One of the most beneficial exercises in a course exploring leading strategic change is to develop a plan for change that allows you the opportunity to create connections between your personal view of change within your organization and the theories and models in the course. The nature of leading strategic change is recognition, analysis, and resolution. We often don’t make a decision regarding change in a systematic process that allows for long-term success. That is, change models are discussed “after the fact” as we begin to see the actual implications of the failure to successfully change.
Starting the change process requires that a manager/leader analyze the internal and external environments. This analysis helps identify the need for change. The need may be because of poor internal performance leading to lost customers and profits. The analysis may also highlight an opportunity in the external environment that could create a sustainable competition advantage if the organization changes quickly.
At the end of this course, you are required to complete a Final Project that focuses on a change that your selected organization should make based on your analysis.
Note to Student: You will need to do research to complete this project. Be sure to document your sources properly in APA style—do not merely copy tables or material from other sources and present them as your own. Also, Wikipedia is not an acceptable research source. You will be penalized for using it.
This Final Project requires that you:
- Use the organization in which you currently work or one with which you are very familiar (e.g., a volunteer organization).
- Apply the analytical tool PEST to evaluate the external sources for change and conduct an analysis of internal performance to identify problems that should be addressed resulting in a change initiative. Note: The internal analysis may be focused on your work unit or area within your organization that you are most familiar.
- Using the information from the external and internal analysis, choose a change that you believe your organization should make. Once identified, analyze the change using the following three models. Note: Make it a strategic change that would increase the company’s sustainable competitive advantage.
- Use the typology of organizational change to define the change and set the scope.
- Discuss the locus for change.
- Analyze the situation using all of the analysis methods listed below and include the analysis in your report. Hint: All of these methods are clearly explained throughout the text. You may include other theories/models as appropriate.
- SWOT Analysis
- Force-Field Analysis
- Stakeholder Grid
- Assess the Quality of Organizational Learning
- Evaluate the importance of the leader as a change agent in constructing effective change initiatives.
- Using this analysis, construct a change plan.
- Address the challenges to change and how you would seek to minimize or eliminate them as the change is implemented.
The paper should be 8–12 pages in length.
If you have questions about the requirements of the project, be sure to discuss them with your mentor well in advance of the final submission. Consult the Course Calendar for the due dates.
TWO STEP REQUIREMENTS
You will complete your Final Project in two steps:
Step 1: Select the change and the organization
This should be accomplished by finishing Written Assignment 1. Refer to Written Assignment 1 in Module 2 for the requirements and the Course Calendar for the due date. Written Assignment 1 provides the foundation for the Final Project. The purpose of Step 1 is for the mentor to ensure that you have selected a change that is appropriate and not too broad or too narrow for the course project. Please note that you are free to discuss the change idea with your mentor before the due date.
Step 2: Final Project Paper
Your final paper is due on the last day of the semester.