To: Vice President Pontiff
From: General Manager
RE: PLAN FOR CHANGE
In the last one year I have had the opportunity to understand the operations of the company and the employees’ way of working. I have also recruited three managers in the hope of streamlining operations, increasing profits and achieving the company’s goals. Despite this, there is a lot of employee resistance especially from those who have been with the company since inception. This has affected the effectiveness of the new Managers to work with existing in employees. It is in this regard that I propose a plan for change to deal with the resistance. This will ensure that profits do not continue to drop and that all employees are working together towards the vision of the company. The following is the plan for change and rationale behind it (Cameron, 1994).
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The most important thing we must keep in mind when facing management of organizational change is to ensure that change is a priority. We as Senior Management must demonstrate commitment. Change requires a clear vision and must involve all the employees in the organization for it to be effective. All employees must understand the benefits of change. We must also ensure that there is the capacity for change in terms of the provision of resources relating to time and finances required to implement change.
The first step is to have a structured management approach. The management will engage senior management as the sponsors of change. This structure will include middle level managers and supervisors as the advocates of change. Management will communicate the need for change, the impact on employees and benefits to employees. This will directly address some of the sources of the resistance to change (Kotter & Schlesinger, 2008).
Secondly, we must expect resistance especially from those who have been with the company for a long time. The project teams that will be created will have the responsibility of working together to address the resistance to change. The teams must be proactive and specific about where the resistance is coming from, and the reasons for resistance. In this case the resistance may come from those who have invested in the current way of working, and those who created the current way of working that need changing.
Thirdly resistance must be addressed and managed formally. The following are the ways the change will be managed. One is to create a change management strategy that includes the anticipated resistance and tactics to manage. Two, the change management plan will focus on moving individual employees through their own change process, and address the barriers for making change successful. It will also include the specific action plan. Third, we must reinforce change through the collection of feedback. This will ensure that management understands how employees are adopting and complying with the new work processes. The feedback will identify gaps to manage resistance when it recurs. Addressing resistance will go on throughout the change management cycle. Changes should be addressed formally so that employees can understand the reasons for change. This ensures that managing change is proactive and not reactive to ensure that resistance does not recur (Kotter & Schlesinger, 2008).
The fourth step is to identify the root causes. Managing change must focus on the root cause of the resistance and not the symptoms. Focusing on symptoms will not yield any positive results. The company must look deeper into what is causing the resistance. Research shows that the primary reasons why employees resist change is; lack of awareness why the change was being made, impact of their current job role, the organization’s past performance with change, and lack of visible support and commitment from Senior management. With this knowledge our company will narrow down to the specific root causes of the current resistance to change. Once the root causes are understood, the management will communicate the need for change. It is also important to address the root causes of resistance at the individual level of the employees.
Finally the management must engage the “Right” Resistance managers. These will be drawn from senior, middle level and front line supervisors. It is important to note that the resistance managers cannot come from human resources, organizational development, and project team members as they will not be effective resistance managers. Managers and front line supervisors are the most effective resistance managers as they are the closest to the front line employees. Change for any company is not a problem; resistance to change is the biggest problem. If we implement the above plan of change and deal with the resistance to change, the company will successfully implement any changes it requires to be successful. Communication is critical in providing a clear understanding of the goals and objectives of change. Managing organizational change includes action and performance. We must ensure that there is an action plan for implementation and review to check on performance. Managing means keeping open lines of communication for all staff in order to get feedback. Feedback is critical in identifying any problems or obstacles that may arise during the implementation of change (Kotter & Schlesinger, 2008).