Organizational change is a structured approach in an organization for ensuring that changes are smoothly and successfully implemented, and that the lasting benefits of change are achieved. In the modern business environment, organizations face rapid change like never before. Globalization and the constant innovation of technology result in a constantly evolving business environment. Recent phenomena such as social media and mobile adaptability have revolutionized business and the effect of this is an ever increasing need for change, and therefore change management. The growth in technology also has a secondary effect of increasing the availability and therefore accountability of knowledge. Easily accessible information has resulted in unprecedented scrutiny from stockholders and the media. Prying eyes and listening ears raise the stakes for failed business endeavors and increase the pressure on struggling executives. With the business environment experiencing so much change, organizations must then learn to become comfortable with change as well. Therefore, the ability to manage and adapt to organizational change is an essential ability required in the workplace today.
Due to the growth of technology, modern organizational change is largely motivated by exterior innovations rather than internal moves. When these developments occur, the organizations that adapt quickest create a competitive advantage for themselves, while the companies that refuse to change get left behind. This can result in drastic profit and/or market share losses.
Organizational change directly affects all departments from the entry level employee to senior management. With recent developments, such as social media marketing and smart phone applications, the entire company must learn how to handle these new changes to the organization. Whether it is the CMO determining how to incorporate social media, or the executive assistants representing themselves and their company responsibly online, change is occurring at an increasingly rapid pace.
When determining which of the latest techniques or innovations to adopt, there are four major factors to be considered.
- Levels, goals, and strategies,
- Measurement system,
- Sequence of steps,
- Implementation and organizational change,
Organizational change can have many faces. But regardless of the type, the critical aspect is a company’s ability to win the buy-in of their organization’s employees on the change. To effectively implement organizational change consists of a four-step process. First, recognizing the changes in the broader business environment. Second, developing the necessary adjustments for their company’s needs. Third, training their employees on the appropriate changes. And fourth, winning the support of the employees with the persuasiveness of the appropriate adjustments. This four-step process is change management in its essence, and organizational change in practice.