Leadership, Change Management, And People Management: A Case Study On SweDigi
People management related issues that are related to difficulties in the organization
The leadership style and people management related abilities of the leaders are important in the different organizations, irrespective of the sector to which it belongs. The leaders are the main part of the entire management related processes of the company. The case study which is related to this report is based on the case study of Jan who has been appointed as the CEO of the SweDigi which is manufacturing organization in the South of Sweden. The company has an employee base of 543 employees. The organization was owner managed at the beginning of its operations and has been further sold to a group which operates seven other similar kind of companies (Cameron and Green 2015). The organization has been experiencing a decline in sales from the last three years which has further resulted in the reduction of staff for the purpose of cost-cutting of the organization. The board of the company had a discussion with the parent company regarding the issue that is being faced by the company. The management has thereby planned for the addition of new and improved products to the existing product line of the company (Van der Voet 2014).
Lewin’s Force Field Analysis has made a significant contribution to the theory related to change management in an organization. This is mainly based on the part of the strategic management process which ensures the ways by which the business provides responses to environment where it has its operations. Lewin’s Model describes the forces that drive change and those which restrain changes as well. The equilibrium between these two sets of forces does not allow changes in the organizations. The driving forces of change needs to greater than the restraining forces for the changes to occur in an effective manner. The internal forces of change that are present in SweDigi are the general sense of the management for the improvement of operations (Goleman 2017). The management also aims to further increase the profitability of the organization and improve its performance which has been deteriorating since few years. The competitiveness of the organization also needs to be increased and its efficiency can be improved with the introduction of new products in the product line. The structure if SweDigi needs to be changed to decrease the turnover of staff. The changes that have occurred in the external environment of operations of SweDigi are also important driving forces of change. The restraining forces of change in the organization are, the lack of proper infrastructure for the purpose of manufacturing the new products and the lack of expertise of the employees to work in the changing production processes (Bolden 2016). The lack of cooperation from the staff of the organization is also a major restraining force related to the implementation of changes.
Lewin’s Force Field Analysis
This model is to describe the transition that occurs in the organizations during the implementation of change related processes. The strength of this model mainly lies in the description of the transition process and not the actual change. Changes can take place in the organizations even if the members are not happy with it. On the other hand, transition takes place internally in the minds of people when they go through the entire change process. The speed of the occurrence of change is fast, whereas, the speed of the occurrence of transition is slow. The three types of transition that the employees go through during the change process are, ending, losing and letting go, being in the neutral zone and the new beginning (Worley and Mohrman 2014). The emotions that are experienced by the employees in the first stage are, fear denial, anger, sadness, disorientation, frustration, uncertainty, sense of loss. The emotions of the employees in the neutral zone are low productivity and low morale, resentment towards the initiatives of change, anxiety related to their role in the process. The emotions experienced by employees in the third stage are openness to learning, high energy and the renewed commitment to their role in the group. The employees of SweDigi who are in the first stage are the production manager and the marketing manager who have resigned from their jobs after the implementation of change (Cummings, Bridgman and Brown 2016). The employees who are still a part of SweDigi and not cooperating with the decisions and the processes that are undertaken by Jan are in the second stage of transition as they still not able to clearly understand their roles in the entire process of change. The management and the board on the other hand is in the third stage of the transition process as they are totally open to the changes that are being implemented in the organization (Holten and Brenner 2015).
The resistance that has been provided towards the changes by some of the employees of SweDigi have been major cause behind the failure of change implementation. The lack of proper infrastructure to implement the changes has acted a strong external force that has led to the let-down of the entire process of change that has been designed by Jan. The change implementation thereby did not have any positive effect on the sales and profitability of the organization.
Bridges Transition Model of change
The implementation of change is the most important step that will help in the launch of the new product by SweDigi. The leadership style followed for the implementation of change play an important in the success of change implementation in the organizations. The leader plays an important role in the implementation of change in the different organizational processes. The concept of change leadership is focussed on two major areas which include, the difference in the styles of leadership for different situations and the extent up to which the leaders are able to affect the employees of the organization (Kuipers et al. 2014). The organizations in the modern operating environment need a guru in every level of its operations in the industry. The effective leaders are able to change the styles of leadership that are followed by them in the different situations. The Hershey Blanchard’s Leadership model identifies four different styles of leadership based on the levels of maturity of the followers which are, directing, coaching, supporting and delegating. This concept of leadership is flexible in nature and affects all the parts of the organization. Jan needs to decide on the style of leadership which can enable him to succeed in the industry in an easier manner. Jan first needs to make the employees believe on the steps that are taken by him for the purpose of increasing the revenues of the company (Komives 2016). The lack of effective management has affected by the profitability and the revenues of the organization.
The change management model that can be applied by Jan in an effective manner is ADKAR change management model. This is a goal-oriented model of change management which can help Jan individuals towards a change that is about to take place in the organization. ADKAR is considered to be the acronym for the various steps involved in the process of change management which are, awareness, desire, knowledge, ability and reinforcement. This model further helps the individuals or the leaders to focus on the different activities that are related to the management of change. The clear goals and outcomes can be decided with the help of this model (Al-Haddad and Kotnour 2015). The goal of the implementation of change in SweDigi is related to the increase of revenues and profitability of the company as it was facing huge losses in the recent times.
The Burke-Litwin model of change can also be implemented by Jan to implement the organizational changes that are being planned for the company. This model mainly revolves around the definition and the establishment of the cause-and-effect based relationship between the 12 organizational dimensions which are key to the changes in the organizations. The 12 major dimensions of organization that are considered in the model are, external environment, the mission and the strategy of the organization, the leadership of the company, organizational culture, systems or policies of the company, structure of the organization, the climate of the work unit, the practices of the management, the needs and values of the individuals, the skills and tasks, the levels of motivation, the overall performance (Lam et al. 2018). Jan needs to take care and consider the dimensions of the organization and further formulate strategies which can help in the improvement of the revenues of SweDigi. The systems of the company will go through massive changes to enable the successful production of the different products. The structure of the company will also change as the different professionals have resigned from various and new recruitments will cause changes in the structure. The trust of the employees also needs to be gained by convincing them about the benefits of the different products that are being included to the existing range of products. The old habits followed by the employees need to changed so that they are able to adapt to the changes easily (McCleskey 2014).
Steps taken by Jan in the short term and medium term for the launch of the new product
McKinsey’s 7S framework can also be used by Jan for the purpose of implementing the changes related to the different processes. This framework can be implemented by the leaders in variety of situations which include, improvement of the performance of the companies, examining the effects of the future changes that will be made in the company, aligning the processes and the departments during an acquisition or merger and determining the best way to implement the strategies. This model can be applied to the teams or the organizations as a whole. The 7S of the framework mainly stand for, strategy, structure, systems, shared values, style, staff and skills (Sharif and Scandura 2014). Jan needs to integrate the theory based on this model within the organizational functions to achieve the goals that has been set by the management. The strategy that will be implemented according to this model is based on the introduction of new products. The structure of the organization will be modified according to the needs of the management to increase the trust of the employees. The members of SweDigi will be involved in the procedures and the daily activities going on in the company. The goals of the change implementation process will be decided based on the goals of the employees related to their personal development (Higgs and Dulewicz 2016). The leadership style that will be followed by Jan will also affect the behaviour of the employees. The staff will be trained for the successful execution of the various tasks related to the new product development. The skills of the employees need to be increased for the new production processes.
The change is needed in the organization as SweDigi is going through a tough phase and the revenues are declining on a continuous basis. The introduction of new products will be helpful to attract consumers and increase the revenues in the process. The communication process in the organization plays an important role related to the inclusion of the employees in the change process. The levels of communication shared among the employees and with the managers will be helpful for the leaders to gain the trust of the employees (Colbert, Barrick and Bradley 2014).
For example – Jan will first need to appoint new employees in the positions of the marketing manager and the production manager. The sales people will also be provided with appropriate training so that they are able to reach the customers easily. Jan as a leader can convince the management to bring some major changes in the structure and the resources of the organization so that the new products can be manufactured in an easier way. The increase in the product range will be helpful in increasing the revenues of SweDigi (Ngotngamwong 2018).
Goleman has uncovered six major styles of leadership after studying the various types of managers. The six styles of leadership and their usage in the organization are as follows,
- The pacesetting leader who expects and then models the excellence in the organizations. This style of leadership is described by the single phrase “Do as I do, now”. This leadership style works best when the team in the organization is skilled and motivated and the leaders demand quick results from the employees. This style is used in an extensive manner to overwhelm the members of the team and increase innovation in the organizational processes (Edwards et al. 2015).
- The authoritative leader mainly mobilizes the members of the team towards a common vision and further focusses on the goals. This leadership style can also be defined with the phrase “Come with me”. The authoritative style of leadership works when the members of the team require a new vision due to the changes that have taken place in the circumstances or the external environment. The entrepreneurial spirit of the members of the team is encouraged with the help of this leadership style (Kim and Mauborgne 2017).
- The affiliative style of leader mainly works for the purpose of creating the emotional bonds which bring the feeling based on belonging and bonding. This leadership style can be summed up with the phrase “People come first”. The affiliative style of leadership works when stress situation occurs in the organizations and the members of the team need to overcome the trauma. The leaders following this style can rebuild the trust of the employees (Groves 2015).
- The coaching leader is known for developing the employees or the members of the organization for their future. The phrase that can describe this leadership style is “Try this”. The leaders who follow this style of leadership are able to build the strengths of the employees. This style is not effective when the employees are not willing to change (Fris and Lazaridou 2017).
- The coercive leaders are those who demand immediate compliance from the employees. This style can be summed up by the phrase “Do what I tell you”. This style of leadership is effective when the company is in the takeover stage or any emergency occurs. This style is also helpful in controlling the teammates who are creating issues in the organization.
- The democratic leaders try to gather the consent of the employees or the members of the team with the help of participation in their jobs. This style of leadership is effective when the leader requires the team to participate in the process or change that is being implemented in the company. This style of leadership is not suitable for an emergency situation when time taken for the decision is quite high (Pulakos et al. 2015).
The style of leadership which is suitable for the functional areas of SweDigi is the authoritative style where the members of the organization will be provided with a new vision so that its revenues can be increased. The entrepreneurial spirit of the employees will be increased and new products will be introduced in the product line of the company. The democratic leadership will be further followed by Jan while recruiting new employees in the positions of the marketing manager and production manager of SweDigi. Jan will work collaboratively with the managers of the organization to improve the operations of SweDigi so that the new product can be manufactured with the help of the infrastructure that is present in the company (Agote, Aramburu and Lines 2016). Jan can further convince the board to bring some changes to the production plant and train the employees and sales people so that the new products can reach the consumers.
The democratic style of leadership will help the leader to empower the other employees in the organization and motivate them to work for the achievement of the goals of SweDigi.
The decisions that can be taken by the board of the organization is related to support Jan in the improvement of the revenues of SweDigi are related to providing the perfect infrastructure for the manufacture of new products. The team of the management of the organization needs to be reorganised so that the goals can be achieved easily. The board further needs to take decisions regarding the recruitment process of the organization. The managers need to be recruited at the different required positions of the company. The entire organization needs to be restructured according to the needs and demands of the prevailing situation (Li et al. 2016). For example – the changes that were made in the organizational structure of Microsoft under the leadership of Satya Nadella which had been helpful for increasing the profitability of the company in the technology industry. The changes were made in the organization to keep pace with the advancement of the technologies and the ways by which organizations operate. The changes were significant for the improvement in the operations of Microsoft to fulfil the needs of the consumers.
The quality of operations after change implementation can be checked by the company with the help of quality managers. The improved quality will be helpful in the fast achievement of the goals of SweDigi. Jan can also formulate policies for providing incentives to the employees who are able to perform their duties and achieve the goals in an effective manner (Burnes, Hughes and By 2016).
The report can be concluded by stating that SweDigi will be able to increase its profitability in the market with the help of the introduction of new products in the existing product line. This will further be helpful for increasing the profitability of the organization in the market in an effective manner. Jan however needs to take the required steps for the purpose of achieving the goals of improving the product line and increasing the revenues of SweDigi. The changes need to be implemented in the different processes and the structure of the organization so that the product can be manufactured and added to the product line within the shortest periods of time. The support of the board and the employees of the organization is important for the successful implementation of change.
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