Change is usually met by a lot of resistance since most people despise it. This resistance can be accounted for by previous disappointing experiences such as fear of the unknown and/or lack of trusting relationships. When employees do not buy into the corporate culture of the organization, they are likely to oppose propositions for change. The top management of any organization needs to be honest on the actual situation and state clearly the duration and consequences of change to be able to handle resistance. Several strategies can be employed to diminish resistance. They include education, shared responsibility, facilitation, and recognition of the knowledge each party possesses. Cultivation of these enhances the likelihood of attaining organizational acceptance and psychometric integrity (Muchinsky, 2004).
In the field of organizational development (OD), there is a strong tradition of advocating for employee participation in the change process. Change interventions directed at many organizational levels are more likely to succeed than those that focus on a single level (Rafferty & Griffin, 2001).Similarly, the number of change activities involved are also likely to influence the success of change effort. The implementation process should be divided into phases, each of which carrys particular activities to ensure efficiency and success. The knowledge infrastructure within the organization should stimulate a good learning environment, teamwork, creativity and confidence (Rampersad, 2004).In essence, mutual-trust, respect and teamwork promotes a sense of belonging among employees making them more likely to support the change effort, enhancing its sustainability.
Differential power status in any organization influences the performance of any given organization. The culture of an organization has a major impact on how the human resource development (HRD) department is perceived in an organization. If employees perceive the HRD department as part of the business, they are more likely to cooperate and implement decisions. For organizational change to be successful there must be adjustments in the staff-related issues, including individual and group processes, and organizational culture.
Many change management concepts result in cosmetic unsustainable transformation rather than the desired durable change. Before change is implemented, there is a need to verify its suitability, to gain insight into the problems likely to be encountered during execution. To ensure sustainable organizational change and development, there needs to be clear guidelines and strategies to ensure continuous rather than episodic change. Top-down bottom-up communication is critical to the success of organizational change, as well as allowing the participation of employees. When employees feel part of the transition, they are more likely to be supportive of the change effort. Organizational Change and Development are vital concepts in the survival and good performance of any organization, and require an intimate and effective inter play among the structures, participants and processes pertaining to the organization.
By Shirley J. Caruso, M.A., Human Resource Development
Muchinsky, P. M. (2004). When the Psychometrics of Test Development Meets Organizational Realities: a Conceptual Framework for Organizational Change, Examples, and Recommendations Personnel Psychology, 57(1), 175+
Rampersad, H. K. (2004). Learning and unlearning in accordance with organizational change. Organization Development Journal, 22(4), 43+
Rafferty, A. E., & Griffin, M. A. (2001). Expanding organizational diagnosis by assessing the intensity of change activities. Organization Development Journal, 19(3),