Explain the change process introduced by Kurt Lewin that can be useful in implementing strategies...
Explain the change process introduced by Kurt Lewin that can be useful in implementing strategies?and What is strategic change?
The changes in the environmental forces often require businesses to make modifications in their existing strategies and bring out new strategies. Strategic change is a complex process and it involves a corporate strategy focused on new markets, products, services and new ways of doing business. To make the change lasting, Kurt Lewin proposed three phases of the change process for moving the organization from the present to the future. These stages are unfreezing, changing and refreezing. (a) Unfreezing the situation: The process of unfreezing simply makes the individuals or organizations aware of the necessity for change and prepares them for such a change. Lewin proposes that the changes should not come as a surprise to the members of the organization. Sudden and unannounced change would be socially destructive and morale lowering. The management must pave the way for the change by first “unfreezing the situation”, so that members would be willing and ready to accept the change. Unfreezing is the process of breaking down the old attitudes and behaviours, customs and traditions so that they start with a clean slate. This can be achieved by making announcements, holding meetings and promoting the ideas throughout the organization. (b) Changing to New situation: Once the unfreezing process has been completed and the members of the organization recognise the need for change and have been fully prepared to accept such change, their behaviour patterns need to be redefined. H.C. Kellman has proposed three methods for reassigning new patterns of behaviour. These are compliance, identification and internalisation. • Compliance: It is achieved by strictly enforcing the reward and punishment strategy for good or bad behaviour. Fear of punishment, actual punishment or actual reward seems to change behaviour for the better. • Identification: Identification occurs when members are psychologically impressed upon to identify themselves with some given role models whose behaviour they would like to adopt and try to become like them. • Internalization: Internalization involves some internal changing of the individual’s thought processes in order to adjust to a new environment. They have given freedom to learn and adopt new behaviour in order to succeed in the new set of circumstances. (c) Refreezing: Refreezing occurs when the new behaviour becomes a normal way of life. The new behaviour must replace the former behaviour completely for successful and permanent change to take place. In order for the new behaviour to become permanent, it must be continuously reinforced so that this newly acquired behaviour does not diminish or extinguish. Change process is not a one time application but a continuous process due to dynamism and ever changing environment. The process of unfreezing, changing and refreezing is a cyclical one and remains continuously in action. must be continuously reinforced so that this newly acquired behaviour does not diminish or extinguish. Change process is not a one time application but a continuous process due to dynamism and ever changing environment. The process of unfreezing, changing and refreezing is a cyclical one and remains continuously in action.
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