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Organisational Change.

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FdSc Food Manufacturing Management

Module 2: Social Psychology for Managers

Organisational Change

The one true test of an organisation is its ability to change to the seemingly random and turbulent business environment. A traditionalist view is to see the organisation as a living organism, and that it needs to evolve in order to ensure continued survival.

Common focal points for change include:

  • Structure
  • Strategy
  • Culture
  • Technology
  • Job design

The foundations of OC begin in looking at how change in the workplace can affect the individual, and how they can impact on the workplace.

One of the key points in this area of research is with regards to Resistance to change, which is not restricted necessarily to any particular level of staff.

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, Defamation and Expulsion.

Some of the reasons for opposition may include:

  • Innate dislike of change
  • Institutionalised practices
  • Threat to interests
  • Response to a bad idea
  • Dislike of Uncertainty
  • Selective information processing

Because resistance to change is so ideologically biased, it can be said that it re-enforces the unitarist approach, when it may be more accurate to describe it as a resistance to a particular concept of what action is desirable. An opposing perspective may be that of the pluralist approach whereby the consideration that resistance is just another alternative model for organising the workplace.

According to Robbins et al (1995), a pattern arises as individuals react which translates into four emotional stages:

  • Denial
  • Resistance
  • Exploration
  • Commitment

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  1. Diagnosis
  2. Analysis
  3. Feedback
  4. Action
  5. Evaluation

Possible corrective actions to help to implement the transition may be to reward desired behaviour during the transition to its objective state, and encourage participation in planning. Additional facilitators of change would also be to analyse the nature of the group (as discussed in group organisation) and decide whether techniques used for reformation of groups would also apply to a modification of the organisation.

One clear concept stays true throughout, and that is that change is inevitable, either through technological, socio-political factors, or other unknown factors, and it is in the ability to change and alter over time that dictates the success of a business over time.

Steve Norman        -  -

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