Managing Change: Change Models and Initiatives

Introduction

Change is part of every organization involved in business or any kind of activity. Therefore managing change is an important discipline for all organizations. The development of change initiatives and models involves certain procedures and considerations. The perceptions of stakeholders as well as their cultural orientation play an important role in the process of developing change initiatives. The paper is about the process of developing change models and initiatives. Special reference shall be given to the Squash pumpkin case. The paper will discuss all these factors in detail.

Handling Change

The primary lesson that is learned in the Squash pumpkin case is the importance of context and culture in effecting change. The consultant’s experience in Tonga points to the importance of understanding the different opinions of various stakeholders in the process of handling change. This is because each stakeholder perceives a change in different ways (Silverthome 2005). Therefore, there always exist different ways of approaching the change that must be considered. At the same time, the context of the situation has a lot of significance on the process of change. When the consultant in the Tonga pumpkin case came up with their “solutions”, they realized that they were not relevant to the specific problem. They, therefore, had to involve all the stakeholders so as to come up with a change model to follow. Had they stuck to their solutions then the process of change could not have been successful. It is necessary to also consider the context when proposing or implementing change. The consultants had to set aside their solutions so as to understand the context of the situation. This was instrumental in the success of the process. This shows the importance of understanding the context before coming up with the model of change. This is meant to ensure that the model of change adopted is practical and relevant to the situation in question. Another important lesson is the cultural orientation of the stakeholders involved in the change process. The squash pumpkin case involved several stakeholders, these included farmers, leaders, exporters, importers, shippers and farmworkers. Their involvement in the whole process of change led to the success of the change process. This indicates the importance of involving all stakeholders in the process of change (Hennestad, 1990). Under normal circumstances, people perceive change from a cultural perspective. It is therefore advisable to understand the cultural orientation of each stakeholder so as to be able to appreciate the point of view. The squash pumpkin case is a perfect example through which several lessons about management can be learned. The whole process of improving the quality of pumpkins involved several factors which indicate their importance and how the process of change should be conducted.

The Psychology of Change

When attempting to lead a change initiative it is important to the context and cultural values of stakeholders. This is important since each stakeholder perceives a change in a different way (Van Vensor et. al, 1994). As a result, there are many ways of looking at the change which is represented by the point of view of the respective stakeholders. The stakeholders perceive the situation from a cultural orientation. Under normal circumstances, culture plays an important role in influencing their perception of change. When the cultural orientation of each stakeholder is understood it becomes easy to know their idea of change. From it, it becomes easy to address each stockholder’s idea and perception before coming up with the change model to be adopted. Each stakeholder is important since they play an important role in the whole changing of events. Sidelining stakeholders from the process can be fatal to the whole process (Carnall, 1991). Yet in order to work with each stakeholder in the development of a change imitative involves understanding their cultural values. Context on the other hand is very important when developing a change module that will be relevant and successful. Failure to understand the context of the situation will lead to the failure of the change initiative. For instance, coming up with a change module that does not consider the real context of the situation will be a waste of time since the module will be a flop.

End Notes

Effective change comes from the consideration of the views and perceptions of different stakeholders. Therefore the process of developing a change initiative involves negotiation. Understanding the cultural values of the various stakeholders and the context is very important for the success of the process. The paper has deeply analyzed the process of effecting change in an organization. The Squash Pumpkin case has been used as a point of reference. The experience of consultants in Tonga provides lessons to learn about the whole process of change. More focus has been given on the importance of understanding the cultural values of stakeholders as well as context. For the change initiative to be relevant it is necessary to consider the context when devolving the imitative. This avoids the mistake of prescribing an impractical solution to an organizational problem.

References

  1. Carnall, C. (1991). Managing change. New York: Rutledge.
  2. Hennestad, B. (1990). Cultural perspectives on organizational change. Washington: B. W Hennestad.
  3. Silverthome, C. (2005). Organizational psychology in cross-cultural perspective. New York: NYU Press.
  4. Van, Vensor et al.(1994). Breaking the glass ceiling: can women reach the top of America’s largest corporations? Washington: PERSEUS BOOKS.