Change is inevitable in an organization. From time to time, there are forces within and outside the organization that forces the organization to change in order to adapt to the changing environment. Organizational change is important since it assists the organization to sustain its operation despite the changes taking place in the environment. Organizational leaders should be in the forefront to ensure that the organization adapts to the changing environment in a positive way (Green, M. 2009). Leaders should realize that there is no single organization that can exist in a vacuum and hence instead of resisting change, leaders should come up with a strategy that will assist the organization to adapt to the changing environment. However there are many factors that leaders should look into before driving the organization to change. They should also come up with strategies that will assist them to overcome resistance from within and outside the organization which are a great impediment to successful change implementation.
Internal and External forces of changes
Change does not just happen but it is triggered by something. There are many internal and external forces that can make a change to happen (Green, M. 2009). There are things, situation, and events which make take place within or outside the organization and consequently change the operation environment forcing the organization to change either in a positive or in a negative way. These things, situations, and events are referred to as driving forces since they drive the organization to change in a given way in order to align with the changes taking place in the environment.
There are two kinds of forces that may instigate organization change. These include:
- Internal forces
- External forces
Internal forces are forces which occur within the organization and therefore they are under the control of the organization. These are forces which the organization can manage through internal changes. They can elicit a positive or negative change in the organization. These forces include: (Green, M. 2009)
a) Poor financial performance
Poor financial performance can be caused by decrease sales or increase cost of operation. Therefore this is an internal factor which can force the organization to change in a given way in order to improve financial performance
b) Dissatisfaction among employees
Dissatisfaction among employees can be caused by different factors but most important will be monetary compensation and relationship with management. This can also force the organization to change in a give way to satisfy employees
c) The need to increase organizational profitability
Organizations operate for profit and when they fail to reach the target profit, they are likely to implement changes in order to attain the target profit.
External forces are forces which are beyond the control of the organization and may also force the organization to change in a given way in order to adapt to the changes. Some of the external force includes: (Green, M. 2009)
a) Change in technology
Technology is constantly changing and hence most organizations have been forced to implement changes in order to align with the changing nature of technology.
b) Political factors
Political factors are beyond organizational control and also force the organization to change to align with new political order in the country.
c) Declining market share owing to competition
Declining market share due to competition is also beyond the control of the organization and may force the organization to change in a given way in order to increase their market share.
Leader and change
A change is not just implemented it is carefully planned and executed. Although they are at the helm of the organization, leaders need to understand that there are different factors that will determine how the change will be planned and executed (Green, M. 2009). All these factors must be carefully looked into and considered in view of the impending change. For example if the organization is faced with declining market share due to the rising competition, it may not necessary increase its output without knowing where the products will be taken. Therefore there are important factors that must be considered before implementing a change.
There are different changes that may happen in an organization. One change can influence is organizational restructuring. This may include merging different departments to make them more effective or laying of some staff. This may be implemented due to declining sales leading to financial constrain. Another change that may occur in an organization may involve changing the culture of the organization. This may include change in management where some managerial position may need to be dismantled to decrease the level of bureaucracy. There are some changes that leaders should resist. These are changes which will not have any positive impact to the organization or are likely to impact negatively on the welfare of the organization. Therefore leaders should assess changes very well before implementing them to know if they will have a positive or negative impact on the organization (Green, M. 2009).
One of the problems that affect any change is resistance. Most individuals want to retain status quo and hence strive to resist change especially if they were not initially involved in planning the change. There are many kinds of resistance including:
- Organizational level resistance which is caused by power and politics
- Group level resistance caused by group norms and culture
- Individual level resistance due to uncertainty and insecurity
- Psychological resistance due to fear of failure
- Logical resistance when change will benefit some and not others