Course Name and Number
Critical Reflection on a Change Process
One recent change process which I had the responsibility of implementing is customer feedback technology. The implementation of this technology-focused on integrating mechanisms of customer feedback aimed at improving customer satisfaction. This customer feedback system is the NPS system configured to centralize customer feedback in a structured manner, especially depending on the client activity in different processes (Marshall,2019). Periodically it would include the distribution of surveys to collect information of critical touchpoints of the business. This would include open questions concerning how to improve the service. The service would also focus on monitoring scores and aim to ensure personal improvement by increasing the number of loyal customers. As a leader of this organization, I realized increased resistance to implementing this change by the members of the organization, namely the senior management and the staff.
I identified several reasons why the staff of the organization was resistant to the implementation of this change. Many of the employees feared that they would lose their jobs if this particular change were implemented. There was a huge concern that customer feedback would see many of them reported for perceived offenses that they have done, therefore putting their jobs in jeopardy (Marshall, 2019). Another reason why this particular change was resisted was the use of a bad communication strategy. The company’s management failed to effectively communicate the need for change to members of the organization and how this change would benefit them. Communication of this change is a critical factor in determining employees’ reactions, and I realize my failure as a leader to oversee proper communication of change to the employees (Ready & Mulally, 2017). The upper management failed to communicate early and effectively concerning the change and why this would be beneficial to the employees. Furthermore, there was a lot of miscommunication, which included the communication of insignificant or insensitive information. Another reason for the failed integration of this change in the organization is shock and fear of the unknown, and this was another reason why the employees resisted change in this scenario (Ready & Mulally, 2017). Many of the employees feared this particular change and panicked because they believed it would place their jobs in jeopardy. The employees felt the need to cling to the past, which they considered more secure. As a leader, I also realize that the implementation of this change came as a surprise to many of the employees, which gave them a sense of fear.
Another reason for the rejection of this change is loss of control, and this is because the employees are used to familiar routines, and therefore found this change implementation to be a scary process. There was a feeling of powerlessness and confusion, and the employees did not understand why this change was necessary. The employees also resisted this particular change process because many realized their lack of competence in work-related practices. Therefore, the implementation of change would necessitate them to improve their work productivity (Ready & Mulally, 2017). Employees resist change when they are hesitant to try out new work routines, and they would therefore express their hesitance to try out something new. Employees will usually feel resistant to change when they feel that this will impact their day-to-day routine activities. Another reason employees may be resistant to change poor timing is that many individuals may find the timing of the change to be hassling to them. For any aspect of organizational change to be effective, it is crucial to initiate proper timing, which the organization failed to consider. The employees resisted this change because of the feeling of a loss of support system. Employees who are in their comfort zones will usually work under a large amount of predictability, and this is because all that they do is within a predictable aspect (Zainol,2021). The change process shook the confidence of the employees’ support system, and it was challenging to them because the entire process was unfamiliar. Collectively, all these factors led to a resistance to change, and they made the process of implementing change to be more difficult.
Recommendations on Lessons Learned for Future Change
Based on this experience as an organization, several recommendations can be implemented by a leader in implementing change. The successful implementation of change will include the use of new approaches to leadership to ensure successful outcomes in change processes (Ready & Mulally, 2017). For change management to be effectively implemented in the organizational setting, defining the change and why it will be necessary is necessary. In this scenario, as a leader, I would have to find effective methods of defining the implementation of change in the organization and why it would be necessary. This would involve implementing effective strategies of communicating what the change is and why it would be necessary for the organization (Zainol, 2021). The leadership could explain to the workers that the implementation of the customer feedback technology would help better recognize the customers and their preferences, therefore improving work-related operations. After defining the change, it would be necessary to align this to the business strategy of the organization, therefore, leading to better overall outcomes. It is also vital to determine the impacts of change and those affected by the particular change. This would include an assessment of how this change would impact different levels of the organization.
Each of the business units has to be assessed to understand how the change will impact the operations of these units. This information will be important in developing training and support strategies for all the employees (Marshall, 2019). Change management can be effectively realized by the organization’s leadership with the development of a communication strategy for the employees. The leadership needs to determine the most effective communication methods to the employees (Wellington, 2017). They will, therefore, be able to use the appropriate mechanisms for adjustment and use the proper technical skills needed to implement change. The leadership can also institute a mentorship program or open-door policy for the effective implementation of change. For effective implementation of change, the organizational leader needs to be more sensitive to the employees. It is vital to ensure that the employees are assured that their jobs are safe, and they will also be included in the change processes at all levels and stages.
Review of Relevant Leadership Theories
The use of leadership theories can play an essential role in implementing change and can also assist the organizational leader in achieving objectives at the organizational level. Leadership theories assist in creating an understanding of why people are elected as leaders and what makes the leader a unique and effective individual (Wellington,2017). One theory of leadership relevant to this situation is the contingency theory, and this focuses on aspects that help ensure the effectiveness of leadership, which is best suited for the particular situation. It is based on the principle that no single style of leadership applies to all situations. It stresses that the best way of leading is to balance different behaviors, needs, and contexts. In this scenario, as a leader, it would be necessary to empathize with the staff and understand why they would be resistant to change (Pavlopoulos,2020). The leader would need to address the employees’ fears and assure them that the implementation of change would not affect them negatively. Using the contingency theory, the leader needs to examine particular situations and determine which leadership style would be most effective in such a scenario. Furthermore, different factors may impact the leader’s effectiveness, such as the management style, company policies, employee work styles, and employee morale.
Implementation of the contingency leadership theory would focus on the use of the Fielder Model. It reveals that two factors would contribute to situational favourableness. These include the leadership style and situational favorableness. Another leadership theory that would be helpful in this scenario is the situational theory, which proposes that no one leadership style supersedes the other (Hussain et al.,2018). It ascertains that leaders need to ensure that they lead in the right way by using different distinguishing aspects such as the specification of tasks and the character of the followers. The application of leader theories will play an essential role in effective change management in this scenario (Pavlopoulos,2020). Application of leadership theories would include being more inclusive, and it is essential to focus on the needs of the followers. The inclusive leader would constantly involve other people in leadership, especially by welcoming feedback and delegating more responsibilities to others. Effective implementation of change in this scenario will need a better approach to leadership based on understanding the needs of the employees and ensuring that they are included in change management processes.
Hussain, S. T., Lei, S., Akram, T., Haider, M. J., Hussain, S. H., & Ali, M. (2018). Kurt Lewin’s change model: A critical review of the role of leadership and employee involvement in organizational change. Journal of Innovation & Knowledge, 3(3), 123-127.
Marshall, S. (2019). Leading and managing strategic change. In Strategic leadership of change in higher education (pp. 22-34). Routledge.
Pavlopoulos, E. (2020). How to make a difference as a middle leader. Management in Education, 0892020620973038.
Ready, D. A., & Mulally, A. (2017). How to become a game-changing leader. MIT Sloan Management Review, 59(1), 63.
Wellington, P. (2017). Effective People Management: Your Guide to Boosting Performance, Managing Conflict and Becoming a Great Leader in Your Start Up. Kogan Page Publishers.
Zainol, N. U., Kowang, T. O., Hee, O. C., Fei, G. C., & Kadir, B. B. (2021). Managing Organizational Change through Effective Leadership: A Review from Literature.
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