. Peiperl, Managing change: Cases and concepts (pp. 113-120). New York: McGraw-Hill.


Organizational Development and Change
Institutional Affiliation;
The notion of change is a phenomenon that organizations face on a daily basis. Change is a process termed by many as a gradual, rapid and radical process that impacts an organization either positively or negatively (Rana, Baumgardner, Germanic, Graff, Korum, Mueller, & Peterson, 2013). This paper seeks to determine the rationale for the failures that have been witnessed in transformational change efforts. A comparison and contrast of the roles of shared values, visions and actions in change leadership will also be reviewed.
Rationale behind Transformational Change Failures
Guiding the change process within an organization may at times be a test to any leader considering the fact that no business can survive without reinventing itself. In essence, it is essential to note that leading change may be difficult. The main reasons behind transformational change include;
Lack of a Vision;
Every successful transformational effort in an organization is guided by a coalition developed of the picture of the future that becomes easier to communicate and appeal to stockholders, employees, and even customers. Visions clarify the directions that any organization needs to take in achieving its goals (Rana, et. at). Without a sensible vision, a transformational effort has the capacity to evoke a series of confusing and mismatched projects that can lead an organization in a wrong direction. The lack of sound vision may fail a transformational change, a factor that may lead an organization in making plenty plans, programs, directives that are not tied to an organization's vision.
Undercommunicating an Organizations Vision;
After developing an a...
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