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MHR 405 Lecture Notes - Force-Field Analysis, Judith Chapman, Organizational Culture

Human Resources
Course Code
MHR 405
Shannon Reilly

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Chapter 13: Organizational Change and Development
Challenges leading to change are globalization, hyper-competition and demanding customers, the increasing
diversity of the workforce, continuing technological innovation, and demands for higher levels of moral and
ethical behaviour
Planned organizational change is the process by which organizations move from their present state to
some desired future state to increase their effectiveness. Change that is intentional and goal-oriented.
Research: Organizational (individuals) survival and effectiveness require that organizations (people) change
well before a crisis hits them. Expecting the unforeseen means that leaders view their organizations as open
systems and continually scan and monitor their internal and external environments for potential challenges
and opportunities.
First Order, incremental (development) change: involves adjustments in systems, processes, or structures
with the purpose of maintaining or developing the organization.
-Improvement of a skill or method.
-Fine tuning of organization
-Small improvements
-“status quo is never an option, you’re either moving forward or you’re being left behind”
Second Order, discontinuous(transformational) change: change in which the organization moves to a
radically different and sometimes unknown, future state.
-Revolutionary rather than evolutionary
-Judith Chapman calls it , “gamma change”
-Most difficult type of change as it can dramatically change organizational culture, mission, goals, structure,
and leadership.
(1)Changing the Organizational Structure: (OS) is how an organization’s work
is designed and how departments, divisions, and the overall organization are
-The manner in which the organization changes their OS, such as restructure,
downsize, merge with another company, form strategy alliances, or outsource
part of their operation.
-Downsizing: managers streamline the organizational hierarchy and lay off
managers and workers to reduce bureaucratic costs. It is a way to quickly reduce
labour costs. Might experience negative outcomes: increase workload, decreased family functioning, isolation.
-An organization’s structure is defined by how tasks are formally divided (differentiation) and coordinated
-Mergers and Acquisition:often involve downsizing. Smooth and problematic merger depends on degree to
which senior managers take necessary steps to blend the cultures of the merged companies. The HR
department plays an important role in the success of a merger as does open communication and a carefully
crafted culture change program.
(2&3)Changing the Organization Technology, Work Processes, and Tasks: competitive factors often
require organizations to introduce new equipment, tools, or automation.
-in addition to redesigning jobs, organizations have been trying to change entire work processes
-techniques such as TWM, reengineering (Michale Hammer, J.Champy: redesign how tasks are bundled into roles and
functions to improve organizational effectiveness), flexible manufacturing have become common targets of change
in response to increasing competition and demands for cost reduction and quality.

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(4) Changing People’s attitudes to the organizational culture: pattern of basic assumptions that are
considered valid and that are taught to new members as they way to perceive, think and feel in the
-Culture change takes much longer than structural change because it requires re-examination of corporate
The more one is able to understand individual reactions and causes of resistance to change the better able
one will be to address the concerns and barriers and be able to work with them, and even turn them into
positive forces in the change process.
Individual Reactions against Organization Change:
-people often react to change as a rational response based on self-interest.
-Many centre around the notion of reactance- a negative reaction that occurs when individual feel that their
personal freedom is threatened.
-Refer to employee reaction as resistance to change.
Fear of Unknown
-uncertainty, especially a problem when there has been little communication about the
Fear of Loss
-Employees may fear that they will lose something of value, either material or
psychological “direct cost”.
-May fear job loss, reduction in status, perceived as less expertise, departure of
meaningful interpersonal relationships.
Fear of Failure
-Employees fear that changes will result in increased workloads or increased task
difficulty and they may question their own competencies for handling these.
-Fear that performance expectations will be elevated following the change, and they may
not measure up. Fear that the change itself might fail.
Reluctance to Break
-Change requires habits or routines be broken and that we move outside of our comfort
zones into ambiguous territories.
-(Donald Sull) active inertia: when managers get trapped by success and tend to
respond to the most disruptive changes by accelerating activities that succeeded in the
Selective Perception
-When we receive information that does not fit with the mental model we have created
we either filter it out or ignore it.
-Cynicism does not result from self interest, misunderstanding or low tolerance for
-“loss of faith in the leaders of change based on a history of change attempts that have
not been successful” – “change fatigues”
-peoples perception and reactions to their jobs and changes are shaped by information
from other people in the work environment
-Overcome this type of resistance, managers have to acknowledge past mistakes,
legitimize the causes of concern, and invest time and energy to rebuild trust and keep
their promises.

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Force Fields Analysis Lewis Force Field.
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