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INNOVATION AND CHANGE Innovate or Perish: The Strategic Role of Change Environmental forces drive the need for major organizational change. Technological change, international economic integration, maturation of markets in developed countries, and the fall of Communist and Socialist regimes bring global changes, which in turn results in more threats and more opportunities, and more large-scale change in organizations. Change rather than stability is the norm. Incremental versus Radical Change Incremental change represents a series of continuous progressions that maintain the organization's general equilibrium, often affecting only one organization part. It occurs through the established structure and management process, and may include new technologies and product improvements. Radical change breaks the frame of reference for the organization and often transforming the entire organization. Typically it involves the creation of a new structure and management processes. Strategic Types of Change Technology change pertains to the organization's production process. Product and service changes pertain to new product or service outputs of the organization. Strategy and structure changes pertain to the administrative domain, including structure, goals, policies, reward systems, labor relation systems, information systems, planning, accounting, and linkage devices. Culture changes refer to changes in attitudes, skills, expectations, and behavior of employees. Elements for Successful Change Organizational change is the adoption of a new idea or behavior by an organization, whereas organizational innovation is the adoption of an idea or behavior that is new to the organization's industry, market, or general environment. The required elements of successful change include: 1. an idea , which is a new way to do things; 2. a perceived need for change; 3. adoption , when decision makers choose to go ahead with an idea; 4. implementation , when employees learn to actually use a new idea, technique, or behavior; and 5. resources which must be allocated to make change happen, including the human time and energy required to bring about change. Technology Change The organic approach, which is typically associated with change, suggests that technical innovation can be increased by having organic internal processes of flexibility, decentralization, and few rules and regulations. Mechanistic structures , which may be the best structures for efficiency with routine products, are believed to inhibit technical innovation. 1
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This note was uploaded on 02/06/2011 for the course BUSINESS 398 taught by Professor Allanmarshal during the Spring '11 term at Wilfred Laurier University .

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