Assignment 3: Ajax Minerals and Perrier
Due Week 7 and worth 175 points
Read the Ajax Minerals exercise and the Problems at Perrier case study in Chapter 6 of the Palmer textbook.
Write a six to eight (6-8) page paper in which you:
 Identify two (2) sources of resistance to change in the Ajax Minerals exercise and describe how the organization dealt with each type of resistance.  Identify two (2) sources of resistance to change in the Perrier case study and describe how the organization dealt with each type of resistance.  Compare and contrast how management diagnosed and approached change at the two (2) companies and indicate which company dealt with resistance to change in a more effective manner. Justify the reasoning.   Consider a situation as a consultant with Ajax Management. Propose two (2) adjustments that should be made to improve its change strategy and provide a justification as to why those adjustments would improve the effectiveness of the strategy. Consider a situation as a consultant with Perrier. Propose at least two (2) adjustments that should be made to improve its change strategy and provide a justification as to why those adjustments would increase the effectiveness of the strategy. Use at least three (3) quality academic resources in this assignment. Note: Wikipedia and other Websites do not qualify as academic resources.
 
 
 
Your assignment must follow these formatting requirements:
 Be typed, double spaced, using Times New Roman font (size 12), with one-inch margins on all sides; citations and references must follow APA or school-specific format. Check with your professor for any additional instructions. Include a cover page containing the title of the assignment, the student’s name, the professor’s name, the course title, and the date. The cover page and the reference page are not included in the required assignment page length.
 
 
 
The specific course learning outcomes associated with this assignment are:
 Analyze diagnostic models relevant to various aspects of the change management process. Evaluate the reactions to change including identifying signs of resistance and approaches to managing it. Use technology and information resources to research issues in managing organizational change. Write clearly and concisely about managing organizational change using proper writing mechanics.
Grading for this assignment will be based on answer quality, logic / organization of the paper, and language and writing skills, using the following rubric.
Points: 175
Assignment 3: Ajax Minerals and Perrier
Criteria Unacceptable
Below 70% F Fair
70-79% C Proficient
80-89% B Exemplary
90-100% A 1. Identify two (2) sources of resistance to change in the Ajax Minerals exercise and describe how the organization dealt with each type of resistance.
Weight: 17%
Did not submit or incompletely identified two (2) sources of resistance to change in the Ajax Minerals exercise and did not submit or incompletely described how the organization dealt with each type of resistance.
Partially identified two (2) sources of resistance to change in the Ajax Minerals exercise and partially    described how the organization dealt with each type of resistance.
Satisfactorily identified two (2) sources of resistance to change in the Ajax Minerals exercise and satisfactorily described how the organization dealt with each type of resistance.
Thoroughly identified two (2) sources of resistance to change in the Ajax Minerals exercise and thoroughly described how the organization dealt with each type of resistance.
2. Identify two (2) sources of resistance to change in the Perrier case study and describe how the organization dealt with each type of resistance.Weight: 17%
Did not submit or incompletely identified two (2) sources of resistance to change in the Perrier case study and did not submit or incompletely described how the organization dealt with each type of resistance.
Partially identified two (2) sources of resistance to change in the Perrier case study and partially described how the organization dealt with each type of resistance.
Satisfactorily identified two (2) sources of resistance to change in the Perrier case study and satisfactorily described how the organization dealt with each type of resistance.
Thoroughly identified two (2) sources of resistance to change in the Perrier case study and thoroughly described how the organization dealt with each type of resistance. 3. Compare and contrast how management diagnosed and approached change at the two (2) companies and indicate which company dealt with resistance to change in a more effective manner. Justify the reasoning.
Weight: 17%
Did not submit or incompletely compared and contrasted how management diagnosed and approached change at the two (2) companies and did not submit or incompletely indicated which company dealt with resistance to change in a more effective manner. Did not submit or incompletely justified the reasoning.
Partially compared and contrasted how management diagnosed and approached change at the two (2) companies and partially indicated which company dealt with resistance to change in a more effective manner.   Partially justified the reasoning.
Satisfactorily compared and contrasted how management diagnosed and approached change at the two (2) companies and satisfactorily indicated which company dealt with resistance to change in a more effective manner.     Satisfactorily    justified the reasoning.
Thoroughly compared and contrasted how management diagnosed and approached change at the two (2) companies and thoroughly indicated which company dealt with resistance to change in a more effective manner.     Thoroughly justified the reasoning. 4. Consider a situation as a consultant with Ajax Management. Propose two (2) adjustments that should be made improve its change strategy and provide a justification as to why those adjustments would improve the effectiveness of the strategy.
Weight: 17%
Did not submit or incompletely proposed two (2) adjustments that should be made to improve its change strategy and did not submit or incompletely provided a justification as to why those adjustments would improve the effectiveness of the strategy.
Partially proposed two (2) adjustments that should be made to improve its change strategy and partially provided a justification as to why those adjustments would improve the effectiveness of the strategy.
Satisfactorily proposed two (2) adjustments that should be made to improve its change strategy and satisfactorily provided a justification as to why those adjustments would improve the effectiveness of the strategy.
Thoroughly proposed two (2) adjustments that should be made to improve its change strategy and thoroughly provided a justification as to why those adjustments would improve the effectiveness of the strategy. 5. Consider a situation where as a consultant with Perrier. Propose at least two (2) adjustments you would make to improve its change strategy and provide a justification as to why those adjustments would increase the effectiveness of the strategy.
Weight: 17%
Did not submit or incompletely proposed at least two (2) adjustments that should be made to improve its change strategy and did not submit or incompletely provided a justification as to why those adjustments would increase the effectiveness of the strategy.
Partially proposed at least two (2) adjustments that should be made to improve its change strategy and partially provided a justification as to why those adjustments would increase the effectiveness of the strategy.
Satisfactorily proposed at least two (2) adjustments that should be made to improve its change strategy and satisfactorily provided a justification as to why those adjustments would increase the effectiveness of the strategy.
Thoroughly proposed at least two (2) adjustments that should be made to improve its change strategy and thoroughly provided a justification as to why those adjustments would increase the effectiveness of the strategy. 6. 3 references
Weight: 5%
No references provided
Does not meet the required number of references; some references poor quality choices.
Meets number of required references; all references high quality choices.
Exceeds number of required references; all references high quality choices. 7. Clarity, writing mechanics, and formatting requirements
Weight: 10%
More than 8 errors present
5-6 errors present
3-4 errors present
0-2 errors present
 
The information needed below
 
 
Chapter  6Resistance to ChangeLearning ObjectivesOn completion of this chapter you should be able to:•  Identify signs of resistance to change.•  Understand reasons for resistance to change.•  Be alert to resistance from within the ranks of management.•  Recognize the strengths and weaknesses of various approaches to the management of resistance to change.One of the commonly cited causes for the lack of success of organizational change is “resistance to change.” As such, it is not surprising that it is a phenomenon that encourages some strong responses. Maurer asserts, bluntly, that “resistance kills change,”1 while Foote colorfully describes resistance as “one of the nastiest, most debilitating workplace cancers [and claims that] there isn’t a more potent, paradoxical or equal-opportunity killer of progress and good intentions.”2 In a similar vein, Geisler describes those with a pattern of resisting change as “bottom-feeders” who resist change because of its potential to remove the “waste” (infighting, inefficient processes) on which they “feed.”3At the same time, other commentators have a more sympathetic “take” on resistance to change. A stark example in popular culture is the treatment of change in the Dilbert cartoons.4 (See Table 6.1.)Similarly, the image that one has of managing change is likely to be associated with a different perspective on the meaning of resistance (see Table 6.2).This chapter investigates the phenomenon of resistance to change and what it might mean to manage it.Support for ChangeAlthough “resistance to change” is a deeply embedded concept in the field of change, attention to this phenomenon should be placed in the context of recognition that people do not always resist change. Instead, they will often “embrace change”5 and work enthusiastically in support of change. There are many reasons why people are likely to be160TABLE 6.1The Dilbert Principle on ChangeSource: Adams, 1996:198.
 
People hate change, and with good reason. Change makes us stupider, relatively speaking. Change adds new information to the universe, information that we don’t know . . . On the other hand, change is good for people who are causing the change. They understand the new information that is being added to the universe. They grow smarter in comparison to the rest of us. This is reason enough to sabotage their efforts. I recommend sarcasm with a faint suggestion of threat.Changer: “I hope that I can count on your support.”You: “No problem. I’ll be delighted to jeopardize my short-term career goals to help you accomplish your career objectives.”Changer: “That’s not exactly—”You: “I don’t mind feeling like a confused rodent and working long hours, especially if the payoff is a new system that I vigorously argued against.”The goal of change management is to dupe slow-witted employees into thinking change is good for them by appealing to their sense of adventure and love of challenge. This is like convincing a trout to leap out of a stream to experience the adventure of getting deboned.
 
TABLE 6.2Images of Resistance to Change
 
Image of Managing ChangePerspective on Resistance to Change
DirectorResistance is a sign that not everybody is on board in terms of making the change. Resistance can and must be overcome in order to move change forward. Change managers need specific skills to ensure that they can deal with resistance to change.
NavigatorResistance is expected. It is not necessarily a sign of people being outside of their comfort zone so much as the fact that there are different interests within the organization and some of these may be undermined by the change. Resistance, therefore, will not always be able to be overcome, although this should be achieved as much as possible.
CaretakerResistance is possible but likely to be short-lived and ultimately futile. This is because, ultimately, changes will occur regardless of the attempts of individual actors within the organization to halt them. At best resistance might temporarily delay change but not be able to halt its inexorable impact.
CoachResistance is something that needs to be recognized and expected as change takes people out of their comfort zone. Change managers need to work with resistance in a way that reveals to the resistor that such actions are not in accord with good teamwork within the organization.
InterpreterResistance is likely where people lack understanding of “what is going on,” where the change is taking the organization, and what impact it will have on specific individuals. Making sense of the change, helping to clarify what it means, and reestablishing individual identity with the process and the expected outcome of the change will assist in addressing the underlying problems that led to the emergence of resistance.
NurturerResistance is largely irrelevant to whether or not change will occur. Changes will occur but not always in predictable ways. Therefore, resisting change will be largely a matter of guesswork by the resistor since change often emerges from the clash of chaotic forces and it is usually not possible to identify, predict, or control the direction of change.
 
161supportive of change. Kirkpatrick identifies the following as possible outcomes that are likely to cause people to react positively to change:6• Security. The change may increase demand for an individual’s skills and/or may put the organization on a more secure footing with subsequent impact on employment prospects.• Money. The change may involve salary increases.• Authority. The change may involve promotion and/or the allocation of additional decision-making discretion.• Status/prestige. There may be changes in titles, work assignments, office allocations, and so forth.• Responsibility. Job changes may occur.• Better working conditions. The physical environment may change; new equipment may be provided.• Self-satisfaction. Individuals may feel a greater sense of achievement and challenge.• Better personal contacts. The change may provide an individual with enhanced contact with influential people.• Less time and effort. The change may improve operational efficiencies.Signs of Resistance to ChangeResistance to change is “tridimensional,” involving affective, behavioral, and cognitive components.7 The affective component is how a person feels about a change (e.g., angry), the cognitive component is how a person thinks about a change (e.g., “It’s a crazy idea!”), and the behavioral component is what a person does in the face of a change.The behavioral response may take many forms. Hultman draws a distinction between active and passive responses and identifies a range of “symptoms” associated with each.8 The symptoms of active resistance are identified as being critical, finding fault, ridiculing, appealing to fear, using facts selectively, blaming or accusing, sabotaging (see Table 6.3,TABLE 6.3Merger in AdlandSource: Coombs, 1990.
 
When the advertising agencies Mojo and MDA merged, a decision was made to house all staff in the same building. However, as an interim step, all creative staff (copywriters, art directors, and production staff) would move to the existing Mojo offices and all management staff (the “suits”) to MDA’s offices.One of the Mojo people required to move was its finance director, Mike Thorley. Mike was one of the original Mojo employees and had come to think of himself more as a partner in the business than as an employee. However, the merger quickly disabused him of this when, the same as all other Mojo employees, he had no warning of the merger. When the announcement came, he reacted with both shock and anger. To add insult to injury, he was now required to move to the MDA offices—a move that felt to him like a banishment—where he would report to MDA’s finance director, who had been put in charge of finance for the merged entity.The Mojo culture had been considerably less formal than that of MDA. It was custom for Mojo staff to have a few drinks together after work seated around an old, solid-white bench in the office. In an attempt to make Thorley and his Mojo colleagues feel more at home, a modern black laminate bar had been installed in the MDA offices. One morning, Mike Thorley arrived at work with a chainsaw and cut the bar in two.
 
162TABLE 6.4The Aircraft Carrier of Madison AvenueSource: Sacks, 2006.
 
J. Walter Thompson was one of the largest and oldest advertising agencies in America, but by early this decade it was struggling. In 2002 and 2003 its New York operation had pitched for 20 new accounts and not won one. It also had lost key accounts and morale was low. Co-presidents Rosemarie Ryan and Ty Montague set themselves the task of changing the situation—no mean feat given the company’s reputation as “the aircraft carrier of Madison Avenue,” a derisive reference to the time/distance that it takes this particular form of vessel to turn around.Ryan and Montague’s plan was that the company would be rebadged as JWT and adopt a style of working that was much more fluid and fast moving; much less rule and hierarchy-bound. Their problem was that too many people were sitting on the fence. “‘There’s a group of people whose arms are folded, and they’re leaning back and waiting to see,’ Montague says. ‘Either you lean forward or you get out,’ adds Ryan, admitting that for JWT, inertia is still the biggest threat.”9
 
“Merger in Adland”), intimidating or threatening, manipulating, distorting facts, blocking, undermining, starting rumors, and arguing.Those symptoms identified with passive resistance are: agreeing verbally but not following through (“malicious compliance”10); failing to implement change; procrastinating or dragging one’s feet; feigning ignorance; withholding information, suggestions, help, or support; standing by; and allowing change to fail (see Table 6.4).This list is not exhaustive and there can clearly be some debate about whether the various symptoms are mutually exclusive (e.g., “ridiculing” and “being critical”). However, this does not reduce its value, which is primarily to alert us to the diverse range of phenomena through which resistance to change can be manifest.Why Do People Resist Change?Dislike of ChangeIt is very common to hear it said that the major impediment that managers face in introducing change is that people dislike change and will resist it. However, the difficulty with the blanket statement that “people dislike change” is that, if this is so, how do we explain that people sometimes welcome and even seek change? (See Table 6.5.) This diversity of responses suggests that it is unwise to assume that dislike of change is an innate human characteristic. Individuals vary considerably in their “dispositional resistance to change.”11TABLE 6.5A Personal View on ChangeSource: Maurer, 1996:23.
 
John Cage, the U.S. composer, pianist, and writer, provides an interesting perspective on the notion of innate dislike of change when he states, “I can’t understand why people are frightened of new ideas. I’m frightened of the old ones.”
 
163People that [sic] are high on dispositional resistance to change, which is conceptualized as a stable personality trait, are less likely to voluntarily incorporate changes in their lives, and when change is imposed upon them they are more likely to experience negative emotional reactions such as anxiety, anger and fear.12However, for the majority of people, it is contextual factors, that is, the specific characteristics of the specific change, that determine how they react.13Discomfort with UncertaintyAs individuals, we tend to vary in terms of how comfortable we are with ambiguity. Some of us revel in—or at least are not particularly perturbed by—“mystery flights” where the destination is unknown. However, others of us are uncomfortable in this situation, leading us to be resistant to change unless significant details of the journey and destination are revealed. For some, the uncertainty is magnified by a lack of confidence that they have the skills/capabilities needed in the post-change situation.To the extent that the strategic intent is not complemented by clarity as to expected actions, the chances increase that employees will fail to convert a change initiative into supporting action at their level of the organization. The key point here is that the lack of supporting action is not due to overt resistance or even apathy; it is due to the lack of a clear understanding of what such supportive action would “look like.”Perceived Negative Effect on InterestsThe readiness for change also will be affected by people’s perceptions of the likely effect of the change on their “interests,” a term that can cover a wide range of factors including their authority, status, rewards (including salary), opportunity to apply expertise, membership of friendship networks, autonomy, and security. People find it easier to be supportive of changes that they see as not threatening such interests and may resist those that are seen as damaging to these interests.14Attachment to the Established Organizational Culture/IdentityAs noted previously, one valuable “image of organizations” is of them as cultural systems that comprise beliefs, values, and artifacts, or, put simply, “the way we do things around here.”15 Readiness for change can be significantly affected by the degree of attachment to the existing culture (see Table 6.6). Reger et al.16 argue that organizational membersTABLE 6.6The FBI RevisitedSource: Brazil, 2007.
 
The FBI is under pressure to change, to become more skilled at preventing acts before they occur rather than solving them after the event (see Table 3.4). This requires a fundamental cultural change. FBI Director Robert Mueller has been communicating the need for such change widely and repeatedly within the organization. However, evidence on progress is mixed. Mueller’s challenge is that:To get the bureau’s thousands of people to think and act differently, he has to clear away old baggage and old ways of doing business, including a decades-old organizational practice of shoot-from-the-hip, small-picture strategic planning . . . [The FBI] possesses impressive pools of talent, determination, tools, and dedication. But it tends to be a risk averse, plodding, highly politicized work environment with a bunker mentality that doesn’t easily absorb outside criticism and input.17
 
164interpret change proposals from management through their existing mental models. In this regard, they note:A particularly powerful mental model is the set of beliefs members hold about the organization’s identity . . . Identity beliefs are critical to consider when implementing fundamental change because organizational identity is what individuals believe is central, distinctive, and enduring about their organization. These beliefs are especially resistant to change because they are embedded within members’ most basic assumptions about the organization’s character.18Reger et al.19 argue that two specific mental barriers tend to undermine the acceptance of change initiatives that are interpreted as inconsistent with the existing organizational identity. First, passive resistance (for example, apathy or anxiety) occurs when managers exhort subordinates to implement a change without first clarifying the connection between the change and some aspect of the organizational identity. According to Reger et al., such a connection is necessary “for deep comprehension and action.”20 Second, active resistance occurs when a change is interpreted as directly in conflict with key elements of the organizational identity. Greenwood and Hinings make a similar point when they argue that ways of organizing “become infused with a taken-for-granted quality, in which actors unwittingly accept the prevailing template as appropriate, right, and the proper way of doing things.”21 (See Table 6.7.)TABLE 6.7MoneyballSource: Wolfe, Wright, and Smart, 2006.
 
The New York Times bestseller Moneyball (Lewis, 2003) is a book about baseball. It describes how Billy Beane, the general manager of the Oakland Athletics, revolutionized Major League Baseball (MLB) by introducing a new approach (sabermetrics) to assessing the value of a player to a team. The established approach to assessing player talent favored future potential over past performance, whereas sabermetrics focused on the latter. Also, the established approach focused on the statistics of batting average (BA) and earned run average (ERA), whereas the new approach was based on the argument that different statistics such as on-base percentage plus slugging percentage (OSP) were better predictors of player performance. Although Beane introduced sabermetrics, the underlying concept was not his, writer Bill James having argued for three decades that research attested to its superiority as a basis for determining a player’s true value to a team. He also had been ignored for three decades.Beane’s application of the new approach was very successful, with the Athletics moving to near the top of the league’s standings despite being outspent by most of its competitors. As a result of this performance, the Oakland Athletics had approaches from many interested businesses and sporting bodies including teams from the NFL and MLB, Fortune 500 companies, and Wall Street firms. However, notable for their continuing lack of interest—even showing hostility to the new approach—were other MLB teams.According to Wolfe, Wright, and Smart, a key factor behind the MLB response was that the new approach challenged treasured orthodoxies; the MLB was very tradition-bound and characterized by deep respect for convention and precedent. Sabermetrics represented a challenge to this tradition for two reasons. First, it involved a questioning of the value of established predictors of performance. Second, whereas in the conventional approach field managers have significant control over talent selection and in-game tactics—an approach Wolfe, Wright, and Smart describe as a “field manager centric orientation”—sabermetrics emphasizes statistic-based decision making with a subsequent reduction in the importance of professional discretion. Not only was sabermetrics a challenge to long-held beliefs about which individual characteristics brought competitive success, it also constituted a threat to the job security of many in the industry—those who had been appointed to positions because of their knowledge of factors now given much less weight within the sabermetrics approach.
 
165Perceived Breach of Psychological ContractEmployees form beliefs as to the nature of the reciprocal relationship between them and their employer, that is, a “psychological contract.”22 A breach or violation of this contract occurs when employees believe that the employer is no longer honoring its “part of the deal.” In a variant on this theme, Strebel argues that employees and the organization for which they work can be seen as involved in a “personal compact” that defines their relationship.23 This compact may be explicit or implicit (or a mix of both) and involves three dimensions: formal, psychological, and social. The formal dimension covers such things as the specific task that a person is employed to do, how this relates to tasks carried out by others in the organization, how performance is assessed, and the associated level of remuneration. The psychological dimension—largely unwritten—relates to expectations in terms of trust, loyalty, and recognition. The social dimension refers to the espoused values of the organization. According to Strebel, where the proposed change conflicts with key elements of personal compacts, the outcome is likely to be resistance to change.24Lack of Conviction That Change Is NeededIt helps change advocates if the belief that change is needed is widespread within the organization. However, what seems obvious to some (“We must change!”) is not necessarily seen this way by others (“What’s the problem?”). There are many reasons that may account for complacency, including a track record of success and the lack of any visible crisis. People are likely to react negatively to change when they feel that there is no need for the change.25Lack of Clarity as to What Is ExpectedSometimes proposed changes, particularly of a strategic nature, are not complemented by clear information as to the specific implications at the level of action by individuals. Where this is the case, the chances increase that employees will fail to convert a change initiative into supporting action at their level of the organization. “A brilliant business strategy . . . is of little use unless people understand it well enough to apply it.”26 The key point here is that the lack of supporting action is not due to antagonism toward the proposed change; it is due to the lack of a clear understanding of what such supportive action would “look like.” Taking this as their starting point, Gadiesh and Gilbert argue the virtue of organizations having a “strategic principle”; that is, “a memorable and actionable phase that distils a company’s corporate strategy into its unique essence and communicates it throughout the organization.”27Belief That the Specific Change Being Proposed Is InappropriateThose affected by a proposed change are likely to form a view that it is either a good idea (“We needed to do something like this”) or a bad idea (“Whose crazy idea is this?” or “It’s a fad”). In turn, this view is likely to affect their readiness for change. As an advocate of a particular change, it is very easy to see those who support the change as perspicacious and to lament as myopic those who do not support the change. In this regard, it is not uncommon for those who are unsupportive to be given the pejorative label “resistant to change.” This is not necessarily an appropriate label given that the stance being judged is not a reaction to a proposal for change in a generic sense but to a proposal for a specific change.166In this regard, it is also worth considering that in some cases the “resistors” might be right; the proposed change may not be the great idea that its proposers assume. That is, sometimes “the voice of resistance can keep us from taking untimely or foolish actions.”28 The change also may be seen as inappropriate because of a fundamental difference of “vision.” Strategies are means to achieve objectives that flow from an organization’s vision. Change, as a part of the enactment of strategy, is therefore highly likely to be an arena of organizational life where divergent views over appropriate strategic direction will be manifest.Belief That the Timing Is WrongPeople may resist, not because they think that the proposed change is wrong—they may, in fact, like the idea—but because they believe the timing to be wrong.29 This may be due to change fatigue (as noted above) or it may be due to a completely different matter such as the view that the proposed change, if it were to occur at the proposed time, would have undesirable effects on key customers or employees or alliance partners—effects that would not eventuate if the timing were to be altered.Excessive ChangeStensaker et al.30 note the phenomenon of “excessive change,” which they characterize as having two forms. The first form occurs where an organization is pursuing several change initiatives at once and these are perceived by people in the organization as unrelated or, even worse, in conflict. The second form occurs where an organization introduces a series of changes and people in the organization feel that resources (including their time) are being reassigned to new initiatives before the earlier ones have been given sufficient atte

 

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