Managing change in organizations by C A Carnall

By C A Carnall

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Tichy and Sherman (1995) again: By mid-1992, over 200,000 GEers – well over two thirds of the workforce – had experienced work-out. On any given day, perhaps 20,000 are participating in a related program. Instead of pursuing pragmatic goals the company focused on process, process and continuous improvement, customer satisfaction and partnerships. As these authors put it, refocus from hardware to software; from seeing people and organizational development as needing to move from developing awareness of new possibilities via the development of new skills toward the development of new ‘rules of the 43 978ch03 22/10/02 11:04 AM Page 44 Chapter 3 ■ The strategic management of breakthrough change game’, new ways of thinking about the business model.

Eventually we discovered that these economies of scale were often illusory. Some of the ‘costs’ of scale were increasingly alienated and demotivated employees but, in particular, inflexible and inwardly focused organizations. Observers concerned with these problems noted two linked points: 1. What appeared to be a growing alienation of many within modern society coalesced around attitudes to bureaucracy – whether public or private. Organizations which could give genuine priority to delivering value to customers would begin to break down the alienation many felt about these large bureaucracies.

Eventually he said, ‘Well I had hoped that we could develop a co-operative approach and engage in a free and frank discussion’. ’ There is little doubt in my mind that the criticism had placed him on the defensive, automatically. Whilst he recognized that he sought an open relationship he felt drawn to defend the number of days ascribed to ‘management and planning’. More importantly he felt constrained from explaining that the reason for the high number of actual days was that there had been so many problems during the previous year (in which the organization, and, therefore, the finance function, had been founded) that he and other senior colleagues had been forced to spend time on site problem solving in order to get things done.

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