Organizational Change and Development


Change is an endless process in any form of setting. For organisations, change is the difference in quality, form, management, or leadership structure in the respective units (Aras and Crowther 2008, p. 444). The choice of model to apply for an effective change in an organisation can be influenced by the structure of leadership and governance, size of an organisation or the basis for initiating change. Most often, change is initiated to scale up an organisation’s performance to higher notch or uphold an already diminishing organisation.

However, process of change can lead to either a positive or a negative effect to an organisation. Undeserved outcome of change arise when an organisation does not use an ideal model of change. At times, models considered appropriate for the change too can give negative outcomes depending on the challenges the organisation face in implementing the change strategy. This can arise from breakdowns in the process of implementing change for an establishment (Borland, 2009 p. 556).

Leadership and Governance

Since the main challenge in introducing a change to an organisation lies on its ability to create a governance structure committed to the success of the change. The primary concern for success of organisational change lies with the ability to opt for change initiative that is allied to the leadership and governance pattern available in the organisation at the particular time of initiating change. Similarly, successful change in an organisation must understand how to interrelate amongst various components of organisation that includes governance and methodology of executing change (Leavy and McKiernan 2009, p. 173).

This has forced various management teams in organisations to address an inclusive governance structures before and during change implementation cycle. Whereas a standardised governance structure that works perfectly under any circumstance does not exist, every organisation should consider some common factors in establish their governance structures.

Both Scholars and management experts alike collectively agree that change cycle starts at the setting up new ideas. Even though the ideas could be introduced at any level within an organisation for a successful implementation of change, it is essential to utilise structures that can effectively be integrated in the existing governance structure. Dunphy, Griffiths, and Benn (2007) point out that the greatest challenge for most organisations in the changing cycle is the way to design a governance structure that can persistently focus on the objective initiating change.

This should entail accepting and advocating for the new ideas consistently, supporting and leading co-workers throughout the implementation process to ensure that the organisation achieves its core goals of initiating change. Indeed Graetz and Smith (2010, p. 137) clearly state that for a successful change management in an organisation the board ought to stipulate the process of making decision and the strategy for its implementation.

For a successful and sustainable change in an organisation, the leadership entitled to initiate and implement the change should slip in all the significant elements of success. This should start right at the initial stage of implementation and goes all throughout the change cycle to the final stage of implementation. Noting that the structure of organisations overwhelmingly affects the way information flows through an organisation. This influences both the allocation of resources to various sections of an organisation and decision-making for an organisation. Additionally, structure of an organisation depicts behaviours of such organisations. Therefore, for sustainability of the change, the involved leadership should consider both the internal and external critiques and improve where necessary (Smith and Rayment 2010, p. 62).

Dialectic Change Model

To address sustainable leadership and governance for a changing organisation, management experts assert that models of change are critical parts of the agenda. This has resulted in launch of various process models of organisational transformation and progress. In relation to leadership and governance, it is crucial to understand dialectic model of change for success of an organisation. Dialectic process clarifies on the solidity and change in relation to balancing of powers amongst different opposing entities. For change to succeed in an organisation where other members are committed to retain the status quo, the challengers must overpower the opposing force of change.

Irrespective of their positions, those entitled to initiate change for an organisation must pursue that cause to the last part for the benefit of the organisation. In case a conflict arises, a solution has to be arrived at as soon as it arises to enhance a smooth transmission of change. Aras and Crowther (2008, p. 446) indicate that in a dialectical change model, conflict is imperative in its success. This is because open argument and solving of problems are more likely to kick-off debate for the opposing sides. These in turn ease resolution of differences and conflicts in the organisation. Such conflicts call for rational leadership to ensure prosperity for an organisation.

Smith and Rayment (2010, p. 63) assert that good leaders explicitly discuss with all the members of their staff the decisions for bringing the change other that imposing the change on them. This entails assigning of work to the staff with expertise skills, instead of imposing default or convenience means in assigning the change models. However, scholars indicate that whereas a collaborative conflict culture can cultivate adaptation to change on one hand, there is an emphasis on dynamic listening to one another’s suggestion while seeking for a neutral solution to the problem.

On the other hand, organisations with avoidance conflict cultures do not easily adapt to the changes as required. This model lacks an open discussion and discourages information sharing in organisation (Graetz and Smith 2010, p. 131). This hinders an efficient resolution to conflicts, thus causing lack of a combined change process. For an effective change, it is the sole responsibility of leaders and the bodies governing an organisation to encourage a collaborative conflict culture, as they eliminate avoidance conflict culture (Benn and Baker 2009, p. 388). Besides, change models that lay emphasis on the role of leaders and governance provide an optimistic and expectant likelihood for change.

Approaches to Organisational Change

An organisation is made up of five interacting variables. These interacting variables are structure of the organisation, power, technology, people, and task in a group (Atwood and Mora 2010, p. 587). Since they are all interdependent, a change in any of the variables will most likely result in a change in other variables. While intending to accomplish a change for the benefit of an organisation, the change agents usually modify more than just one of the variables.

This results into a variety of approaches in implementing an effective change. These change approaches are interconnected and multi-dimensional. They can be used either at the process of change or at the closing stages. The complexity in choosing a change approach makes leadership and governance a vital part in enacting a successful change in an organisation.

Structural Variable Approach

Introducing change in the structural variability aims to alter the methods of arranging task within an organisation. It includes changing technology and people variables in a way that gives an utmost performance in an organisation. In addition, changes in structural variables involve enacting changes in models of communication, review, and assessment procedures, as well as the ultimate interaction between members of an organisation and the management.

At the same time, it might involve decentralisation or centralisation of governance, alteration of governance systems, or changing position definition to motivate the individuals in order to accept the change. Therefore, in a number of cases, leadership and governance systems are the core for achieving an effective change in an organisation. This makes it difficult to effect a sudden change in leadership structures of an organisation (Graetz and Smith 2010, p. 139).

Chapman (2002 p. 17) indicates that the involvement of management in change process may help an organisation develop and manage its leadership effectively. However, for a successful implementation of change, the team spearheading change should take into consideration various issues. Rashid, Samasivan and Rahman (2003, p. 165) indeed affirms that the objectives of initiating change should be explained clearly to the leaders whom will in turn pass this information to their juniors.

In this case, the success of change in these organisations relies completely on the leadership and the governance structures. Similarly, to avoid premature concerns on the probable success of implementation process of change in an organisation, it is necessary for the management to involve the entire workforce in the implementation process (Atwood and Mora 2010). However, a successful implementation of change programs relies on the management team. This includes the choice of strategy for governance and leadership structure that the organisation may prefer.

Leadership as a function of management helps an organisation to analyse and identify areas that lag behind. Scholars and governance experts alike acknowledge that appropriate leadership supports good governance strategies. As a result, the change initiators should analyse the possibility of success for the preferred change and the necessary steps for implementing the change before initiating it. This may include educating and enlightening the staff on the probable benefits of the change.

Besides, a good leadership structure will slot in individuals who can interact freely with all the staff to persuade them to take the change positively. Rashid et al., (2003, p. 168) indicate that it is difficult to get rid of organisational culture. Nonetheless, empirical evidence indicates that good governance and ideal leadership structure can help an organisation to introduce successfully the changes that can get rid of the organisation’s cultures.


Ideal leadership in combination with good governance promotes efficient management of organisations. Good governance in an organisation encourages transparency, thereby enhancing integrity of an organisation. Consequently, an organisation’s staff members build up trust in their leaders. Since the staff members and the public trust the organisation, it is easy for the organisation to initiate change both within its system, with the external partners and other stakeholders of the firm. Therefore, a strong leadership combined with good governance is supreme for an organisation that intends to perfectly initiate and implement changes in its system.


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