ECE _ DSST Organizational Behavior

Change agents are people who act as catalysts and

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Unformatted text preview: Change Agents are people who act as catalysts and assume the responsibility for managing change activities. Change agents can be managers or nonmanagers, employees of the organization or outside consultants. They can change structure, technology, physical setting, and people. For major change efforts, top managers are increasingly turning to temporary outside consultants with specialized knowledge. However, they are disadvantaged in that they often have an inadequate understanding of the organization’s history, culture, and operating procedures. Changing conditions demand organizational modifications. As a result, the change agent might need to modify the organization’s structure . Change agents can alter one or more of the key elements in an organization’s design. For instance, departmental responsibilities can be combined, vertical layers removed, and spans of control widened to make the organization flatter and less bureaucratic. More rules and procedures can be implemented to increase standardization. One of the most well-documented findings from studies of organizational behavior is that organizations and their members resist change. In a sense, resistance to change can be positive because it provides a degree of stability and predictability to behavior. The downside to resistance is that hinders adaptability and progress. Resistance can be overt, immediate, implicit, or deferred. It is easiest for management to deal with resistance when it is overt and immediate. For instance, a change is proposed and employees quickly respond by engaging in a work slowdown or threatening to strike. The greater challenge is managing resistance when it is implicit or deferred. Implicit resistance efforts are more subtle and tend to include such things as loss of loyalty to the organization or loss of motivation to work. Individual sources of resistance to change reside in basic human characteristics. Because humans tend to be creatures of habit , they may be resistant to change. To cope with the complexity of life, humans rely on habits or programmed responses. But when confronted with change, this tendency to respond in accustomed ways becomes a source of resistance. For example, when a person’s department is moved to a new office on the far side of town, it likely means that he or she will have to change many habits, such as waking up earlier, taking a new route to work, finding a new parking place, adjusting to the new office layout, and so on. Sturctural inertia are the built-in mechanisms to produce stability within an organization. For example, the selection process systematically selects certain people in and certain people out. Training and other socialization techniques reinforce specific role requirements and skills. The people who are hired into an organization are chosen for fit, and then they are shaped and directed to behave in certain ways. When an organization is confronted with change, structural inertia acts as a counterbalance to sustain stability...
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Change Agents are people who act as catalysts and assume...

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