Change Readiness and Needs Assessment Audit for LLC
Change is an integral part of an organization’s growth. This report reviews the readiness of the United States employees to adopt the change in operations. The report discusses the areas in need of change at the U.S branch, employees’ confidence in the change management process, opportunities to increase change readiness and trust at the U.S branch, and cultural considerations that may be limiting the employees of the U.S branch from adjusting to the Singaporean headquarters standard operating procedures (SOPs).
Visual Analysis of Areas In Need Of Change
Appraisal, Job-Role Stagnation, and Promotion or Recognition
Apathy or Disinterest Regarding the Vision, Mission, and Values of the Organization
Lack of Trust in Managers, Especially Senior Leaders
Impressions about the Organization’s Attitude to Inclusion and Diversity
Justification of Data Points
|Performance management system
|A sound performance management system will promote proper employee appraisal by monitoring employee performance.
|Employees will have various roles and responsibilities, thus preventing job-role stagnation.
|Promotion or recognition
|Regarding employees through benefits demonstrates recognition and shows that a company values employees.
|Performance rating can guide the organization in deciding who to promote.
|Apathy or disinterest regarding the vision, mission, and values of the organization
|Onboarding familiarizes employees with the organization’s mission, vision, and values (Blount, 2022).
|Employee involvement in decision-making
|Employee involvement in decision-making creates a sense of belonging, thus increasing interest in the organization’s vision, mission, and values.
|Lack of trust in managers, especially senior leaders
|An organizational structure defines how employees and senior leaders interact, thus creating a foundation for trust.
|Communication channels influence transparency in communication, thus influencing trust.
|Impressions about the organization’s attitude to inclusion and diversity
|Cultural awareness makes employees understand and appreciate each other’s cultural differences.
|Diversity and inclusion in hiring
|Diversity and inclusion in hiring demonstrate that an organization has a positive attitude to inclusion and diversity.
Employee Confidence in Change Management Practices
Employee Confidence in Company Leadership
Based on the company’s leaders’ self-evaluations, employees have high confidence in the company’s leadership. This is evident in the employee’s commitment to realizing the vision set by their leaders and meeting specified goals and objectives. Employees are also willing to learn from their leaders. For instance, one of the employees learned more about telesales from the sales manager, which contributed to improved sales management.
Urgency for Change at Employee and Leadership Levels
Change at employee and leadership levels is urgently needed to enable employees at the U.S. branch to complete assigned tasks as required. Change at the leadership level will guide the company on the change that should be implemented at the employee level based on new roles that may be introduced and the relationship between employees and leaders. For example, communication strategies may be changed to facilitate the flow of information within the organization so that operations flow as required.
Team Leads’ Role in Creating Change Mindset
Managers as a Bridge
Managers would serve as a bridge between the senior leaders and the frontline staff by promoting responsibility and ownership mentality among frontline staff. According to Husser (2015), managers are at an intermediate level in an organization, thus moderating the interaction between employees and managers by ensuring that the interests of managers and employees are met. Managers should create insights about the change for the frontline staff and the organization to reduce resistance to change. They should also inform senior managers about the concerns frontline staff could have about the change and ensure they are addressed.
Readiness to Take Ownership
The managers at the U.S. branch are ready to take ownership of the proposed change because they have goals to improve the organization’s performance. For example, the sales manager intends to improve cross-department communication. The finance manager also has plans to align accounting and finance programs to the organization’s strategic plan and develop action plans to support the organization’s success.
Leadership Impact on Change Readiness
Leadership styles and power distribution impact the behavior of employees, thus impacting change readiness. For example, leaders who give employees autonomy increase change readiness because employees develop a sense of belonging and feel valued because they are allowed to implement their ideas to achieve the desired change. Leadership styles such as autocratic leadership give leaders more power, limiting change readiness because the change is imposed on employees without considering their feedback or opinion about the change. Participative leadership, on the other hand, encourages change readiness by allowing employees to participate in decision-making.
Opportunities to Increase Change Readiness
Differences in Change Acceptance
Some employees are more accepting of change, while others might be more reluctant due to differences in how the change influences their interests. For instance, employees may resist change if it increases the chances of reduced pay, while those who benefit from the change are more accepting. Employees might also be reluctant to embrace change if they do not understand it. Therefore, it is essential to explain all critical aspects of a change, such as who it impacts, how it affects it, and those involved in its implementation.
Reasons for Resistance to Change
The Forms of Resistance Grid explains the common reasons for resistance to change by explaining the different behaviors adopted by individuals in the change implementation process. The primary forms of resistance in the U.S. branch are upward dissent and peer-focused dissent. Based on the exit interviews, the company has a top-down management style where high-level managers make strategic decisions, and the lower staff implement them. Therefore, employees may influence a high-level manager through a third party to get their concerns addressed. Peer-focused dissent may arise from employees inciting one another because they are already angry because the organization expects them to understand the Singaporean SOP, yet they are not trained.
Cultural Barriers to Change
Considering Cultural Dimensions
Considering culture using Hofstede’s cultural dimensions model is vital for the U.S. branch and the Singaporean headquarters because it will enable leaders to understand employee behavior, thus predicting resistance to change. This information can be used to design effective change implementation strategies and design the change in a way that accommodates the employees’ cultural values, norms, and beliefs.
Cultural Analysis Model
Hofstede’s model helps analyze cultural differences by demonstrating the impact of a society’s culture on its members’ values and how they relate to behavior (Dartey-Baah, 2013). For example, people from cultures with short-term orientation prefer maintaining their traditions, while those from long-term orientation cultures are more receptive to change.
How Cultural Differences Impact Change Initiatives
Cultural differences impact change initiatives by creating conflicts that may delay the change implementation process. For example, individuals from cultures with high uncertainty avoidance and those from cultures with low uncertainty avoidance may conflict due to the approach to implementing change. This is mainly because individuals from cultures with low uncertainty avoidance do not embrace drastic change. In contrast, those from cultures with high uncertainty avoidance have high-risk tolerance and are not reluctant to embrace drastic change.
How Cultural Differences Impact Communication and Business Practice
Individualism can affect the cross-cultural communication and business practice differences among American and Singaporean employees by influencing the exchange of ideas and collaboration in implementing them. Singaporean employees are individualistic, while American employees are American, thus creating a challenge in interaction among them because American employees are more likely to work independently while Singaporean employees embrace teamwork. Power distance will also affect cross-cultural communication and business practices of the American and Singaporean employees because Americans are less dependent on hierarchy and may ignore the chain of command when passing information in the organization. In contrast, Singaporeans value hierarchy and may, therefore, prefer following a chain of command in communication and decision-making.
Change in a cross-cultural environment is complex because every culture’s cultural values and norms must be considered. Therefore, organizations need to conduct a cultural analysis to determine the impact of culture on employee behavior and how the behavior might impact change.
Blount, J. (2022). Betting on Talent: Examining the Relationship between Employee Retention and Onboarding Programs. Engaged Management Review, 5(3). https://doi.org/10.28953/2375-8643.1083
Dartey-Baah, K. (2013). The Cultural Approach to the Management of the International Human Resource: An Analysis of Hofstede’s Cultural Dimensions. International Journal Of Business Administration, 4(2). https://doi.org/10.5430/ijba.v4n2p39
Husser, J. (2015). Oblivion and the role of middle managers in an organizational change. Management International, 19(1), 31-42. https://doi.org/10.7202/1028488ar
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You have been contracted as an HR consultant by a U.S. LLC in Wilmington, Delaware, to solve their internal issues. This U.S. LLC is a branch of a Singaporean software solutions provider with 140 employees and $20M revenue per year. The CEO of the Singaporean headquarters wants to open new markets in the United States, gain access to new customers, diversify risk, leverage resources, and increase profits. To meet these goals, she tasked a VP to establish and take charge of the U.S. branch.
Unfortunately, the newly formed U.S. branch has been facing several problems from the beginning.
- Employees at the call center and the sales and marketing division are disengaged and emotionally tired as a result of contradictory communication between the branch’s leadership and the leadership at the Singaporean headquarters.
- The branch team members feel frustrated and undervalued as a result of conflicting feedback from their VP and management team.
- Messages from leadership lack consistency, especially regarding policies and practices related to human resources.
- There is no training for team members.
- Communication problems between the Singaporean headquarters and the U.S. branch are resulting in low employee morale.
Overall, the standard operating procedures (SOP) followed successfully at the headquarters office in Singapore could not be replicated at the U.S. branch. As a result, the CEO’s vision of successfully furthering expansion into the U.S. market remains unfulfilled.
Perform the change readiness/needs assessment audit for the U.S. branch and submit a report of your findings to the VP in the course scenario. As the HR consultant, this would help you identify the readiness of the U.S. branch employees to adopt change plans. In this report prepared for the VP, you will discuss the change readiness of the workforce and leadership, willingness, and capabilities for change, as well as any historical barriers to change from past planned or unplanned change management experiences.
Specifically, it would be best if you addressed the following rubric criteria:
Based on the Employee Engagement Surveys data, create visuals that illustrate areas in need of change at the U.S. branch. Your visuals should address the following:
- Appraisal, job-role stagnation, and promotion or recognition
- Apathy or disinterest regarding the vision, mission, and values of the organization
- Lack of trust in managers, especially senior leaders
- Impressions about the organization’s attitude to inclusion and diversity
- A justification of your selection of data points from the Employee Engagement Survey results
Discuss employees’ confidence in change management practices:
- Consider the information available through the Employee Engagement Surveys and Leaders’ Self-Evaluations.
- Do employees have a high degree of confidence in the company’s leadership? Explain your reasoning.
- Explain the urgency for change at the employee and leadership level.
- Analyze the middle managers’ (team leads’) role in creating an adoption mindset:
- How would they serve as a bridge between the senior leaders and the frontline staff?
- Are they ready to take ownership of the proposed change? Explain your reasoning.
- How do leadership styles and power distribution impact change readiness?
Identify opportunities to increase change readiness/trust at the U.S. branch:
- Why are some employees more accepting of change while others might be more reluctant?
- How does the Forms of Resistance Grid explain the common reasons for resistance to change?
Use Hofstede’s cultural dimension model and the Exit Interviews, Employee Engagement Surveys, and Leaders’ Self-Evaluations to explain cultural considerations that may have created difficulties for the employees of the U.S. branch to adjust to the Singaporean headquarters’ SOPs:
- Summarize the importance of cultural considerations using Hofstede’s cultural dimensions model in the context of the U.S. branch and the Singaporean headquarters.
- Explain how Hofstede’s model helps analyze cultural differences based on specific evidence and not on preconceived notions about different cultures.
- Discuss how differences in specific dimensions of Hofstede’s model may result in misunderstanding and change management frustration or failure.
Discuss individualism and one other dimension from the list below that might impact the cross-cultural communication and business practice differences among American and Singaporean employees:
- Uncertainty avoidance
- Power distance
- Long-term orientation