Organizations presently recognize the need to initiate change within their operations. Increased competitiveness has played a significant role in this process. Human beings are more reluctant to embrace change within their systems. It is notable that most people believe in the maintenance of the status quo. As a result, they resist change and are more likely to be rebellious. However, effective leadership has the capacity to successfully initiate a change process (Buono & Jamieson, 2010). Change is encouraged within organizations due to several reasons. For instance, an organization might decide to integrate high technological applications in its processes. Others might also adopt strategic management approaches for enhanced performance. Most organizational changes cause potential benefits. This paper discusses the process of initiating change within an organization. The MacDonald’s corporation is selected as the organization where the change process is to be initiated.
MacDonald’s is an international corporation dealing in the retail of foodstuffs. With its headquarters located in the United States, the company enjoys a large pool of global consumers. The need for internal change for the corporation is largely eminent. This is due to the increased competitiveness and enhanced technological applications. The corporation requires a complete overhaul in its operations, organizational culture, and mission. The successful initiation of change within this corporation would require more than change management strategies. Since it is a global organization, the change agent must incorporate a combination of diverse approaches. The most basic and foremost initiative to undertake in this change process is communication on the need for change (Carter, 2008).
All stakeholders must be informed of the need to change the various operations within the organization. During this process, the benefits and disadvantages of the intended change must be well communicated. MacDonald’s corporation is a global organization. Therefore, the communication approach applied in the justification of the need for change must be robust and reliable. This is to ensure that all stakeholders within foreign branches get the information appropriately. Generally, the full engagement of all stakeholders and employees is necessary (Kirst-Ashman & Hull, 2012). This is because they will feel like part of the change process. Consequently, there is evident collective ownership of the intended change process. This reduces instances of resistance and rebellion. In order to effectively initiate change within MacDonald’s, the agents must learn to practice patience and concentration. It is important to recognize that innovative policies and practices may be executed and accepted over time.
The relevant managers and leaders within MacDonald’s will initiate a call for action. Basically, this means that they have to communicate and convince other people of the need for change. In this process, they must also indicate the specific areas in the corporation where change is highly appropriate. The establishment of a rational consensus will mark the next step in initiating change. All stakeholders must have a conviction on the appropriateness of the proposed change (Todnem & Macleod, 2009). In this stage, there must be a full engagement of all personalities within MacDonald’s. This must be regardless of one’s leadership cadre in the organization. Most change processes are more likely to affect external lives and systems. Therefore, other external stakeholders such as the consumers of MacDonald’s food products must be engaged. Particularly, this must occur during the consultation and opinion review stages.
All perceptions must be taken into consideration and used to harness the management’s initial plan for the change process (Carter, 2008). Generally, the management or the change agents within MacDonald’s corporation must view the entire system as a community. Adequate organization is the third step in initiating MacDonald’s change. The processes here are most integral and specific. There is a detailed presentation and outline of the areas of change. Moreover, a plan about how the transformation is to occur must be drawn. There are also indications of the persons who will have responsibility for specific tasks associated with change (Todnem & Macleod, 2009). Since MacDonald’s is an international corporation with a wide customer base, there are critical issues to be factored in. For instance, the change agents must clearly outline and communicate the methodologies that will be applied in monitoring the change process.
Monitoring and evaluation of the change processes are very crucial (Todnem & Macleod, 2009). This is because it provides critical information to all stakeholders on the level of success, relevance, and extent of the change process. Apart from these, the process is also vital because it increases the level of organizational accountability. This must also be applicable in MacDonald’s corporation. Change agents must also establish a solid plan for initiating the change process within the entire organization. Among some of the important factors to be considered include the number of departments and the general population. Notification of the disparities that exist in terms of differential opinions about the change process must be done. Therefore, understanding the organizational politics within the MacDonald’s is critical. Actualization of the intended and planned changes is a crucial stage of the change process within an organization. The need for setting up an effective communication and feedback system within MacDonald’s corporation is evident. All branch managers of the corporation must be involved as the first lead or model change agents.
Generally, an appropriate leadership structure and approach is able to peacefully initiate change within an organization (Buono & Jamieson, 2010). The MacDonald’s corporation management must recognize and adopt a transformational leadership approach. This will enable the company stakeholders to appreciate and embrace change with minimal resistance. The establishment of the steering committee to oversee the change processes is crucial. In this committee, there must be a balanced representation of all members and stakeholders of MacDonald’s corporation. Even the line managers and subordinate staff must have their representatives within such steering committees. This is because change is inclusive and affects all the stakeholders of a given entity (Todnem & Macleod, 2009). The committee shall be responsible for the delegation of responsibilities and monitoring of the change process within the entire corporation.
The monitoring aspect is crucial to ensure that the change processes follow the right path. It is also important to conduct an evaluative survey amongst all stakeholders of MacDonald’s corporation. This survey should be focused on determining whether the initiated change is appropriate. Any complaints emanating from the employees, the management, or other relevant stakeholders must be adequately addressed. Maintaining the change is an important initiative in the change process (Carter, 2008). This is because it enables the stakeholders, including the employees to adopt and sustain a positive culture. Indicatively, MacDonald’s corporation has the financial capacity to enhance the sustainability of the change process. Particularly, this is relevant if the change initiated involves financial implications. However, the steering committee responsible for overseeing the change process must also present an adequate and realistic budget for the process.
To ensure complete accountability, the management of MacDonald’s corporation might outsource the services of external evaluators and financial auditors. In order to avoid the possibility of failed projects, the corporation might advise the committee to adopt long-term financing. This initiative may help in enhancing the sustainability of the process (Todnem & Macleod, 2009). Over the long term, a positive culture and acceptance of the change are established even amongst the resisting groups. Ideally, this is the nature of humankind. An important consideration in drafting the change schedule or plan is the required technical skills and knowledge for initiating the change process. The ability of recipients to accept and be able to implement the elements of change must also be assessed.
The management has to research the most appropriate model for initiating change within its operations. The engagement of external consultants or experts is sometimes appropriate (Portman, 2009). In addition, the training of various affected persons and stakeholders within the organization is usually important. This is because individuals must have adequate preparation to accept and know the importance of any change process.
Conclusively, organizations and stakeholders must know that change is inevitable. The present impacts of globalization require organizations to adopt more robust and comprehensive change management strategies. Basically, this is important in order for them to remain competitive and establish adequate performance standards. A participatory approach is always recommended for any change process to be effective and successful. Strategic management also enhances the success of change processes within organizations.
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Carter, E. (2008). Expanding the traditional change management model to incorporate strategy, skills, and structures can increase your success. Web.
Kirst-Ashman, K. K., & Hull, G. H. (2012). Generalist practice with organizations and communities. Belmont, CA: Brooks/Cole Cengage Learning.
Portman, H. (2009). Prince2 in practice: A practical approach to create project managment documents: how to avoid bulky, inaccessible, standalone, and illegible documents. Zaltbommel: Van Haren Pub.
Todnem, R., & Macleod, C. (2009). Managing organizational change in public services: International issues, challenges and cases. London: Routledge.