Change is unavoidable in today’s business environment as many factors could spur organizational change. While these changes may seem disruptive at first, they come with their fair share of learning opportunities. The COVID-19 crisis has forced organizations to change from the more traditional forms of office nine-to-five work to a remote work kind of arrangement. Studies show that remote work possesses great potential in the long-term future, and prudent managers should try to tap its benefits (Ozimek, 2020). For the National Latino Behavioral Health Association (NLBHA) to perform its objective well, a transition from office to remote work is necessary. A change management model can guide leaders in this process. This paper shows how the model can be used to help the transformation of NLBHA from traditional office work to remote work.
8-Step Change Management Model and Its Applicability
Create a Sense of Urgency
For NLBHA employees and other staff to accept the deviation from their normal way of functioning, a sense of urgency has to be installed in them by the group’s management. In this stage of creating change, employees are informed by the management that the initiative is essential (Stouten et al., 2018). All top, middle, and lower managers need to communicate clearly and honestly to make all employees understand how critical the issue is to the organization. The workforce has to be told about the current office system’s weaknesses and threats. Then the strengths and opportunities associated with remote work, including the leaders’ reasoning, have to be well communicated.
Build the Coalition for Change
Building coalitions for change brings trust and unity, thus empowering the change process. Strong guiding coalitions promote strong culture change in almost all institutions, hospitals included (Bradley et al., 2017). A strong guiding coalition should be composed of both managers and key employees. However, a level 5 leader is always needed; for example, when one mentions Wal-Mart’s ascension from small-fry to industry leader Sam Walton comes into change (Kotter, 2012). In changing NLBHA from the traditional office setting to remote work, vice president Israel Martinez would be a reliable member of the guiding committee due to his 40-year experience in social work
Clarify the Change Imperative
The team tasked with ensuring a smooth transition should consider the problems likely to be faced, the organization’s vision, mission, and objectives. Changing from having employees operate in a central office controlled by the employer to a location where they find it convenient to operate comfortably. Communication between different parties is also needed, and a clear written guideline showing what will be expected from every employee is essential.
Assessing the Change Imperative
NLBHA’s current work system of traditional office work poses a significant number of threats. First, COVID-19 puts the organization at risk because the office space is limited. Second, budget allocations to this association are limited, and thus only a small number of staff, less than ten, is normally at work at a time. Nonetheless, the department is known to offer virtual work and thus could easily transition to remote work.
Developing a Plan for Change
In developing a change plan, it is critical to consider the organization’s goals, visions, and mission. This change plan should be set out in a manner that is easy to follow by all employees. Activities that each worker will be expected to accomplish in a particular time frame should be set out and appraisal techniques established. The methods of ensuring that the institution’s culture is maintained when people are working from home should be analyzed and implemented.
Dealing with the Human Factors
A great vision for change can serve its purpose even when a few key stakeholders understand it. However, some resistance will crop up among members unless they all agree that it is important to the organization. Thus, staff must be involved in the transition to remote work. Their attitudes towards the new work structure should be analyzed, and new skills needed for one to work from home should be taught to all staff. The NLBHA has to create incentives for employees who achieve certain remote work goals to ensure optimal output.
Acting Quickly and Revising Frequently
Creating a sense of urgency and setting short-term goals that lead to instant wins could make adopting remote work in NLBHA quick and effective. Employees ought to be empowered to act quickly in ways consistent with the vision and, in doing so, develop new ideas and ways of working that come out of their understanding of the change (Stouten et al., 2018). The remote work strategies must be easy to change and not involve long bureaucracies which slow down the process. Timetables are also important in ensuring structured remote work, but they should be flexible.
Evaluating and Celebrating the Change
Once the transformation is completely done, the change must be anchored into the team’s culture. The results achieved by the new model ought to be constantly evaluated, and areas that still need more improvements or change should be identified. Managers have to be careful not to celebrate too early the success of their leadership change as this could lead to a reversal of old habits. In the case of remote work in NLBHA, the workers effectively go beyond the scope of their duties to ensure the organization’s goals are celebrated and compensated.
Justification for the Inclusion of the Two Leaders in the Answer
The CEO and founder of Walmart and Sam’s Club, Sam Walton, has been included in this answer because the single Handley pioneered Walmart’s change from a small eatery to a big corporation. Without constant change guided by the eight principles listed above, organizations cannot grow. Walton proved this passion through his unwillingness to accept the status quo, which helped him and his corporation be one of the richest in the world.
Vice president of NLBHA Israel Martinez is included in the qualities needed in a leader to spearhead the guiding coalition. Born in New York City, he has over 40 years of experience in social work. He is also a former statesman who provided individual and family counseling and other psychotherapeutic work. He has experience in psychiatric services and a degree in Psychology. Mr. Martinez is known to be experienced in multicultural counseling, chairing a committee for the advocacy of services to Latino communities. These skills make him a capable member to spearhead change in work structure in an organization that deals in matters in which he has vast experience.
The Process to Access Success
To assess the success of the change, one should first consider if they and the rest of the employees are enthusiastic about the change. The committee set to guide the change should then be analyzed, and the views of all people towards it analyzed. Positive views would demonstrate that the change is successful. All employees ought to understand and agree with the vision and strategy of the organization in implementing the change. The success of all people who work remotely should also be analyzed periodically, and short-term wins recorded. Additionally, it is imperative to anchor change into everybody’s culture, and remote work should then reduce the operation costs of the organization while serving as many people as possible.
Recommendations for Enhancing Leadership in NLBHA
When an organization grows, remote leaders are faced with the challenge of monitoring the employees. Thus, leaders should motivate and encourage honesty and hard work among the staff members. They should always encourage employee behavior critical for innovation (Kremer et al., 2019). Having the work done quantifiably could help the leaders decide how to allocate incentives. Leaders in NLBHA can be enhanced by having executive members take courses on leadership, especially those that involve remote work.
Recommendations for Including Leadership Content in Education
Leadership content in education is beneficial and should be included in education since leadership is crucial to an organization’s success. All students aspiring to be leaders must understand the methods of communicating effectively, implementing change, and making it stick. Empowered leaders produce an empowered workforce and thus a great organization. Implementation of leadership in education can be done by having students take internships in which they will be directly linked with executive members of an organization. Doing assignments that students assume to be leaders can also be used to train them.
Leadership in social work practice is essential since, without it, the rest of the organization can fall into the complacency of having the status quo. As discussed above, a good leader should possess a sixth sense of smelling threats and acting to prevent certain threats such as the COVID-19 threat. Additionally, they ought to be the final decision-makers whenever conflicting arguments arise as organizations must choose their next moves. A successful leader can initiate change, and if the method of enforcing it is right, the change will occur to the satisfaction of their wishes. Models of change such as the eight-step change management model guide leaders to implement new plans.
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