Change Management

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As competitions within the global market continue to intensify, change is arguably the only element that ensures organisation survival. Nadler and Tushman (1986) supported the view that organisations must accept change as the corporate way of life to remain competitive. Albeit the notion “change or else perish” sounded relatively simple, it can be difficult to execute to perfection given that change comes in many shapes and forms. Meyerson (2001) stipulated that there is no one right way to manage change and what work for one individual under one set of circumstances may not work for others under different conditions. In other words, there is no one panacea to managing change. In the subsequent parts of this essay, we will explore the various types of change and its characteristics bounded by its scope and pace of change, and further examine some of the ways in which change can best be implemented in the least painful way for organisations.

Grundy (1993) suggested that change comes in three forms - smooth incremental, bumpy incremental and discontinuous. “Smooth incremental change evolves slowly in a systematic and predictable way” (Gundy, 1993). This type of change usually paced at a constant speed and in a relatively clam manner. On the other hand, Gundy (1993) stipulated that bumpy incremental change is like a roller coaster ride where organisation goes through sudden spur periods of interrupted change, triggered by the external environment causing a need to respond imposed by the organisation for achieving efficiency. The third type of change involves a rapid transformation shift in the organisation’s strategy, structure and/or culture where the organisation embraces a new breakpoint in strategy, structure and/or culture and detached itself from the old state (Grundy, 1993).

However, Senior and Swailes (2010) argued that change in itself is far more complicated than what Grundy (1993) had suggested. Plowman, Baker, Beck,...
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