THE ROLE OF LEADER AS A CHANGE AGENT 2 Organizations face numerous changes in their work environments. There is a need for individuals who are capable of turning strategy into reality. This requirement is why change agents are key elements in an organization’s business strategy. Generally speaking, the most important contributions to be made by the change agent are those that sustain the organization’s present-day performance and guarantee its future performance by enabling people to work effectively as they plan, implement and practice change. Successful change agents have the ability to detect problems by understanding both the business drivers and the organization well enough to identify performance problems and analyze their impact on short and long term business results. They also build relationships with their customers by forming partnerships with joint responsibility for the outcomes of the change effort. They ensure that the organization’s vision is expressed by understanding the expectations and motivations of the workforce through the visionary statement. They set leadership agendas by defining the continuing role of leaders, such as communication, role modeling and reinforcement of preferred behaviors. They are able to solve problems by recommending solutions. Solutions to problems do not come easy and the change agent must possess the comprehension to identify the problem, the consideration to see its importance to those involved, the courage to take honest and often difficult measures to resolve it and the authority to be heard. Lastly, they must be able to implement plans to achieve change goals. Successful organizational change on any noteworthy scale can be accredited to the right strategy and appropriate change in organization culture. Culture change, in return, depends on
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