Change Management and Communication Plan
Riordan Manufacturing has experienced significant growth in global plastics manufacturing from its origin and establishment in 1991. Developing such superior products and striving to provide solutions to customers has created a large customer base. Riordan Manufacturing is introducing a customer management system that will provide a consistent program that manages our customer’s information. This plan will introduce the change process and how we will communicate this plan to our employees. The formal power structure within the organization is a legitimate power structure with a defined organizational chart that distributes power according to those positions. The informal power structure within the organization is the sales representatives. This group of individuals has developed strong relationships with the customers who have developed expert power pertaining to the customer information. The sales representatives become very protective of that customer relationship and the political power is that they will protect that personal information. For example, the sales rep may have personal cell phone numbers that they will not provide with the customer information to protect the relationship with that customer. The most appropriate and effective organizational structure that will accomplish these planned changes is the matrix structure. This will provide some ownership to the sales representatives of this new program. They will work within their department with their Director of Sales to facilitate a level of comfort with the group with informal power over the customer information to provide that data freely. This will develop a process that will allow the sales group to gather customer data. The information will be sent to the accounting and finance group who will cross reference. Once the data is clear of duplications that information can transfer to the Chief Information Officer’s team to load the data into the program. This structure could reduce the power of the sales management group by recognizing that informal power the sales representatives have. This creates those dual lines of authority with sales management and sales staff. If a conflict arises through this process, a compromise will develop between providing specific necessary components of the customer data while maintaining a level of comfort with the sales representatives. The driving characteristic of the company’s culture will be found in the mission statement. This process change, when communicated must reflect the current mission statement. Specifically the part of the mission statement that states: “We will strive to be a solutions provider for our customers and not be a part of our customers challenges,” (Riordan Manufacturing, intranet home page, 2006). Referring to the mission statement again, as it pertains to its employees, Riordan Manufacturing states, “they will maintain an innovative and team oriented working environment,” (Riordan Manufacturing, 2006). This statement implies that there will be a high degree of adaptability and a demonstrated support for innovation; Two characteristics of company culture necessary for this effort. After assessing the potential sources of resistance to change, it would seem the employees currently responsible for managing customer information may have an initial reluctance to this change in conducting business. According to Robbins and Judge (2011), Fear of the unknown—Change substitutes ambiguity and uncertainty for the unknown ("Resistance to Change"). People will have their feelings of safety threatened by this change because of their high need for security. Two organizational sources of resistance are limited focus of change and threat to expertise (Organizational Behavior, 2011). What happens in limited focus of change is that the system that will manage the customer data may be dependent on several smaller systems (Organizational Behavior, 2011)....
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