British Airways, pg. 239
2. What lessons emerge from each perspective and what recommendations would you draw from each in constructing your advice to BA management.
British Airways management did approach the large-scale change to its employees by implementing the swipe time cared through a change management process. According to the case study the employee unions were made aware of the change and had minimal conversations regarding how, when, and ramifications of its implementation. Nadler’s twelve action steps give organizations hugely useful tools for initiating, leading, and managing change for every aspect of the organization. There are three core elements that should have been used for the swipe care implementation that include Managing organizational power
Motivating the participation of the airline employees it would affect directly Managing the rollout and transition for the swipe cards
In the swipe card debacle with British Airways there was no recognition by the management team that participation in this rollout would be critical to the success. When change was not handling appropriately, the staff was able in twenty-four hours to cost the organization millions of dollars and hundreds of customers. Understanding the three core elements would have saved them money, employee retention and customers. Nadler also points out that the steps while all need to be taken through discovery are potentially done in a different order, based on the change situation (Akin, Dunford, Palmer, 2009). My recommendations to avoid this type of backlash in the future would be to follow Nadler’s twelve action steps. Getting support of key groups is the first step, and in this case, when you are dealing with different unions and union contracts the first step would be to speak with those union leaders. Present the unions the change that is coming, the vision of why it is needed and ask for a collaborative approach to roll out it to the organization. Union leaders in the second step become very important, as they will be needed to bring the proposed changes to the employees with a sense of understanding and able to answer questions for the changes relevance and impact. Steps 3 and 4 can be used to put transparency to the change and reassure staff that while change is different there will be benefit to them and the organization. Step five I would allow for town hall sessions in which employees are able to express their concerns for the change of the swipe cards. Step six would allow for pairing down the concerns in step five an allowing employees and union leaders to offer modifications to the change that would benefit everyone. Seven allows for the reward of participation and I would move this step to the end of the line. Once everyone has had due time to vet out the change and any potential ramifications, the understanding that dissatisfaction may be a result by some but is managed to an impact that is not as significant as British Airways saw with the wildcat strike. A clear understanding of the change will need to be put in writing and have employee managers properly trained prior to the roll out. Communication needs to be transparent and the implementation rollout should allow for time on training. Rolling out the swipe system over departments is a better-suggested step 10 to allow for any unforeseen issues and untested real scenarios to be vetted and corrected prior to a big bang roll out to all divisions. Step eleven calls for transition management, which will be crucial to this change allowing managers to have a leader to work with on the changes, difficulties, and resolutions. Step 12 allows for feedback, which should be on going for any company to allow for evolving improvements. Circling back to step 7 and rewards, if the company is willing to concede to an increase in salary this should be done following the implementation of major changes, in an effort to boost morale and show commitment to the...
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