PARA 13.2|IC 90, HRM One Liner|Chapter-6 | Making Change Happen

PARA 13.2|IC 90, HRM One Liner|Chapter-6 | Making Change Happen

Insurance exams offered by the Insurance Institute of India (III), consist of various papers either in Life or Non Life or Combined. Here we are providing ONE LINER IC 90, HRM Chapter 6: Making Change Happen for para 13.2 and III exam . These questions will be very helpful for upcoming promotional exam in 2020.

IC 90, Human Resource Management is a very important topic in insurance promotional exam. This IC 90, Human Resource Management paper comes in all GIPSA exams which makes it very important.

♦Chapter 6: Making Change Happen

The Process of Change

1)Reactive response Vs Proactive response

  • Reactive response: Change, implying adaptation and transformation, is intended to improve effectiveness. The need for improvement has to be felt before change can happen. Change would then be a response to satisfy the need. The need may be felt because of awareness that the effectiveness is being adversely affected. In that case, the response is called a reactive one – in the nature of problem solving.
  • Proactive response: The need may also be felt through observation that effectiveness has not yet been, but is likely to be, affected adversely. In that event, the response is to an anticipated situation, to a perceived threat. Such a response is called a proactive response, in the nature of preparing for a future possibility.
  1. Change process in an organisation

Organisations are open complex systems. The four major elements of an organisation are:

  1. If there is public criticism, there may be a tendency to ignore it by: attributing political motives or some such external factor, suggesting lack of
  • Genuineness and validity
  • Alleging ignorance on the part of the critics about the complexities and
  • Technicalities of the business (“they don‟t understand”)
  • Conceding partial justification but not affecting the total system (“making mountains out of molehills”)
  1. Managing change

Management of change is concerned with

  • Context of the organisation (outer and inner)
  • Content of the change
  • Process of implementing the change
  • Time or sequence

4.1) Context of the organisation: The context of the organisation, encompasses everything within and outside the organisation. If it is decided to introduce new technology at work, it is not enough to look at the availability of technology and the economics of it. The unions, government policy, political situation and popular opinion are also important.

4.1.1)The most common manifestations of drift are:

  • Strong and divergent departmental perspectives, leading to intergroup differences or conflict
  • Diffused controls from too many control points, having different thrusts
  • Low morale among the employees, manifesting in lack of concern for performance, poor inter-personal relationships, rigidity in styles of functioning and indifference to results
  • Employees having a feeling of being neglected Poor response to market demands.

4.2) Content of the change: The context determines the need for and direction of change. Content relates to the nature of change, what the end result after change should be. The content may relate to one or more of the elements in the system like

  • Goals or objectives Work group
  • Skills
  • Role relationships Technology
  • Service functions (inspection, planning, quality check)
  • Structure
  • Management styles
  • Information systems
  • Wages and rewards

4.3) Process of implementing the change: Changes take place in organisations through the same processes of unlearning and, moving to the new learning. Changes do not become effective and operational unless they are managed properly, during the “moving” stage and refreezing made to happen. Changes have to take place in the minds of people, before they become organisational phenomena.

4.4) Time and sequence: Some changes are quick to make and also quick to unmake. Such changes have short term implications. Some other changes have long term implications. They are slow to take roots. They touch basic structures and processes. Long term changes are normally part of “strategic” decisions. Strategic change is descriptive of the magnitude of alteration in culture, structure, product, market positioning, etc.

4.4.1) Strategic change

Just as a corporate plan gives rise to several smaller level plans, so also, strategic change generates several smaller order changes.

  • A change in the layout of an office is a change without long term implications.
  • A change in premises has longer term implications.
  • Purchase of a new building for office, has still longer term implications.
  • Construction of a commercial complex partly for office use and partly for letting out has more strategic implications.
  • Computerisation has very long term implications. That is part of strategic change in processing information. It takes time to become effective and is not easily reversible.

4.4.2) Features of elements are important: Change decisions must take into account the features (both human and non- human) of the elements of the organisation. The social dimensions are as important as the technical.

4.4.3) Institutionalised changes: When structural changes become operational, the changes are said to have been institutionalised. It is possible to implement structural changes by command from the management. When the relevant processes are understood and practiced as intended, they become routines. The changes are then said to have stabilised or internalised.

Management Development

5) Management development: Management development is future oriented. It is not limited to imparting knowledge and operational skills to employees. The focus will be on the parameters of good management like climate, culture, leadership, vision, strategies and so on. Effective managers should have analytical, human, conceptual and specialised skills. Management Development deals with such issues.

6) Quality of work life (QWL)

6.1) Quality of life (QL) does not depend on the availability of material comforts. Experience at work affects Quality of life. If experience at work is dissatisfying, the consequent emotional disturbances will carry through to other activities in the family and socially, affecting Quality of life.

6.2) Quality of Work Life (QWL)

The quality of the experience at work is Quality of Work Life.

Quality of life and Quality of Work Life affect and build on each other. Bad QWL leads to absenteeism, turnover, drugs, alcoholism etc. Good QWL leads to involvement, commitment and creativity at work. Management Development looks at QWL.

6.3) QWL programmes

QWL programmes generally focus on the environment within the organisation and include:

  • Basic physical concerns such as heating and air conditioning, lighting, safety precautions and
  • Factors relating to health like clean atmosphere, drinking water, relaxation, fatigue and stress.


6.4) Variables that affect QWL

QWL is, in the final outcome, the dependant variable. The variables that affect QWL are:

  • The individual, his needs, background etc.
  • Job characteristics, responsibility, skill levels, pressures etc.
  • Organisational factors, structure, support, communication, participation, reward systems etc.

6.5) Happiness and satisfaction

  • Happiness and satisfaction occur when the actual experience is consistent with what one would like to, or expects to, experience.
  • Events that are consistent with one‟s deepest desires (needs and values) are very satisfying and vice versa. Events that cause fright and anxiety make the experience unpleasant. Unpleasant experiences make for bad QWL.

6.6) Options available with management

Aware that human needs and aspirations are unique, they are changing and cannot be ignored, managements have the following options. Employ only such persons as will like an environment of rigid structures and task specialisation. Those who prefer security and low risk, could be happy in such conditions.

Redesign environment to have the attributes desired by the personnel within. This seeks to improve QWL because it:

  • Humanises the work
  • Provides opportunity to upgrade existing skills
  • Provides credible support for challenges and innovation encourages taking of responsibility
  • Recognises person‟s non-work role also

6.7) WELLNESS Programme

Programmes to improve QWL, also known as WELLNESS programmes take several forms like:

Improving motivation and potential through:

  • Job redesign
  • Job enrichment

Improving health through:

  • Yoga
  • Meditation
  • Regular physical check up bio feedback exercises

Reducing powerlessness through:

  • Various HRD practices
  • Training
  • Counselling

7) Stress: Stress is directly related to QWL. It is experienced by people, in the nature of tension or pressure. It generates a feeling of discomfort and sometimes even of helplessness. If not properly managed, stress can become the cause of debilitating illnesses, like peptic ulcer, colitis, insomnia, hypertension, diabetes, cardiac and kidney problems, etc.

7.1) Situations at work in which people may often get stressed are:

  • Inability to get results
  • Feeling pressurised by public / bosses / unions
  • Inadequate resources (powers, staff, time) to get work done Not being appreciated (lack of recognition)
  • Inequitable rewards (someone else gets better benefits) Too much work (overload)
  • Too little work (underload) Needs not met
  • Not being included (groups organized against self) Feeling unequal (in skills, status, qualifications, etc) Monotony, no challenge at work
  • Close supervision
  • Little opportunity for growth
  • No clear responsibility (role ambiguity) Role erosion (not allowed to do)
  • Role conflict (clashes with other jobs) Multiple demands from role set
  • Fear of failure

7.2) Some of the ways of coping with the stress and getting back to normal are:

  • Relax
  • Do anything that is pleasant enjoyable, hobbies, swimming, listening to music, socialise
  • Practice meditation and yoga
  • Share with someone who understands you (friends, spouse, parents, some colleagues, boss, if possible)
  • Delegate, reduce burden on self
  • Rationally modify perceptions to move from fear to challenge, from noticing the negatives to seeing the positives in the situation
  • Try being assertive (state one‟s position firmly) and avoid being submissive (kicking oneself) or aggressive (kicking others)

8) Methodologies: Management development focuses on individuals and more importantly on the organisation as a whole. All the methodologies of training referred to earlier in this chapter can be used for management development also. However, the emphasis being more on the group, sensitivity Training, OJT, case studies and in-basket exercises are likely to be more effective.

9) Career development: When employees join organisations at the start of their „careers‟, none of them are likely to have planned to stay in the same job for the rest of their lives. They expect to be able to learn and grow and move to different jobs that require higher level skills. Organisations, aware of these expectations, also chalk out „career paths‟ for employees to travel through. „Job rotation‟ referred to earlier, is a method adopted by organisations, whereby opportunities are given to the employees to demonstrate their potential for growth.

  • Thus career development programmes will not be applied to all employees uniformly.

Organisation Development, Climate, Culture

10) Organisation development is defined as a systematic, integrated, organisation- wide effort, planned and managed from the top, aimed to increase organisational effectiveness and health using knowledge of behavioural science.

The chief characteristics of organisation development are:

  • It is an organisation-wide educational strategy
  • The change is planned, usually with the help of a consultant It has long term implications
  • Behaviour science concepts are used
  • The focus is on both the formal and informal systems because both are integral to the working of the organisation
  • A climate of trust and support is created

11) Climate: The expression “climate” is used to refer to the ways in which members of a group experience the working environment. This will have an effect on the commitment of members to the group and therefore affect attitudes at work.

Some of the elements of climate are

11.1) Openness: In some groups, members do not feel comfortable to express themselves. There is a sensing that such expressions would not be welcome, that it is necessary to go along with what may be seen to be the views of some others, who may be perceived as dominating in the group. Openness is the extent to which members feel free to express themselves. Such behaviour comes out of perceptions, caused

  • Partly by observation and interpretation of events,
  • Partly by the comments of friends and some colleagues and
  • Partly by one‟s lack of confidence in being able to justify one‟s views

11.2) Defensiveness: This is the opposite of openness. A person is defensive when he is not ready and willing to listen to views contrary to his own. If he hears any such contrary comment, he is quick to justify and argue doggedly, for his stand. Non-defensive persons would be willing to explore the validity of the other points of view and then, if necessary, modify one‟s views.

11.3) Authenticity: This characteristic refers to the genuineness or the bonafides in the behaviour of the members. When people are not seen as authentic, there is suspicion and lack of trust. Ill-tempered persons can be authentic. Polite and sweet sounding persons are not necessarily authentic.

11.4) Belongingness: In some groups, the members would always feel like getting out as fast as possible. They might regret having got into this group. In other groups, members would feel bad to have to leave, when circumstances compel them to do so. In some groups, others would be expressing a desire to enter. This desire to come in or to get out is an indicator of the climate.

11.5) Role clarity: Sometimes two members may find that both of them had been doing the same job, unaware of the duplication. Such ambiguity of roles annoys, irritates and frustrates. On the other hand, role clarity helps build healthy climates.

11.6) Goal clarity: Clarity on the objectives or goals of the group helps to build up a healthy climate.

Rensis Likert had postulated that three sets of variables are relevant to determine climate.

  • The first are the causal variables, which are organisational structure, management policies, leadership styles, skills and behaviour.
  • The second are the intervening variables, which are caused by the first set and relate to climate factors.
  • The end-result variables are the result of the Intervening variables. They are productivity, costs, quality of work, etc.

12) Culture: The word „culture‟ implies an aggregate of values and practices and belief systems.

What and how people do at work, solving problems, making decisions, experimenting, innovating, conforming. On the aggregate, culture is the way they do it.

12.1) Characteristics of culture of an organisation

Some of the characteristics of culture of an organisation are as follows.

  • Individual Initiative, the extent to which it is expected, encouraged or tolerated
  • Risk Tolerance
  • Direction or closeness of supervision, and extent of freedom available at work
  • Integration or interdepartmental togetherness
  • Communication, referring to the flows and levels of secrecy and transparency

12.2) Manifestations of prevalent culture

There are organisations in which:

  • Figures and data on achievements are cooked up
  • Pleasing bosses is more important than pleasing customers
  • Status symbols like size of rooms, shape of chair, quality of visiting cards and similar other peripherals are more important than the substantial characteristics of work
  • Adherence to completion of paper work is more important than what is done in the field

12.3) Other dimensions of culture

Some other ways in which culture is identified include:

  • The power dimension, how it is distributed within, centralised or shared The risk avoidance or uncertainty tolerance
  • Individual / collective dimension, which shows tendencies towards or against team work and collaboration
  • The masculine / feminine dimension, which refers to the people – task orientation, assertiveness, differences

12.4) Cultural characteristics of successful companies

In 1986, Tom Peters and R. H. Waterman published „In Search of Excellence‟ in which they identified the following cultural characteristics of successful companies:

13) Stick to the knitting: They stick to what they know they can do well and do that well.

Values and Philosophy

14) Consistency and uniformity of behaviour become easier when the rationale for such behaviour is made known to the person concerned. These rationales are in the nature of values and philosophy of the company‟s management. When values and philosophy are known and shared by all, the emerging behaviour will tend to be appropriate to the ends determined by those values and philosophy.

15) Values and philosophy are reinforced (or denied) by the behaviours within the community.

  • If corruption is rampant in a community, it cannot be said that the community has a value that condemns corruption. Between
  • The preaching for a clean system
  • The law and the departments that seek to detect and punish the corrupt and the practice of corruption,
  • Members observe, perceive and understand what the operating philosophy

16) Respect and politeness to others are values

  • Managers who are impolite and disrespectful to their staff cannot expect the staff to be polite and respectful to the customers. One is unlikely to listen to others, unless one is listened to by others. It is said that people do unto others as others do unto them, not as they would like others do unto them. Employees tend to treat customers as they are themselves treated in the company.

17) Manifestations of values prevalent

There are organisations in which:

  • Figures and data on achievements are cooked up
  • Pleasing bosses is more important than pleasing customers
  • Status symbols like size of rooms, shape of chair, quality of visiting cards and similar other peripherals are more important than the substantial characteristics of work
  • Adherence to completion of paper work is more important than what is done in the field

18) The senior management determines the philosophy and values.

  • Values must be seen in practice. Only then will the rest of the organisation accept that these values are indeed intended to underlie the operations at all times and at all levels. If there is any difference between preaching and action, the messages from actions prevail.

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