Mapping the Different Streams of Change LiteratureHiggs, M. and Rowland, D. (2005), All Changes Great and Small: Exploring Approaches to Change and its Leadership, Journal of Change Management, Vol 5, No 2, pp. 121-151.
The Uniform Approach / Change as a Predictable PhenomenonThe three-phase model of change (adapted from Lewin, 1951)This view of change encompasses assumptions thatchange, because of its linearity, is a relativelystraightforward process and that it can (and should) bedriven from the top of the organization and beimplemented uniformly according to a detailed changeplan Kotter, J. P. (1995) Leading change: why transformation efforts fail, Harvard Business Review,
The Uniform Approach / Change as a Complex Phenomenon There are two basic theories of change: (1) Theory E change emphasizes economic value – as measured only by shareholder return (“hard” approach) (2) Theory O change: a “softer” approach – focuses on developing corporate culture, and human capability, patiently building trust and emotional commitment The key is to carefully and simultaneously balance these very different approaches. Although seeing change as a more complex process this „school‟ retains the assumption that change can be implanted uniformly throughout theBeer, M. & Nohria, N. (2000) Breaking the Code of Change (Boston, MA: Harvard Business School Press). organization.
Change as Predictable / Disseminated and Differentiated Approach (COMPLICATED SYSTEM) Not Transformation but “Profound Change” requires incorporating both an internal shift in people‟s values, aspirations, and behaviors, and external changes in the fundamental thinking patterns of organizations that underlie organizational choices of strategy, structures, and systems. Although seeing change as a more complex process this „school‟ retains the assumption that change can be implanted uniformly throughout the organization. The general seat of change is set at the top of the organization and agents throughout the organization are equipped with a range of „change tools‟ which they can determine how to use in pursuit of the overallSenge, P. Kleiner, A., Roberts, C., Ross, R., Roth, G., and Smith, B. (1999). The Dance of Change. Thechallenges of sustaining momentum in learning organization, Doubleday, New Your, NY. direction.
Change as Complex / Disseminated and Differentiated Approach (COMPLEX SYSTEM) Complicated systems are rich in detail whereas complex systems are rich in structure. Jaworski and Scharmer (2000) identified core practices for success within this emergent view of change, which are: (1) Observing: seeing reality with new eyes. (2) Sensing: turning the observed reality into emerging patterns that inform future possibilities. (3) Presencing / Envisioning: crystallizing vision and intent. (4) Executing: acting in an instant to capitalize on new opportunities The seven practices are all aspects of the same single movement. That movement takes place on many levels and can be viewed from three perspectives: process (from felt sense to embodiment); person (the leader‟s journey); and principles (the power of intent, mindfulness, and love). Interventions from this perspective tend to recognize that change is a „messy‟ rather than planned activity. They tend to beJaworski, J. & Scharmer, C. O. (2000) Leadership in the new economy. Sensing and actualizing emergingfutures, Working Paper, Society for Organisational Learning. concerned with building relationships and a container for change.