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Chapter 16


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Chapter 16I The Concept of Organizational ChangeCommon experience indicates that organizations are far from static They change and these changes have a strong impact on people In and of themselves such changes are neither good nor bad Rather it is the way in which the changes are implemented and managed that is crucial to both customers and organizational members A Why Organizations Must Change All organizations face two basic sources of pressure to changeexternal sources and internal sources External sources include the global economy deregulation and changing technology Internal sources include low productivity conflict strikes sabotage high absenteeism and turnover As environments change organizations must keep pace and internal changes often occur in response to external pressures Sometimes when threat is perceived organizations unfreeze scan the environment for solutions and use the threat as a motivator for change Other times though organizations seem paralyzed by threat behave rigidly and exhibit extreme inertia Without an investment of resources and some modification of routines and processes inertia will occur Organizations should differ in the amount of change they exhibit Organizations in a dynamic environment must generally exhibit more change to be effective than those operating in a more stable environment Also change in and of itself is not a good thing and organizations can exhibit too much change as well as too little B What Organizations Can Change There are several specific domains in which modifications can occur as part of organizational change Factors that can be changed include Goals and strategies Organizations frequently change the goals and the strategies they use to reach these goals Technology Technological changes can vary from minor to major Job design Companies can redesign individual groups of jobs to offer more or less variety autonomy identity significance and feedback Structure Organizations can be modified from a functional to a product form or vice versa Traditional structural characteristics of organizations such as formalization and centralization can also be changed Processes The basic processes by which work is accomplished can be changed Culture One of the most important changes that an organization can make is to change its culture Changing an organizations culture is considered to be a fundamental aspect of organizational change People The membership of an organization can be changed either through a revised hiring process or by changing the skills and attitudes of existing members through training and development Three important points should be noted about the various areas in which organizations can introduce change First a change in one area very often calls for changes in others Failure to
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