Introduction to Leading Changes

Leading changes refers to introducing new plan and identification of fresh opportunities to expand the business and craft improvement in existing process of operation with co-ordination of all staff members. In organization leaders are key person who drive changes and play critical role in preparing people to accept changes for individual and organizational improvement. Leading changes is requirement of organization to sustain in the market position and develop business according to market and customer needs which plays significant role to design and develop business planning and process. Present report will analyze the need of strategic changes and planning of changing within Virgin group for developing business as well as adopting the new conditions of business.

Virgin group ltd. is a British multinational organization which deals in banking, aviation and retail sector business. Company is having business venture all around the globe and offering satisfactory services to customers. Virgin group led and controlled by Mr. Richard Branson who has started organization and establish it as worldwide brand. Richard has made much crucial decision for implementing changes according to need and situation.

In the next part report will develop plan to undertake successful completion of program and management of people to implement changes in organization to achieve the goals and objectives. In the end of the report it will explain potential benefits of changes and their impact on desired improvement.

STRATEGIC ANALYSIS

Background

The capabilities of an organization can greatly be enhanced by analyzing the changes and implementation of new process that will help management to achieve goals. It totally depends on leader and manager to explain the need of change which motivate and persuade employees to accept changes and craft improvement in individual and group performance (Deszca And Ingols, 2011). Virgin group has faced many conditions, in which organization made changes in operation and structure to meet requirements of customers as well as sustain position in the industry. Organization made changes after crisis of 2007 and establish itself to provide superior experience of flying. Virgin group managers and leaders always look to develop positive working environment by leading the changes to meet the requirements and develop effective plan for improvement. Every organization work with desire of growth in business in terms of share and size that driving the need of implementing changes (About Virgin group, 2015). Virgin group is having desire to expand the market that encourage management to apply changes which has provided positive impact on growth. In other words change management is the process, tools and technique to manage the people-side of change to achieve required and expected business outcome.

Changes and need of change

For developing organization and offer the satisfactory service, top management of Virgin group has implemented many changes which help organization to overcome the issues and manage improvement. The changes are led by founder of company Mr. Richard Branson who has empowered its employees to make changes to encourage morale of whole organization and other employees (Dunphy, Griffiths and Benn, 2007). However changes in structure, planning and policies work for organization but it cost company by turnover of employees, down fall in share prices and lack of communication with customers. In the current scenario Virgin group has resolved all issues and made improvement in business in all terms, still organization need changes according to following factors:

Political factors: After the crisis of 2007, government of UK has changed rules and regulations for developing business and allocation of resources. In order to meet the criteria of government legalization, Virgin group need to make changes in operations for flying and purchasing of crude oil. This will help management to develop sustainable plan to figure out the modifications.

Economical factors: This factor has significant impact on the services of organization. Top management need to implement changes in the financial planning to eliminate risk in the business. Virgin group need to forecast the economical condition to avoid the issues and determine the required changes (Bull and Brown, 2012). Changes in currency exchange and tax rate influencing the business planning of company, in spite of that, by taking proactive decision to make modification are required.

Social factors: Virgin group is looking to expand its business in other developing countries which is good for them and for UK. However company has good brand values but management needs to make changes in understanding social values and belief of potential areas of business to create place in new market and improve customer base.

Management style: In this factor, organization has advantage of having Richard as leader of Virgin group who has ability to motivate and understand the requirements of situation. In spite of that organization divided work in different departments which is leaded by managers (Langstrand and Elg, 2012). Management need to change the leadership style of managers to implement changes and achieve the goals of expanding business. In this particular area organization need changes, for that company consider the feedback of staff members.

Structure: To achieve the goals and develop effective plan for improvement, Virgin groups is following divisional structure of allocating role and responsibilities to staff members. In that, top management is lacking to communicate with lower level staff member which need to be changes. Management has to ensure that feedback and suggestion of each employee is valuable for achieving target.

Pricing policy: This is important area where management needs to make changes in pricing policies according to geographic and demographic segments as organization is operating business in different part of world and for all type of customers (Longo and Cristofoli, 2007). Virgin group need to implement changes according to business environment of particular location and market trends. It will help organization to expand business share and size.

Staffing: To craft improvement in operational function of Virgin group, management needs to make changes in selection and recruitment process of hiring new employees. In that company have to give preference to person who is knowledgeable about local condition and consider the values and culture (Rod, Ashill and Saunders, 2009).

PLANNING STAGE

In this section, management has to plan activities and operational functions to implement changes and make modification according to need. For effective planning, management of Virgin group can use following technique.

Sense of urgency: In order to develop plan for managing changes, organization need to craft significant opportunities to involve people who are willing to introduce change in process of work and operational activities. It help Virgin group to take proactive action for upcoming conditions and sustain position in industry (CADWELL, 1997).

Identification of need: In the planning of change management, it is essential for top management to identify the areas of weakness to develop plan for improvement . The key areas which need improvement are price, staffing and structure of organization that plays important part in development of business-environment.

Vision and initiative: To implement changes in identified areas, management needs to develop vision by including the facts that can help to get consideration of all staff members. In that managers and leaders of departments have to take initiative to undertake the new process and regulation which is planned to improve the condition of company.

Action to remove barriers: Leading changes is a term of removing the barriers in system and structure that pose threat to the achievement of vision (Collins and Porras,  1991). In planning of implementing changes, staff members and management of Virgin group need to eliminate the obstacles such as culture, economical and management style which might affect the planning of success.

Short-term goals: To analyze the impact of changes, Virgin group need to set- short term goals which will help organization to determine positive environment to lead the change. Organization need to produce, track, evaluate and celebrate small and large accomplishment to encourage the employees and implement change.

Stakeholder that influence the planning

To lead change and modification within organization, stakeholders plays critical role to determine the process and introduce new plan for improvement. In addition to that meeting and planning of events are the traditional method of involving internal and external stakeholder to improve their contribution in planning of change management and managing resources according to needs and market conditions (Sivakumar,& Sundara and. Krishnaswami, 2012). By performing that activity Virgin group can get the support of stakeholder to implement changes. In meeting management will closely interact with key members of staff and make appropriate decision for by involving stakeholder to led the changes. Following are the key stakeholders that involve in planning of change:

Government: Virgin group has significant contribution in growth of UK business industry and to expand the business organization need to implement changes according the rules and regulations proposed by the government (Connolly and Wall, 2011). Virgin group is performing business in retail and aviation sectors in which role of government will influence the planning of managing changes.

Suppliers: In order to propose changes, management need to consider the power of supplier which affect the business process and development of product and service. To leading the changes manager and management has to make strong relation with supplier that will help to apply the changes more effective manners.

Customer: These are key people which persuade organization to make changes and meet the requirements. Proper analysis of customer need and market trends will help Virgin group to design and develop plan for introducing and implementing changes. Identification of customer need and desire will help organization to addressing the changes in effective manner that will encourage sales (Filippov and Kalotay, 2011).

Employee: To apply changes according to need of conditions role of employee is critical as they are the initiator of modification and development of planning to meet the requirements of clients and customers. Organization has to provide proper training and information about the changes that required and going to be implement in future for betterment of Virgin group.

Models for changes

To lead the changes, manger and leaders of Virgin group can adopt different approaches and model that will help to manage changes more effective and efficient manner. Following are the appropriate model for crafting changes:

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Kotter's 8 step model:

This model is developed by John Kotter to analyze the conditions of changes and implement in an effective manner. This model provides easy step-by-step process to manage changes with the focus on preparing and accepting changes. According to Kotter model development of plan for managing changes, organization need to craft significant opportunities to involve people who are willing to introduce change in process of work and operational activities. To implement changes in identified areas, management needs to develop vision by including the facts that can help to get consideration of all staff members (Raileanu. 2013). Leading changes is a term of removing the barriers in system and structure that pose threat to the achievement of vision. In planning of implementing changes, staff members and management Through Kotter model organization can make transition easier and effective. To achieve the goals and develop effective plan for improvement, Virgin groups is following divisional structure of allocating role and responsibilities to staff members. In that process, top management is deficient to communicate with lower level staff member which need to be changes. To analyze the impact of changes, Virgin group need to set short-term goals which will help organization to determine positive environment to lead the change (Kotter’s Theory of Change. 2014). In spite of that, these steps take great deal of time and cost that affect the work process of organization.

McKinsey 7s model:

To mange changes in organizational process and operations management of Virgin group can use McKinesey 7s model. This model has following elements which will help company to identify and implement changes:

Shared values: According to model, management have to analyze the values and nature of business and particular areas where changes are required and important. In addition to that values of customer, employees and supplier need to be considerable as company willing to changes the business-environment.

Strategy: Company is following simple strategy, in which customer satisfaction is prior goal of organization. To implement change, management have to develop sustainable business strategy that include economical, cultural and political factors (Normandin, 2012).

Structure: To achieve the goals and develop effective plan for improvement, Virgin groups is following divisional structure of allocating role and responsibilities to staff members. This is working good for company and no need of change in organizational structure.

System: The system of virgin group is open ended in that each of employee can draft its feedback and suggestion about the facilities and process that proposed by top management. Organization leader Richard has provided new plan for leave and vacation of employee as they are free to take leave but they have to complete task for organization. This kind of change has encouraged and influenced employees to work with positive frame of mind as well as contribute in implementing changes.

Staff:Organization is having quality staff for performing task and operations to meet the expectation of employees (Bull and Brown, 2012). To implement changes organization need to work on increasing communication and co-ordination with staff members that will help manager and leaders to introduce changes in business-environment and contribute in development of Virgin group.

Skills: This is an important element to led the changes which give power to control and deal with the situations. If manager of departments are skilled enough to propose changes in effective manner will help organization and employees to understand changes in process and develop quality to deal with modification (unphy, Griffiths and Benn 2007).

THE PEOPLE

3.1Managing and leading people in change program

The restructuring of organization is imperative task by which firm can be able to cope up with changing scenario. Here, managing and leading people in the direction of change become crucial part for management of Virgin group. It is because; general workers resist changes at the workplace. It forces workers to come out from comfort zone and adopt new ways to work. In order to manage change, effective communication procedure takes place by which firm can be able to make people agree for the same (MacIntosh and Beech, 2012). For this purpose, management of Virgin group design new reward system and encourage employees to work with integrity. It facilitates organization to recover their position and come in the marketplace with new updated products and services by which they can attract or retain their old buyers.

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For mange people, acquire, Bond and Understand and equality are the key drive thereby firm can be able to lead workforce in the direction of change. For acquiring employees, effective remuneration policies and increment in their salaries as well as bonuses prove to be effective. It contributes towards retaining employees and making effort for implementing changes at workplace (Hayes, 2010). Further, bonding can be ensured with the help of changing cultural values for implementing changes. Here, workers are invited to share their ideas in monthly or weekly meeting by which they can resolve problems that are being faced at workplace in an effectual manner. Here, firm is changing its overall structure after facing problem of financial crisis (Hughes, 2006). Owing to this, employee's authority, responsibilities and management structure also changes to a great extent.

Due to this, management defines new roles and responsibilities and communicates the same to workers so as to motivate them for performing better. In addition to this, several types of strategies are adopted by Virgin group for managing performance of workers such as 360 degree appraisal and more transparency for reviewing performance (Stephen, 2007). It facilitates to manage all the business activities in an effectual way so as to deliver good quality of services to large number of people. Here, management or immediate supervisors of Virgin group also allocate resources among workforce for increasing their attention towards work. At the initial stage, organization also makes sure about daily meeting and personal meeting with workforce at workplace. It facilitates to resolve their issue and motivate them to make effort in the direction of growth in Virgin group (Leban, Klein and Stone, 2005). Moreover, firm need to make effort for aligning corporate goals and culture so that workers can cope up with changing scenario. It also assist workforce to deliver good quality of services to large number of buyers. It facilitates employees to implement change in less time and create competitive edge of firm in the marketplace. Here, Virgin group make employees to agree regarding need of change so that worker willingly face changes and contribute towards achieving long as well as short term objectives of company (Carr, 2002). It proves to be effective to implement change and enables organization to expand at marketplace with new updated products and services.

Identifying the potential barriers

Managing people is the hard task at the time of implementing changes at workplace. Here, management of Virgin group faces several types of barriers impede performance of company to a great extent. The potential barriers in restructure of Virgin Group are described as follows-

Resistance of change-It is the most important factors that serve as potential barrier in implementing changes at workplace or organization. Here, workforce want to work in their comfort zone and do not like to adopt new ways to work Grant and et.al., 2005(). It creates problem for management to recover position of company and increase overall rate of return of the same. Further, negative motivation such as lower increment and no provision for incentive forces workers to resist changes.

Fear of losing job-Workers of Virgin group does not like to implement change because of fear of losing their job. Generally they like to avoid new things just because of fear of financial security. It does not allow them to discover new ways to do work and increase overall rate of return (Harris and Crane, 2002). Further, changing management structure creates confusion among people and they may also not be well informed about their roles and responsibilities. Owing to this, they do not accept changes. It takes high time to recover position of organization and achieving long as well as short term objectives of Virgin Group.

Cultural clashes-Culture is the prime factor on which organizational success depends and integrates all employees. Due to changes in the management structure, Virgin group need to make changes in the organizational culture and respect diversity of culture that exist among workers. It helps to promote teamwork and also assist workforce to deliver good quality of services large number of people (Nussbaumer and Merkley, 2010). Because of changes, management invites cultural conflict because they also have to acquire more employees who can contribute towards achieving objectives of company. It is because; many of workers leave as they are not able to manage the work.

Difficulty in performance assessment-After facing crisis, organization is not able to maintain its productivity. Due to this, firm makes many changes; one of them is changing organization structure in order to increase productivity. Here, future uncertainty sets limit for management and it is not able to assess its progress after implementation. It creates fear among management in implementing changes at the workplace.

Ineffective style of leadership-It is the most important factors which creates barrier in implementing changes at workplace of Virgin Group. Here, democratic style of leadership does not force workers to adopt changes in less time. In such situation people try to ignore changes and also try to be in their comfort zone. Further, people start to avoid changes and want to persist the old way to do work (Smith, 2011).

Ineffective teams-Here, ineffective teams consist of those people who does not interact with each other and concentrate on their own task only. It creates dissatisfaction among change when management communicates about implementation of change plan. It generates need for transformation of abilities and knowledge as to ensure smooth flow of production.

Process to overcome changes

The aforementioned barriers can hamper performance of organization to great extent. It creates barrier for management to implement changes at the workplace and recover position of firm in the marketplace. Owing to this, change curve is taken into account and management will adopt the same way in order to ensure about successful implementation of changes. It is explained as follows-

Denial-It is the first and foremost stage where employees generally deny for the changes. They like to be in their comfort zone so they can be able to achieve their targets within stipulated time span. Further, aforementioned reasons forces workers to deny for the changes (Franckeiss,2012). In such situation firm need to communicate with customer with direct interaction so as to make them agree for the changes. It facilitate to increase overall rate of return and also increase production of the firm.

Anger-It is the next stage where employees start becoming aggressive and avoid changes it a great extent. Here, workforce cannot tolerate the prevailing changing pattern of work and also great changes in the overall organizational structure (The Change Curve, 2015). It create dissatisfaction among them. In such circumstances, management can enroll themselves with employees so as to understand them about need of changes and its importance at workplace. It assist workforce to re-think on the changing plan and make effort in order to accept the same. Further, workers are given enough time to understand the changing scenario so as to engage them in the decision making process (MacIntosh and Beech, 2012). Along with that, information communication work well that enables employees to make understand the need of changes.

1. Exploration-Here, the step begin for accepting the changes. At this phase employees of Virgin Group try to compromise in the complex situation and try to manage their work for getting the favorable outcome. It is like testing of new work environment where workers are provided full support. Further, workers are properly guided by their immediate supervisors and they communicate about time line of the project. It enables personnel to accept changes that leads to successful implementation of change plan so as to deliver good quality of services to large number of buyers (Stephen, 2007). In addition to this, workers of company move in the direction of growth so they can be able to achieve long as well as short term objectives of Virgin Group. Here, on the basis of situation, management can also adopt autocratic style of leadership thereby employees are given order. It enables them to complete their given task and make effort for performing given task. It assist firm to create competitive edge in the marketplace and recover losses of the same in short span of time. At this stage, workers are provided training and simpler way to complete their task. Further, employees are provided training that can be helpful in managing their daily work and implementing change. It facilitate to enhance their knowledge and skills that increases their attention towards work.

Acceptance-It is the end process of change where all workers accept changes and make habit of the same. Here, they posses the thought that changes will last forever and workers have to work in the same direction. Under this, employees are also rewarded for their achievements. It facilitate to boosts their morale and they can be able to achieve their set target within stipulated time (Leban, Klein and Stone, 2005). In order to motivate employees, management create good feedback mechanism and set targets for them. Accepting the changes is the imperative task by which workers motivate towards doing good and this motivation comes from appreciation and celebrating success of personnel.

BENEFITS

Benefits of change plan

The change plan has several benefits for the Virgin Group by which management can be able to deliver good quality of services to large number of buyers. It bring improvement in the present working situation and also facilitate to increase productivity of firm. With the help for change management plan, firm can easily manage its financial performance and can provide updated services to buyers. It also enables employees to work with integrity and make effort in the direction of growth and success of firm. Further, change curve enables firm to manage anger and denial stages of employees and guide them in an effectual manner so as to bring improvement in the working of firm (Harris and Crane, 2002). Here, changing management structure prove to be effective for organization as whole. It facilitate all employees to work with integrity.

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Further, it improves performance of workers and contribute towards achieving long as well as short term objectives for Virgin Group. It is also helpful for increasing sales turnover and expansion business at another geographical area. On the other hand, change plan increasing potential of workers so they can cope up with changing scenario. It assist management of firm to give higher er level of satisfaction among employees. Further, it facilitate to cater need of different stakeholders such as shareholders, employees, customers as well as suppliers and other parties. It ensure speed up in the flow of production and also motivate workers to work with integrity. It assist employees to work with zeal and enthusiasm so as to increase overall rate of return of Virgin Group (Nussbaumer and Merkley, 2010). It can be critical evaluated that, change plan create huge cost for the organization but gives long run benefits. It decrease profitability of organization at the initial stage. Moreover, with the help of change plan, employees ensure about continuous learning by which management provides time to time training for workers. It serve as sources of continuous learning that aid to keep employees update.

The improvement can be known by the help of increased productivity as well as retention of workers. It facilitate to create competitive edge of firm in the marketplace and also increases overall rate of return of the same. On the other hand, increase in the number of customer and increasing market share are the effective indicator for the improving performance of Virgin Group. It enables workforce to make effort for the expansion of firm and also deliver good quality of services to large number of buyers. Further, employees retention is also the good sign by which Virgin Group can assess the impact of change plan (MacIntosh and Beech, 2012). It can be critically evaluated that, change forces many of employees to leave the job. It increases attrition rate that may have adverse impact on the firm. Due to this, organization have to make extra efforts for acquiring competent personnel that again create cost and decreases overall rate of return of Virgin Group.

CONCLUSION

From the report, it can be concluded that, change management facilitate to bring improvement in the present working of organization. It assist management to increase overall rate of return and plan for the expansion of firm. It can also be said that, at the initial stage people like to resist change but after implementation of lucrative policies such as incentives, reward systems, employees make effort in relation implementing changes. Further, Kottler's B step model also prove to be effective for increasing overall rate of return of firm so that organization can recover its position and create strong position in the present as well as new marketplace.

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