IBM, International Business Machines: The Driving Forces Of Organizational Change

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Change is inevitable. While some individuals or organizations may try to run away from the idea of change, there is no avoiding the subject. Change can occur at any point and at various levels of an organization. However, in the modern day and age, where organizations, businesses and people are constantly forced to accept and adjust to the latest trends, everyone is impacted by change, whether they are prepared for it or not. In the increasingly evolving and competitive world of business, it is necessary for organizations to willingly accept, act and thrive on change in the workplace. Not all factors of change can be easily managed or controlled. Change agents, such as technology, economic shock, competition, social trends, and world politics, …show more content…
Businesses can and should continually seek organizational change, even when they are experiencing success in their industry, in order to stay current with the markets. Under the influence of executive leaders and management as the driving forces of implementing change, organizational change can contribute to increased productivity, in addition to a company’s existing success. For example, in one case study involving IBM, International Business Machines, a series of organizational changes were implemented, while the company was experiencing success. Thomas Watson, the founder of the company, declared three founding principles that guided the values of the organization, including: respect for the individual, the best customer service, and the pursuit of excellence (Hemp & Stewart, 2004). The maintenance of these core values were being neglected as the success of the company continued to grow exponentially. This is where organizational change needed to be implemented. The new CEO, Sam Palmisano, recognized the need for organizational change in maintaining the corporation’s core values. In 2003, Palmisano introduced the idea of reestablishing the company’s core values to hundreds of IBM managers called “ValueJam.” The proposed new values included: respect, customer, excellence, and innovation (Hemp & Stewart, 2004). ValueJam, an online forum, provided a test market to see where employees ranked in the importance of reinventing a company’s core values. By gaining feedback from the employees of the company, Palmisano engaged in various steps of the change process and Kotter’s Eight-Step Plan. Specifically, Palmisano formed a coalition with the power to evoke change, communicated a new vision, and empowered others to adopt the new vision into the IBM’s company culture. The online forum allowed Palmisano to receive feedback from the company. From this

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