Reference no: EM13759629
PREPARATION AND PLANNING
Senior management realized that, for the long-term survival and prosperity of the company, it would be necessary to have empowered workers who were capable of, and responsible for, making their own decisions. They also felt that some type of team environment would be desirable.
Knowing that effective change requires leadership with knowledge and experience in change management, they brought in external consultants with experience in designing and managing large-scale change events for organizations outside the paper industry. A Planning Team was created, which included management representatives, and internal and external consultants.
This Planning Team, in turn, created a Design Team where a representative sample of the entire organization would be involved in designing the organization development intervention meeting itself. This Design Team met several times before the event. It had representation vertically among all levels of the management and workers, and also had horizontal representation across the entire organization. They produced a plan for a meeting that was highly-adaptive and tailored specifically to fit their needs, their wants, and their situation. They did not use any one specific model or consultant's approach. The team created a list of specific outcomes that they wanted from the process, and circulated it for comment throughout the organization.
They created a highly structured design for a future off-site meeting of the entire organization. This was centered on the use of modern adult learning techniques with an emphasis on involvement and interaction -- not on information and visions presented from the top.
The Design Team created detailed written instructions and worksheets, and appointed a Logistics Team to work out and manage the details for the change event.
It took almost a year from the initial decision to begin the process until the actual change event occurred. But when it did, it was held off-site over a consecutive 3-day period. To allow everyone to participate, they shut down production for three days!
THE CHANGE CONFERENCE
All of the 800 people (just about everyone) were assigned to specific tables, with 8 people at each of 100 total tables in one large room! There was a "max-mix" seating arrangement, to ensure a maximum-mixing of people both vertically and horizontally throughout the company. Nobody sat with anyone in their own functional group or at their own level of management. Vice presidents were mixed right in with production people, engineers, secretaries, sales and marketing personnel.
FIRST DAY -- DISSATISFACTION, DIALOGUE, DISCOVERY, DATA
The day was spent developing a common database of the current reality. Views were presented by customers, management, representative workers throughout the corporation, and outside companies that had successfully completed this process in their own industry.
A process of structured listening was imposed. Working at their tables, the participants proceeded to learn about each other -- about their environments, constraints, daily work routines, pressures, problems, successes, values, and outside activities.
Participants were required to discuss what they heard, how they felt about it, and what meaning it had for their own situation. It was important for everyone to see the information generated by themselves and by everyone else in the organization.
The entire company heard from their leaders, from their customers, from organizations outside the industry that have had successes with this large-scale change process, and from themselves.
SECOND DAY -- VISION
This day was devoted to defining and moving towards a preferred future for the organization by finding common ground among the diverse participants. The Design Team presented a working draft of a vision statement as a starting point for discussion. This was then subjected to open criticism and revision.
Reality was brought in by having the participants work to analyze their strengths and weaknesses, as well as opportunities and threats. They then proceeded to a process of organizational diagnosis -- of identifying the problems that are impeding change and progress.
A discussion and clarification of the mission identified what business the company was in, and what business they should be in, considering their stakeholders' needs, their resources, and their competitive environment. This reinforced some existing operational practices, and suggested some new ones to be added and others to be eliminated.
The "max-mix" seating arrangement was then reconfigured to group people together by functional groups (i.e. engineering, management, technical, production, marketing.) These groups each prepared and sent messages to the other groups, covering what they appreciate about each other, and what they need from the others to help them to do their own jobs in a more productive way.
THIRD DAY -- ACTION PLANNING
If this is to be more than an informative exercise, the words must be converted into actions. The last day was devoted to setting strategy, gathering and processing feedback on this strategy, and especially on action planning to secure commitments to make the proposed strategy develop into reality.
Written commitments were made for the entire organization, for the functional groups, and by the individuals. A combination of individual, table-group, and plenary work was used to insure that the commitments were heard, relevant, and agreed on. These objectives were specific, measurable, realistic, and achievable.
Question 1: Design a suitable survey for staff to provide feedback on the success of Scenario One from Assessment One. Your survey should cover at least ten questions relating to the training session so that you can gain a good understanding of the staff members responses.
Question 2: If the results of your survey clearly showed that after three months the staff members were starting to get disillusioned with the changes to the organization, what would you suggest the management do to rectify this problem?
Question 3: How often should evaluation and monitoring take place to ensure that staff members are following the Organisational Development Plan?
Question 4: Do a Google Search and find information on external consultants who offer to assist companies with the development and maintenance of Organisational Development Plans. What would be the benefits of using such an external consultant?
Question 5: Do you believe it is important for a company to agree on a set of lasting values to drive it forward? Why or why not? If possible, give some example from your own experience.
Question 6: Read scenario two on the attached page and answer the following questions:
• What issues does Jake face with employees?
• Do you agree that Newcastle Computech needs to establish a shared set of values and a vision for the future of the business to take it to the next level? Why or why not?
• Develop a plan to help Jake build his mixed, merged semi-virtual team into a cohesive unit and build the type of culture it needs.
• What problems or challenges do you foresee Jake experiencing whilst doing this?
• What would be the benefits to the business in the long term?
• Describe the benefits of creating a ‘shared vision' and culture for individuals?
• How should this plan be monitored in the future?
Question 7: Why do you think it would be important for Jake's staff to hold regular team meetings? What benefits would the staff experience?
Questin 8: Why would it be important for Jake to provide ongoing support and resources to his staff?
Question 9: Undertake research and consider the two scenarios given (Assessments 1 and 2) and describe what would be the costs and benefits (including future opportunity costs) of evaluating the organisation plan. Do you think this cost is worthwhile for these two companies? If not, please explain why not?