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Leading And Manage Change in IKEA

University: Mont Rose College

  • Unit No: 8
  • Level: Undergraduate/College
  • Pages: 17 / Words 4243
  • Paper Type: Assignment
  • Course Code:
  • Downloads: 1221
Question :

Change is the method to create the effectiveness in the business through some new idea and technology. Kindly do address all the learning outcomes.

  • Explain all the changes that are needed in the organization with the strategic operations.
  • Explain the change management theory with their tactics and strategies.
  • What is planned and unplanned change in non-organizational development.
  • What are the important areas and the individual resistance for the change.
Answer :
Organization Selected : IKEA


Change is an initiative that is taken by company for having effective growth in business operations. As an increase in number of organisation need of modifications must be considered as an essential procedure so as to survive in market area for a longer period of time. Thus, managing change is an ongoing and continuous process which helps company in making strategies and structures. Therefore, in order to clarify changes there are two kinds of metaphor i.e. “Calm Water” in which modifications are done on a slow pace and “White Water” deals with dynamic change and it is mostly incorporated by entrepreneurs (White and Le Cornu, 2011). Company which is taking in this assignment is IKEA is a Swedish company that deals in Retail, but majorly focus on selling furnitures. Since 2008, they are the leading company for ready-to-assemble furnitures. Moreover IKEA is known for developing modernist designs for different goods. Company has around 415 stores in 49 countries and approximately 194, 000 employees are working in these stores providing maximum benefits to the organisation. IKEA's revenue is close to £40.906 billion as per the study conducted in 2016. This assignment will focus on effects of both white water and calm water metaphor on IKEA and what changes company faces in working environment because of the modification that are happening at workplace. Along with this, planned strategies are also explained for having better understanding of HR department of IKEA is working in order to increase its business growth.

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1. Analysis of white water metaphor resulted from planned and unplanned approach to change

Change is necessary if company are willing to lead market place, for this firm can use simple leadership skills that demands for fluidity. If modifications are applied successfully than it can provide company extreme competitive advancement. To grow in a positive way it is necessary that firm has commitment towards their goal, agility, innovation, disruption, fluidity and unbiasness towards anything which leads a company in getting effective outcomes. IKEA is a multinational company that provides the products like home appliances, ready-to-assemeble furnitures, home accessories in nut firm is popularly known for largest furniture retail organisation around the globe (YIN and YE, 2014). IKEA is a Swedish company and was found in the year 1943, since than they are giving excellent services to its clients. Firm have shops and outlets in almost 411 different locations and this is helping enterprise in gaining maximum number of benefits from there. In there shops around 194,000 number of employees are working who are helping company with providing effective services and facilities to its customers.

Change can be classified into two factors i.e. planned and unplanned change both of them are explained below for having better understanding:

Planned: Planning denotes with an activity that includes certain steps through which can create a possibility of change so that it can be implemented for gaining better outcomes. For this, it is crucial that company recognise the interdependency of planning and change effectively as it will assist firm in making effective strategies and plan of action. Therefore, IKEA undertake this activity and merge with the process which can be handled and manage by any superior of a company. Thus, planning can be said a procedure under which strategies are made by carefully with the help of data that are available to company. It is very effective in nature as it is majorly based on actual performance of organisation. In relation with planned change, IKEA can use calm water metaphor so that if company face any kind of issues and problems in business operations than with the help of planned and formulated strategies they can do changes as per the market scenario which will further assist firm in gaining maximum benefits in the market area.

Unplanned: Change to work practice in company is very necessary in order to establish themselves at market area for a longer period of time. But in unplanned change as modifications are done on a rapid speed so no definite planning is done. Basically it is incorporated for accomplishing short terms goals in a speculated time frame. Although it gives effective outcomes but unplanned change can sometimes faces resistance because of the uncertainty and ambiguity. In terms of unplanned change, IKEA can use white water metaphor for coping up with the problems that are happening in the market area. For example: new and latest designs and change in fashion trends that is happening in the market.

White-water metaphor is a factor organisation is evaluated as smaller raft navigating flowing river with white water rapids which are uninterrupted. Thus changes occurs naturally and managing these changes are known as continual process (Peltola and Saresma, 2014). The environment condition which is dynamic and uncertain both are taken into consideration. Thus, white metaphor is determined as an approach which is unpredictable in nature and provides with benefits in speculated period of time. For this managers of a company implement various kinds of tools and technologies and this is mostly used by entrepreneurs who wants their business to grow at a rapid speed.

Characteristics of White Water Metaphor:

  • After applying this method, company can get instant results which will assist firm in sustaining a better position in market area for a longer period of time.
  • It is dynamic in nature and sallow company in using various tools and technologies for accomplishing set goals and objectives.

Therefore, characteristics of white water metaphor is giving great opportunities and assisting firm in obtaining targets and objectives in a given period of time.

In relation with IKEA, they are using emergent trend because these are less perspective and more analytical in nature therefore, it provides with a better perspectives of understanding issues and problems within complex environment as well. As a result if company are implementing white metaphor than it should be linked with change which will assist company in providing better services and facility to its customers.

According to the recent trends that is present in market area, most of the companies are transferring themselves from planned to unplanned approach. IKEA is one of the them, for getting better results company is now focussing more on unplanned approach. This is happening because of change in the environment and perception of human behaviour. As company mainly deals in furniture and with the change in course of time new and attractive designs are coming and IKEA is manufacturing assembling furnitures that are eye catchy. An example can be taken form the company to make life more easier and conformable IKEA is manufacturing goods that are not pre-assembled instead these can be arranges by customer itself. This has helped company in reducing their cost price and in addition to this shipping is easy as it doesn't require much spaces. IKEA is focussing on integrated approach in order to design best attractive furnishing. For making household items firm are using smart technologies which was a unique step in the process of making innovative and advanced furnitures, and in this organisation has Sonos' Smart Speakers and its first product will be launched in the year 2019. In the year 2016, IKEA planned to move into smart home business and according to the lifestyle of today's world they are making houses which are although small but have all kind of facilities in their homes. Therefore, White water metaphor is helping company in making unplanned changes and in return firm is getting maximum benefits.

2. Evaluation of different kinds of reasons for the shift from calm water to white waters, by considering business strategy and external factors as well

Change is constant, multifaceted and sometimes overwhelming, if company wants to get success and meet challenges and goals doing modifications can help firm in doing so. In the field of organisational structure alterations in work practice and strategies can assist companies in getting success (Willis, 2017).

Calm Water Metaphor, it can be understood with the concept of a large ship that can be considered as an organisation which is going through a calm sea and suddenly experiences a occasional storm. This idea of Calm Water Metaphor was successfully illustrated by Kurt Lewin's three step model of change process. According to the Lewin, for planning a successful change it is require that unfreezing of status quo is done, afterwards modification for a new state is accomplishes and lastly, refreezing the changed concept in order to make it permanent so that company can gain relevant outcomes from them. Detailed explanation is given for having a better understanding:

Unfreezing: This is considered as a first stage of change under which it prepares company in taking and accepting modifications if it is necessary and through which company can get maximum benefits. Therefore, it can be said that firm needs to start from the core and prepare a whole new strategies by focussing on challenges and complications that will come in future. Thus, it is one of the most difficult and stressful process where company has to put all its efforts for making entire thing balanced. Therefore, in relation with IKEA, for example: for change in trends of furniture, company is first eliminated old designs and and started making new and effective designs which can further attract a large number of customers. Although for instance firm will gain maximum benefits but for employees they can face some kind of problems as stress level will be higher.

Change to a new state: It is determined as second stage in which company tends to find out relevant solutions for resolving issues and problems which firm can face in their business operations. Thus, firm look for new and innovative ways in order to perform the task effectively. It can be said that the procedure of transforming from unfreeze to change doesn't happen overnight as it requires proper planning (Stoddard and Afari, 2014). For this process, related model which company can incorporate is Change curve model that helps firm in understanding personal transitions and changes that are happening in external and internal environment. Time and communication are the two factors that helps change to occur successfully. In terms of IKEA, they had to make strategies and action plan like incorporating eco-freindly materials which don't harm environment. In addition to this, company can manufacture furniture which are easy to assemble and attractive as well. Therefore, for implementing this, company is required to make develop strategies so that benefits can be gained. In relation to drawback change in organisation process can create chaos amongst employees which will further hamper the process of executing plans effectively.

Refreezing: It is the last stage in which change takes shapes and people encourage new ways of working which can provide them with benefits. In this company make sure that whatever strategies are made can be used for longer period of time and that can be incorporated into everyday business. This assist employees in working more comfortably and with sense of stability. In relation with IKEA, if products are not providing any benefits than they can refreeze and make some modification in their goods so that it can add value to the product.

White water metaphor is a change that are unpredictable and happens on a regular basis. Thus, it is prime duty of managers to be ready for the changes that are to be faced by company, disruptions in the status quo can be seen in this and these are permanent instead of occasional and temporary.

IKEA is a retail store and a Swedish multinational company that is a leading company and provides with a large number of products and services. As the firm is big so there are different kinds of factors that can have and impact on business operations thus, it is prime duty of managers how they accept all these factors whether in a positive or a negative manner (Anderson and Peters, 2014). Although company is getting maximum benefits but with the change in course of time there are some reasons because of which firm is making some changes in the policies and they are as follows:

Increase in Competition: In recent times there are various firms who are doing the same business and gaining maximum benefits in the market area. So, in order to go with the current market scenario, it is crucial that firm make some modifications which will assist companies in standing with other rival organisation. After implementation of new technologies firm's income has raise to positive manner.

Unfavourable impact on sales and profitability: If services are not provided according to the choices and preferences than a decrease in sales and profitability can be seen. There was an incident that put a negative impact on the sales and this happens because of fake publicity in which prices of products were high in rates as compared to other Canadians stores and American stores.

After analysing the above mentioned statements it can be evaluated that change is necessary if company wants to get into a better position. For instance, accepting modifications can create problems for employees and workers who are working in an organisation. IKEA, because of not getting effective outcomes after applying calm water metaphor, they changed their process and shifted towards white water metaphor which provided them instant benefits but created some issues and problems for workers in understanding new strategies.

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Other than the factors mentioned above there are various kinds of factors that can be the reason for shifting of companies from calm water to white water approaches are explained below:

Political Factors:

Influence of Brexit: Term Brexit is the combination of two words i.e. Britain and Exit. This came in referendum on June 2016 and it was implemented for the period of years i.e. from 2017 to 2019. Companies has to face various kinds of legal laws and regulations which created problem in operating its business in an effective manner (Barner, 2011). Tax rates have been increased because of which company had to give a large amount of money for running their business in a better manner.

Economic Factor:

GDP Growth and sales: GDP of a country defines overall sales performance of an organisation. IKEA has an increase of around US$4.898 billion according to a recent study which is higher as compared to previous years. Therefore, whatever revenues company is getting is directly or indirectly increasing the nation's GDP.

Trade Cycle and cost of Raw Materials: For manufacturing goods and commodities company needs raw material and along with this, firm had to face with different kinds of trade cycle for operating its business in an effective manner. In this modern world choices and preferences of people are changing in quick time because of which overall demands gets hampered. For example: for making furniture company has to wait for their distributors who will provide company with raw material for accomplishing its final products (Olney, 2017).


Influence of cultural difference: Every place has its own culture and they are different from one another. For example: Products of Japan are lighter as compared with the commodities that are made by Germany. As IKEA is a leading company and have their stores across the world so, it is prime duty of company to manufacture goods according to the choices and preferences of customers which will enable company in increasing its sales and profitability in a speculated period of time.

Changing trends: According to the recent times, people are preferring products which can made life easier. Individual is choosing a small house with all kind of facilities rather than lavish houses. For this, people are preferring goods that are easy to handle and which comes under minimum cost. IKEA is a process of smart homes are providing with all kinds of facilities that are necessary for living.

After Brexit, economic currency of UK has fallen to the lowest level as seen in last 31 years. Along with this, in 2017 inflation has rise to 2 to 3 percent via 2.6% for manufactured products and 2.7% on transport equipment. So, this will impact on profitability of IKEA also as supplying power suppliers become high. Due to which cost of raw materials and other resources used in production increases. Thus, due to this reason, employers of IKEA have faced much issues in recovering its revenue.

Technological Factor:

New and latest technologies: Technology has came as a revolutionary for human beings, and in terms of companies they are using these latest technologies for manufacturing goods right on time so that firm can deliver these products in speculated time frame (Adger and et. al., 2013). As a result with the help of new technologies IKEA is being able to manufacture goods that are advanced for example: Sonos' Smart Speakers in furnitures that are produced by company.

Use of digitalisation: With the help of digitalisation, IKEA is being able to keep their old records in terms of sales and profitability. Further, for getting any kind of information company don't have to go through old books for searching their records, now firm can easily access these in just one click. Digitalisation is also helping company in interacting with its customers and taking their feedbacks for doing some kind of changes in business operations if necessary.

Therefore, all the factors that are mentioned above is playing an important role in shifting from clam water to white water metaphor in order to increase its sales and profitability.

3. Relevant theories along with strategic approaches and its implications on HR Department for handling the shift

IKEA is termed as a big company in United Kingdom and they have their own benchmarks in it comes to effective Human resource management. In their company approximate 194,000 employees are working in stores that are located in different areas. For their employees company is providing with best possible resources through which employees can give effective returns to its customers. While formulating new strategies company majorly focus on needs and wants of employees which assist company in gaining loyalty of employees for a longer period of time (Kotter, 2012). IKEA has implemented rules and regulations in their organisation so that all working can be done in a systematic manner. Implications of HRD -

In this modern era, human resource development has become one of the vital concept of every business organisations. Implication of HR policies thus its key elements are tend towards providing suitable structure and directions to effective and optimal utilisation of available resources thus to gain high competitive edge. HRM practices are implemented with an aim to provide training and development, workplace safety and performance management to IKEA.

Other than this, managers of company ensure that employees follow all norms that are required for having appropriate working. Some of the theories that have been incorporated by IKEA are explained below:

Theory of Human Resource Department:

In this, firm provides with broad spectrum which employees can take according to the needs and wants and this includes certain factors that are explained below:

Behaviourism: It is a systematic approach that helps company in understanding behaviour of humans. This approach helps organization in order to develop plans and policies according to which employees can achieve their set gaols and targets in effectual and planned manner. There should be focus on adopting new systems and policies in order to achieve satisfied customers.

Cognitivism: In this company majorly focus on mental approach rather than physical activities. Thus, IKEA is providing with various kinds of activities through which employees can develop their cognitive skills like reasoning practice, critical thinking and aptitudes and memory exercises. In terms of IKEA it is assisting employees in designing and making innovative furniture products and other items as well.

Constructivism: This is totally based ion hypothesis, and it learning depends upon interest of individual's interest. So, it is crucial that an individual knows the field in which they are capable and activities for which a person has to work in order to make it perfect. Past work experience and social foundation here plays an important role as it helps an individual in taking appropriate decision for right situations (Dilling and Berggren, 2015). IKEA is involving its staff members in meetings and seminars so that they can interact with superiors and know how to perform in difficult situations.

Connectivity: As IKEA is a retail company so it is essential that company provides with proper training so that employee can interact with its clients effectively. For this, company is giving training to its workers and firm is making employees knowledgable with the help of data and authentic sources.

Therefore, all these factors that are mentioned above are helping IKEA in handling the shift of approaches from calm to white water metaphor. As these are assisting companies in managing their business operations in an effective manner. Through this it helping firm in going according to the current market scenario.

There are two types of changes, i.e. planned and unplanned. In context of human resource management planned changed are related with training & development and performance management. For example – after providing training and development assistance to employees then change can been in their performance level whereas performance management system is applied to improve performance and efficiency of workforce; it leads changes in production level of the company. Hence, these comes under planned changed. Apart from this, unplanned changes relate workplace safety and employee engagement which occurs due to some external forces. For example – HR policies are also based upon workplace safety but to some hindrances company is not able to safety and security of employees at workplace, whereas employee behaviour get affect so many reasons through which they are unable to involve in decision making process. These changes relates with unplanned changes of the company.

Implications of human resource department:

With reference to the human resource department, role of HR manager is to monitor that all the procedures and policies which are formulated must be made with the motive of utilising all the available resources with customer satisfaction (Doppelt, 2017). Several training and development sessions are conducted in order to develop skills of the employees which are essential for business growth.

Motivational theories

Maslow hierarchy need theory was given by Abraham Maslow, this theory was based on the needs on employees which can be identified and evaluated in pyramid form of hierarchy. In this theory first and foremost priority is given to the basic needs of the individual that is food, cloth and shelter after fulfilling these needs next priority is to provide job security and health security to individual. After this hierarchy need is further followed with their social needs and self actualization need.

Human resource manager of IKEA is advised to recruit individual according to their skills, work capabilities and match this with the right job profile. This will help increasing productivity level IKEA and improves employees satisfaction (Fullan, 2014). As IKEA is increasing its number of stores in order to expand their business, this provides more opportunity to existing employees to actively participate in new job roles which satisfies their personal and professional goals.


From the above report it has been concluded that, process of change is very crucial in order to upgrade business operations in a better manner. For this companies are using various kinds of tools and techniques for operating its business in an effective manner. Stuck with you case study then take our IKEA case study help at best prices. Modifications must be done when company is in greater benefits or rather firm can face difficulties. There are various approaches of change and change which company has adopted was both Calm and White water metaphor according to the market situation that are present in the environment. For handling all these kinds of modifications company can hire eligible managers who can perform their task and give maximum benefits to organisation.

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