Leadership in Change Management

Leadership in Change Management

Uğur Zel (University of Wollongong in Dubai, UAE)
Copyright: © 2016 |Pages: 17
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-4666-9533-7.ch013
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Change is a must for all kinds of organizations. However, most of the change initiatives fail to achieve the desired outcomes. This paradigm makes the change process more complex and frightening in our mindsets. When you make a search at “amazon.com” for the books published (only in English) on “change management” you will see that there are more than 90,000 books on this subject. Are these books not enough to help “managers” learn how to manage change? Of course, we have enough information about how to manage change. However, it is more important to know how to “lead” change. This may be the major reason that most of the organizations fail in change process. This chapter mainly focuses on leader's roles in change process and gives behavioral directions related with “transition” which effects the success of a change effort more in organizations. The things which should be planned and executed by leaders are examined and formatted with a process based approach.
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First, Leaders Should Understand the Meaning of “Change”

A leader should think about the meaning of “change” with different perspectives: What is change? Why do we have to change? When to change? How to change? How to trigger change? The answers may differ from source to source, however, there is one thing that is constant is “change never stops”. Change equates with life, with our own personal, social, mental and physical development and with our ability to learn, to adapt, to play an active role in social and community activities. So, a leader should create his/her own style to adapt himself/herself and his/her organization to continuously changing environment.

“Change” can be broadly defined as “to make something different” or “to start something new, become/make different” (BusinessDictionary.com). However, in the context of organizational change, others have noted that any definition of change is potentially problematic (Kanter et al., 1991; Tichy, 1983). In a world that change is accepted as inevitable with incredible speed, ambiguity is a constant, organizations that reduce cycle time for production, supply, distribution, innovation etc. are believed to be the most competitive.

Organizational change is defined as “adoption of a new idea or a behavior by an organization” (Sengupta, 2006, 2). Organizational change is primarily structural in character and it is designed to bring about alterations in organizational structure, methods and processes.

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