Sunday, April 22, 2012

Change - Is it always necessary?


“Nothing is permanent except change.” Change as such is not only inevitable but also necessary. Organizations like everything else keep undergoing a continuous process of change. Whenever an old leader is replaced by a new one or when an old management is replaced by a new one then change becomes an apparent phenomenon. Obviously management philosophies and style differ according to individuals in charge. However, when one is replacing someone then there seems to be many instances of not just necessary but also needless changes. Everybody has this inner need to make a difference and stand out. Bringing drastic changes seem to be their way of standing out. Critically evaluating a process or established procedure is important. However, looking for faults is never a good practice. Critical analysis means making a list of the good and the bad. If something already in place works then there is no need to make a change. What about making an effort to sustain the ongoing process instead? If there are some loopholes then one can work on preventing them. If there are some problems in the existing process then one can work on resolving them.

Standing out as a leader and making a mark doesn’t consist only in bringing new changes. Not all changes are good. Sometimes continuing on a established pattern would be a wiser choice to make. At the end, the test of a leader isn’t only about what new he/she created but also how he/she delivered the results. Rather than being a management that believes in ‘change’, why not be a management that believes in a ‘shared vision’ and ‘delivering results in the best way possible’. The best way might not always be a new way. Many times the old way with some minor improvements could be the best way of achieving targets. For this to happen the leaders and the body of management needs to keep their personal issues aside and look ahead towards a common purpose of seeking an option that works best for the organization. Yes, changes happen and one needs to learn how to initiate change and adapt to them. But, is change always necessary? That’s a bigger question to ask. Perhaps some new leaders and new management forget to focus on ‘what’s working’ and are too keen on finding faults that the change they initiate ends up being a bad change instead of a good one.
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Friday, April 20, 2012

Rules or Results?

Recently there has been a lot of changes at my workplace. Restructuring and a new management has created a kind of chaos that has directly affected the quality of service it has been providing its customers. Besides the negative impact to the external customers there's also a lot of confusion and resistance among the internal staffs. While there are a lot of reasons that led to this situation, one of the key problems is that policies and procedures have become the center of focus more than the end results. Having a system is important in ensuring uniformity and fairness. However, at what cost have you established the system? Is following rules more important than delivering results? I've also noticed that binding employees in a set of rigid rules is a way of taking away the spirit of team work. Making every individual accountable for a specific set of work is a good idea but does it come at the cost of individuals ignoring the bigger picture? While some changes are good, some changes look like simply a way of exercising dominance. If it's an organization that believes in its vision and customer orientation more than anything, then why is it so stuck in paper work and rigid rules rather than the results? And, why are the rules and changes that was supposed to bring security and standardization causing inconvenience to the customers instead? Why is the value of mutuality being lost in the midst of all this change? I guess the ones who've brought by this rule-based need to ask themselves this question once: "What are we training our staffs for - to make them leaders or docile followers? Are we teaching them about rules to oblige by or helping them understand the shared purpose based on an organization wide vision?" 
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