When The Apple Falls from the Tree|
Change Management Report – Assignment 03|
Preparing for Change7
Planting the new seed8
Tending to the seedling10
Appendix A –Lewins Change Management Model17
From Ron Rosenbaum’s “Secrets of the Little Blue Box” (Rosenbaum, 1996) article describing the underground phreaker world, came the foundations of one of the most influential partnerships of modern time, that of Steve Jobs and Stephen Wozniak. Who in conjunction with Ronald Wayne sowed the seeds of technical knowhow to create the company which we now know as Apple Inc. Apple Inc. has evolved from a back yard operation which sold a $666.66 motherboard known as Apple I in 1976 to become the highest valued multinational conglomeration in the world with an annual revenue in excess of $108 Billion USD. From being the most admired company in the United States of America in 2008, Apple has had to deal with criticisms in recent times over the welfare of its contracted workers who threatened suicide (Reuters, 2012), whose actions are becoming increasingly nefarious (Chen, 2010) and environmental failings for their reliance on highly polluting coal to power their data centres (Goldenberg, 2012). Just like when a piece of fruit gets dropped, a bruise that begins to develop within its core slowly starts to tarnish its surface making it less attractive to the consumer. The leadership of Apple has been a rollercoaster ride of differing styles for its employees. From Steve Jobs who was famous for being scary (Khaney, 2011) to John Sculley who had to battle the tremendous scepticism among the engineers to be the right kind of leader with great self-confidence (Boulgarides & Cohen, 2001) and back to Steve Jobs again who infamously quoted “Isn’t it funny a ship that leaks from the top” (Khaney, 2011). In October 2011, Steve Jobs who noted he was the only person he knew who lost a quarter of a billion dollars in one year passed away following a long illness. Apple Inc. the company that polarised the tech savvy society of today must now embrace a change in leadership. With this change, strategies need to be developed that will refocus, re-motivate and re-engage with its employees who fear a future which is not being writing by Steve Jobs. If this fear is left unattended, just like a weed it will take over, impacting the productivity and morale of Apple Inc.
Preparing for Change
Darwin’s theory of evolutionary change cannot be measured by the naked eye and benefits nothing from preparation; however organisations that evolve, need to understand that change is part of the current environment in which they operate and to survive they need to prepare for, plan and effectively communicate change. The planned changed required by Apple Inc. is second order change, being multidimensional, multilevel, discontinuous, radical change involving reframing of assumptions about the organisation and the world in which it operates (Robbins, et al., 2001, p. 700). Taking Stock
Preparation for change requires an understanding of what makes up Apple Inc. What is valued by Apple Inc. needs to be quarantined to prevent collateral damage while issues around leadership change need to be qualified to facilitate the required attention. The direction taken by Apple Inc. to implement leadership change and subsequently improve its ethical charter will meet resistance from its employees for a number of reasons including changing goals, conflict of self-interest, uncertainty and a lack of understanding and trust. Communication by Apple Inc. with its stakeholders throughout the entire change process is fundamentally important however during the initial stage, communication of the roadmap chosen, its reasons for the journey and the...