Leadership And Change Management
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Today for business organizations it is imperative that they continually change and update the way they are doing business and make sure that they are as per the trends in market. In this regard it may not be wrong to say that organizational change is such an aspect of business operations which if not designed and implemented properly, then can disrupt whole operations of the company (Johnson, 2002). This way the very existence may be put into danger. In the present report The Auto Company, world’s one of the leading automobile solutions providers, has been taken as an example so as to determine, how much necessary it is for the firm to adapt to changing business environment and implement the same at workplace. Also an attempt has been made so as to suggest ways through which authorities can successfully implement the same.
The dynamic nature of the business enviornment owes to the reason, fact that various elements of the scenario that it operates in along with numerous aspects of their operations are evolving (Beerel, 2009). The Auto Company is one of the best and leading automobile companies, when it comes to providing automobile solutions to companies manufacturing vehicles. As this industry is becoming more and more competitive, it has become imperative for the company that it adjusts to the evolving business environment, or else its very existence may be put into a state of jeopardy and confusion. Herein it can also be said that through effective leadership and change management strategies only can the company adapt to the changing environment.
Leadership is such an aspect of business operations which has a great impact on functioning of the employees and attainment of various goals and objectives (Grunig and Kuhn, 2010). Therefore it may not be wrong say that the automobile company would have to such leaders at the help who can lead employees through this difficult period and make contributions to fulfillment of the aims and objectives. Leadership styles have a direct bearing on motivation levels and dedication of the staff members towards organizational goals and objectives. Owing to this reason that the Auto Company’s leaders should adapt to and use such leadership styles through which they can have the maximum positive impact on performance and productivity of the employees. Today the industry in which it is operating has become very competitive and changes are being brought about every now and then (White, 2004). It is in light of this fact that the leaders need to utilize such approaches through which they can bring about the desired change at the workplace and try to make sure that it is well accepted by the employees.
Leadership and Change Management Theories are of great use in those situations where in the industry that a business is operating in is evolving on a continuous basis, as it is becoming more and more competitive each and every day (Graetz, 2000). Therefore it may not be wrong to say that it is through such theories only that the company can adapt to such changes and implement them at the workplace. There are various facets that go into designing and implementation of leadership and change management theories. One of them is that for staying afloat and competitive in the market, it is the only way through which the management can do so.
But to determine the best suited leadership and change management theories, a SWOT analysis of the company can be carried out. This analysis would provide the management with enough opportunities related to operations of the company and thus help the management in determining what kind of leadership and change management strategies would be best suited to the company (Anderson and Anderson, 2010). Following is a SWOT Analysis of the company, through which an attempt can be made so as to identify and evaluate the best suited leadership style for the company:
Strengths: They are the strong points of the firm. One of the strongest areas of the company is that it is a leader of the market and many a times is seen as the big fish of this industry. This essentially means that the market which has been captured by the firm is huge. It is the strongest point on which all operations of the Auto Company are dependent (Korte and Chermack, 2007). Also that the firm boasts of having a very unique culture where in innovation and experimentation is given a lot of importance. It is also a industry leader in terms of the innovative automobile solutions that it provides.
Weaknesses: These are known as those areas where the company lacks and that too by a considerable margin. One of the prime weaknesses of the firm is that it does not have an extensive presence in the emerging economies and countries. This means that there are very few outlets of the company in emerging countries such as that of India, China, etc (Mallinger, 2009). The brand perceptions of customers towards the firm is very low which means that either the customers are not happy with performance and services that the firm provides, or that over the years it has not been able to make inroads into the market, effectively as the management or authorities would have thought of it to be. In addition to it, the prices of products and services that it sells in the market also are very high, which again contribute to negative customer perceptions.
Opportunities: As the market is evolving on a continuous basis, there are a lot of opportunities and chances which can be grabbed by the company, so as to sustain in the market and earn good revenues (Linn, 2008). In the same context, one of the opportunities present in market for the company is that of the continuously rising demand for cars all around the world. In this regard it may not be wrong to say that due to such development and evolutions, market for The Auto Company looks to be very bright, due to reason that there are numerous opportunities that it can take advantage of. It includes the likes of chances to launch new and innovative products into the market. Similarly the company can also try to make its presence felt in various emerging economies (Blumen, 2000).
Threats: These are also known as the risk factors which may be faced by the organization while operating in the market. In this regard, one of the major risks which the company has to cope through is that of stiffening market, which means that this industry is becoming more competitive day by day. It can be supported through existence of companies such as Samsung in the market. Other hand, escalating prices of raw materials and their ever decreasing availability can be a major hindrance to the company.
Through the above SWOT analysis, it can be said that The Auto Company is in a very precarious condition as it has to face a lot of risks, while the strengths and opportunities are less (McKenzie and Aitken, 2012). Therefore for the company it is very much necessary that they determine and identify the best leadership and change management strategies which can be utilized. During such changing times, one of the best leadership styles would be use the transformational style; while the change management strategy that the management can use would be that of Kotter’s eight step change model.
Another very good way through which leadership and change management strategies for a company can be determined is through a thorough analysis of the external business environment that it operates in (Johnson, 2005). This will provide the management a chance where in it can assess the uncontrollable business environment and thus be able to determine the best and most effective theories. Following is a PESTLE evaluation of the company and surroundings that it functions in:
Political: The automobile industry is one of the highly regulated industries, mainly because of reason that there are numerous rules and regulations which have been devised and applied to it. Also that today the political corridors of countries all around the world have become highly unstable, due to which operating in this sector has become very difficult (Steiner, 2010).
Economic: Due to the recent economic crisis, in reality the world has not overcome it. In this regard, sales of automobiles in general has decreased and that too by a great margin. Because of this very reason, sales as well as customers of the company reduced drastically.
Social: People all around the world have realized the fact that automobiles are one of the main culprits of rising pollution (Harrison, 2005). Due to this very fact, many people are now discouraging the use of cars for their everyday lives, instead they tend to rely more on public transport services. The main reason behind it is high levels of toxic gases that the cars emit into environment.
Technological: It is another factor which has a great impact on working of the industry and companies within it. As the technology used in cars and other automobiles is developing at a fast rate, so has the need for companies which provide automotive solutions to adapt to the latest technology (Gregory, 2001).
Legal: It is a well known fact that the automotive industry is a highly regulated one; which essentially means that companies have to follow such regulations, or else their very existence may be put into a state of jeopardy.
Environmental: Automotive industry is said to be the most negatively influencing natural environment. Due to which various national and international bodies have formed such rules which have to be followed by companies so as to reduce their effect on the environment (May, 2010).
There are numerous types of leadership styles of which some can be used by management of an organization. One of the best such style is that of Transformational leadership, as it can prove to be a very efficient and effective style when it comes to introducing and implementing a change at the workplace (Turki, 2011). This is so because of reason that it would aid the leader or manager by a big margin in ensuring that they can guide the employees in the most effective of manners so that they can adapt to the change and then implement it in their daily working life. Transformational leaders basically are characterized to be one of the best styles when it comes to motivating the employees, boosting their morale and improving their performance as well as workplace productivity. It is the duty of transformational leaders to motivate their employees in such a manner that they themselves get dedicated to the company and try to give their best performance, so as to attain various goals and objectives (Simerson, 2011). In this regard it may not be wrong to say that it is through such an approach only that they can engage into activities through which the employees can be motivated and then made to give their best performance. Herein it can also be said that such a leadership style would to a great extent help the management as well as leaders to motivate and lead their staff in an effective manner, so that it can be ensured that they would not only give the best performance but also that they are fully dedicated to the company (Grunig and Kuhn, 2010).
There are a lot many leadership styles which can be considered by both leaders as well as management of the company. Some of them are the likes of transactional leadership, contingency leadership, situational, etc. But during times of change, they may not seem to be very useful to the company. In the same context such styles will not prove to be as useful as the transformational one can prove to be, because of reason such styles would not motivate the staff members and also not make them to give the best performance (Korte and Chermack, 2007). The contingency theory of leadership states that leaders should not develop and follow any particular leadership style. Rather they should be ready to follow any style so as to adjust to the situation that they are stuck in. Situational leadership style is also pretty much the similar, as it also states that the leader should not stick to any particular style, but instead his decision must be made on the basis of situation that he is facing. Therefore in this regard it may not be wrong to say that leaders and/or managers of the company would have to follow the transformational leadership style, as it would be the most effective one (Blumen, 2000).
Change management is such an aspect of business operations which must be paid a lot of attention to because of reason that the environment that the Auto Company is functioning in. Some of the change management models which can be considered by management at the company include the likes of Lewin’s change management model. This model embarks that 2 stages to implementing a change in an organization exists – Unfreeze, Change and Refreeze. According to the model to implement a change in the organization, first management would first have to make sure that the change that they are looking to implement should be well accepted by the management. In this regard it may not be wrong to say that in this stage, the leader and/or managers would have to interact with the employees and try to convince them in favor of the change (White, 2004). The next stage entails that the change once well accepted by the employees should be implemented by the management. Herein it is needed that the management introduces the change in such a manner that it does not negatively influence working of the company as well as negatively motivate the employees. While in the next stage requires that once the change has been implemented at the workplace, management would have to then make sure that all other functions which at a time were stopped are started again (Thompson, 2008). On the other hand, the Kotter’s eight step model of change management requires that a lot of efforts to be put in by the management so that it can be ensured that the change is well accepted and implemented at the workplace. Through this model, the change can be implemented in a much efficient and effective manner at the workplace, and also that performance of the company is not negatively affected by it. In this regard it may not be wrong to say that Kotter’s eight step model would be much useful to the company (Harrison, 2005).
From the above study it can be concluded the Auto Company is operating in such an industry which is getting more and more competitive, due to which a lot of changes are being introduced from time to time in companies. During the course of this study it was found that due to development in operations of the industry and it becoming highly competitive, future of the organization is in very precarious condition. To combat this situation, the management and leaders would have to adopt transformational leadership and Kotter’s eight step change management model.
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