Levels of Organizational Change Programs

The various  levels of organizational change programs may be classified into individual  level changes, group level changes and organisational level changes.

Levels of Organizational Change Programs

Individual Level Change Programs

Individual level changes may take place due to changes in job  assignment, transfer of an employee to a different location or the changes in the  maturity level of a person which occurs over a passage of time. The general  opinion is that change at the individual level will not have significant  implications for the organisation. But this is not correct because individual level  changes will have impact on the group which in turn will influence the whole  organisation. Therefore, a manager should never treat the employees in  isolation but he must understand that the individual level change will have  repercussions beyond the individual.

Group Level Change Programs

Management must consider group factors while implementing any  change, because most of the organisational changes have their major effects at  the group level. The groups in the organisation can be formal groups or  informal groups. Formal groups can always resist change for example, the trade  unions can very strongly resist the changes proposed by the management.  Informal groups can pose a major barrier to change because of the inherent  strength they contain. Changes at the group level can affect the work flows, job  design, social organisation, influence and status systems and communication  patterns.

The groups, particularly the informal groups have a lot of influence on  the individual members on the group. As such by effectively implementing change at the group level, resistance at the individual level can be frequently  overcome.

Organization Level Change Programs

The organisational level change involves major programs which  affect both the individuals and the groups. Decisions regarding such changes  are made by the senior management. These changes occur over long periods of  time and require considerable planning for implementation. A few different  types of organisation level changes are:

  1. Strategic Change: Strategic change is the change in the very basic objectives  or missions of the organisation. A single objective may have to be changed to  multiple objectives. For example, a lot of Indian companies are being modified  to accommodate various aspect of global culture brought in by the multinational  or transnational corporations.
  2. Structural Change: Organisational structure is the pattern of relationships  among various positions and among various position holders. Structural change  involves changing the internal structure of the organisation. This change may be  in the whole set of relationships, work assignment and authority structure.  Change in organisation structure is required because old relationships and  interactions no longer remain valid and useful in the changed circumstances.
  3. Process Oriented Change: These changes relate to the recent technological  developments, information processing and automation. This will involve  replacing or retraining personnel, heavy capital equipment investment and  operational changes. All this will affect the organisational culture and as a result  the behavior pattern of the individuals.
  4. People Oriented Change: People oriented changes are directed towards  performance improvement, group cohesion, dedication and loyalty to the  organisation as well as developing a sense of self actualization among members.  This can be made possible by closer interaction with employees and by special  behavioral training and modification sessions. To conclude, we can say that  changes at any level affect the other levels. The strength of the effect will  depend on the level or source of change.

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