Topic1- Organizations in Time of Change
Change is an inevitable part of any given organization. Firmscontinue to come up with new ways of engaging in business negatingthe need to change how they conduct operations. Despite change beinga continuous event in organizations, the full comprehension of theaspect has been difficult especially among scholars.
“The processes or sequences of events that unfold in thesechanges-such as transitions in individuals` jobs and careers, groupformation and development, and organizational innovation, growth,reorganization, and decline-have been very difficult to explain, letalone man-age.” (Van Der Ven p510).
Change in an organization can be illustrated concerning four primarytypes of theories. The theories namely, life-cycle, teleological,dialectal and evolutionary show why and how change occurs in anorganization. Firms have adopted the life-cycle model when it comesto change. For example, companies begin operations at the start-upbirth, grow steadily, and mature in business processes then laterdecline in growth or some witness closure. Irrespective of theapproach, change in organizations follows a particular channelnegating the need for each to prepare.
Changes in organizations have been witnessed in the recent timesthrough different perspectives. For example, technology hastransformed the manner in which firms execute their activities. Theintroduction of technology has seen companies adopt new methods ofoperations while abandoning the obsolete techniques of conductingbusiness. Organizations have adopted a change in a bid to improve theoverall manner in which operations are executed. The ultimateobjective of each firm in embracing change is to improve its overalloutput while minimizing the costs of production.
“Industrial firms combined human labor with big, expensivecapital equipment. To maximize the output of that costly machinery,factory owners reorganized the processes of production”.
It is crucial to acknowledge change as an integral aspect of theorganization. It is a process that is continuous as firms strive toimprove their day to day operations. Further, organizational changein recent times aims at meeting the individual business needs. Withthe increase in competition, it is crucial that individual firms comeup with ways to which they can adapt to the business environmentwhile gaining competitive advantage. The process of adaptation is dueto organizational change.
“Continuous change is said to be a fact of life fororganizations and their members. This emphasis on change is seen inmany aspects of organizations, including employment relations”.
It is essential that as the organization strives to bring change, theentire team must be prepared to adapt the new way in which activitiesare conducted (Santhidran, Sinnappan, Chandran, and Junbo Borromeop350). Firms that embrace change have the benefit of gaining acompetitive advantage over those that stick to old ways of conductingbusiness. The organization gains a lot of value from such initiatives(van den Heuvel, Machteld, et al)
A different aspect of organizational change regards how sustainable afirm can be after the adaptation of the new process. In recent times,organizations that gain a competitive advantage through change mustensure that they can sustain themselves through the entire process.The management, working in close association with the rest of theemployees must brace itself for challenges that arise as a result ofthe adoption of the change. Through the same, it would be possiblefor the firm to reap the benefits of the change especially if theirend goal was imminent. Stability in change should focus more on aholistic rather than a singular approach. In light of Kurt Lewin’ssentiments, the change should be overall. He states
“To be stable, a cultural change has to penetrate all aspects ofa nation’s life. The change must, in short, be a change in the‘cultural atmosphere,’ not merely a change of a single item”(Burnes, 49).
Burnes, Bernard. "Kurt Lewin and the planned approach to change:a re‐appraisal."Journal of Management studies 41.6 (2004): 977-1002.
Leana, Carrie R., and Bruce Barry. "Stability and change assimultaneous experiences in organizational life." Academy ofManagement Review 25.4 (2000): 753-759.
Santhidran, S., Chandran, V. G. R., & Borromeo, J. (2013).Enabling organizational change–leadership, commitment to change andthe mediating role of change readiness. Journal of businesseconomics and management, 14(2), 348-363.
Van de Ven, Andrew H., and Marshall Scott Poole. "Explainingdevelopment and change in organizations." Academy ofmanagement review 20.3 (1995): 510-540.
van den Heuvel, M., Demerouti, E., Bakker, A. B., & Schaufeli, W.B. (2013). Adapting to change: The value of change information andmeaning-making. Journal of Vocational Behavior, 83(1),11-21.
Topic2- Leadership and Change
Change and leadership are two elements that are inseparable. Changein an organization entails the introduction of new approaches toconducting operations with the goal of realizing particular goals.However, the ability to recognize the changes introduced in theorganization significantly depend on the kind of leadershipavailable. The leadership is essential in steering the entireorganization toward the achievement of the particular change. Theindividual type of change introduced in the organization should beaccompanied by the commensurate form of leadership essential for therealization of the identified objectives. The identified types ofchange include the incremental and strategic changes both of whichneed a particular kind of leadership for the achievement of itsgoals. The inability to enact the appropriate leadership style for agiven organizational change could jeopardize the achievement of thechange process. For example, incremental change can be managed by theexecutive form of leadership where the existing management structuresare employed to realize the change process. Similarly, strategicchange in an organization negates the need to adopt a different styleof leadership that would be instrumental in the achievement ofobjectives set in the firm. Of particular significance is the need toacknowledge that change, being a continuous process should bepreceded by effective leadership style.
“The first component of charismatic leadership is envisioning.”(Nadler and Tushman, 82). Because change is about adopting newstrategies for the betterment of the future of an organization,visionary leaders must be entrusted with the responsibility ofsteering the firm toward such goals.
Instrumental leadership is equally essential in enabling theorganization to achieve the changes in place. The benefit lies in itsability effectively to oversee the management of teams, managerialprocesses and structures (Nadler and Tushman, 85). Complementingchange with a particular leadership style is essential. Through theadoption of such an approach, it would be possible for theorganization to realize success arise out of the change managementprocess.
Strategic leadership is essential in enabling the particularorganization to achieve the change it desires to have. Firms mustcontinually instigate strategic changes for example in marketing tokeep pace with the increasing competition by other firms (West, Ford,and Essam). There are different viewpoints of strategic leadershipthat are instrumental in facilitating the ability of the organizationto achieve the change that has been instigated. They include thecollective, procession, dynamic and supra-organizational viewpoints.For example, strategic leadership from the collective viewpoint isessential in endowing every individual with the responsibility ofachieving the particular change (Denis, Langley, and Cazale, p5). Theprocessual viewpoint emphasizes on the actions people take to see toit that the change process is efficient. Leadership should extendbeyond those in a managerial position to individual measures taken bypersons in the organization to achieve the particular change. Focusshould not only be on those entrusted with the need to bring changeto their leadership position but the individual actions in theachievement of the goals caused by the change. The leadership incharge of steering the particular change must consider the existenceof institutional structures such as regulatory agencies. It iscritical that changes enacted in the organization are in line withthe established laws to avoid any chances of the firm sufferingsetbacks due to closure (Muzio, Brock, and Suddaby p705).
The concept of poetry is applicable when it comes to the idea ofleadership and change. Leaders have been mandated with the task ofsteering change in the organization. However, before establishingways of achieving the goals of change, it is critical that one comesup with a creative idea that will form the basis of the change.Miroslav Holub in his open, The Door, challenges leaders to beon the forefront in taking the challenge of steering change in theorganization. An excerpt of the poem states
Go and open thedoor.
Ifthere’s a fog
It could serve as a reminder of the fact that despite the unforeseenuncertainties, it is critical that leaders take the initiative tospearhead change in the organization. Emphasis is on having someonelead the way towards an uncertain future. Further, as a leader, onehas the responsibility of steering the rest of the team to achievegoals that would be brought about by the change. Holub states
Go and open thedoor.
Maybe adog’s rummaging.
Maybeyou’ll see a face,
Bass, Bernard M. "From transactional to transformationalleadership: Learning to share the vision." Leadership:Understanding the dynamics of power and influence in organizations(1997): 318-333.
Denis, Jean-Louis, Lise Lamothe, and Ann Langley. "The dynamicsof collective leadership and strategic change in pluralisticorganizations." Academy of Management journal 44.4(2001): 809-837.
Holub, Miroslav. The door. Scholastic, 1999.
Muzio, Daniel,David M. Brock, and Roy Suddaby. "Professions and institutional
change: towardsan institutionalist sociology of the professions." Journal of
ManagementStudies 50.5 (2013): 699-721.
Nadler, David A., and Michael L. Tushman. "Beyond thecharismatic leader: Leadership and organizational change."California management review 32.2 (1990): 77-97.
West, Douglas,John Ford, and Essam Ibrahim. Strategic marketing: creatingcompetitive
advantage. Oxford University Press, 2015.
Topic3- Sharing Economy and Collaborative Consumption
Sharing economy entails the economic and social activities thatinvolve the online transactions. Collaborative consumption, on theother hand, identifies the concept of provision and receipt ofvaluable resources and services through interaction with consumers orvia a mediator. However, with the development of informationtechnology, it has been possible to facilitate the exchange of goodsand services online as the web serves as the mediator. The sharingeconomy has risen in the recent past with impacts being felt byconsumers across the globe. Further, it breeds loyalty among thosewho engage in such transactions establishing room for futureinteractions (Yang, et al). The concept of “sharing economy andcollaborative consumption” has had an enormous impact when it comesto the utilization of goods and services that would otherwise beidle. Various online companies have been established that have helpedfacilitate the entire process of “sharing economy.” A typicalexample is Airnb that has enabled customers to get accommodationonline. Airnb has made it possible for individuals to make use oftheir under-utilized inventory at a cost.
“Much ado has recently been made of the “sharing economy,”in which broad segments of the population can collaboratively makeuse of under-utilized inventory via fee-based sharing.” (Zervas,Proserpio, and Byers, 2)
Sharing economy and collaborative consumption is a crucial businessactivity for the benefit that it confers both the service providersand the recipients. The ability to adopt such a trend in businessenables people to create a good rapport with each, a trend thatestablishes a ground for further business activities.
“Clearly, there exist beneficial transactions enabled throughthe sharing economy that has no negative externalities, benefit bothtransacting parties, and thus provide positive utility. Such atransaction manifests itself as a net gain in social welfare.”
Airnb that exists as an organization that facilitates such kind ofbusiness activities has been useful in connecting individuals fromdiverse cultural backgrounds. Despite the benefits that have beenpresented with the concept of shared economy, there are adverseeffects linked with the same. Racial discrimination has been pointedout as one of the negative consequences that have arisen courtesy ofsharing economy and collaborative consumption. Airnb that providesthe online platform through which the business transactions areexecuted is a culprit when it comes to the issue of racialdiscrimination according to a survey conducted.
“Overall, we find widespread discrimination againstAfrican-American guests. Specifically, African-American guestsreceived a positive response roughly 42% of the time, compared toroughly 50% for White guests”. (Edelman, Luca, and Svirsky, 2).
Despite the adverse issues that have arisen due to sharing economyand collaborative consumption, it is vital to encourage its adoptionfor business activities. The online platform is essential since iteases the manner in which business is executed. People benefit fromthe fact that they can access services that would not otherwise beavailable since no one knows about their existence. Because of thesame, it is mandatory that individuals embrace the idea of sharingeconomy and collaborative consumption to access services and goodsthat they need. The technological advancements have been instrumentalin improving business transactions through the concept of sharedtechnologies (Lee et al.)
However, as people transact through the Internet, it is critical thatthey exercise caution because of the security threats associated withengaging in online business activities. Transactions should beconducted through legitimate channels and organizations such asAirnb, eBay, and Amazon. Such firms have established themselves asreliable brands when it comes to execution of business activities.
Edelman, Benjamin G., Michael Luca, and Dan Svirsky. "RacialDiscrimination in the Sharing Economy: Evidence from a FieldExperiment." Harvard Business School NOM Unit Working Paper16-069 (2015).
Hamari, Juho, Mimmi Sjöklint, and Antti Ukkonen. "The sharingeconomy: Why people participate in collaborative consumption."Journal of the Association for Information Science and Technology(2015).
Lee, Zach WY, et al. "TECHNOLOGY-MEDIATED SHARING ECONOMY:UNDERSTANDING USER PARTICIPATION IN COLLABORATIVE CONSUMPTION THROUGHTHE BENEFITCOST PERSPECTIVE." Proceedings of the 20th PacificAsia Conference on Information Systems (PACIS). 2016.
Yang, Shuai, et al. "Why are Customers Loyal in Sharing-EconomyServices? A Relational Benefits Perspective." A RelationalBenefits Perspective (June 1, 2016) (2016).
Zervas, Georgios, Davide Proserpio, and John Byers. "The rise ofthe sharing economy: Estimating the impact of Airbnb on the hotelindustry." Boston U. School of Management Research Paper2013-16 (2016).