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Managing strategic change - Essay Example

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Managing strategic change

In 2003 the system of tax credits for children and for adults was overhauled and extended, such that the meaning of means-testing has been substantially changed. The NHS Plan, published in 2000, finally produced a major cash injection for the service, the results of which did not begin to be felt until the end of 2001. Only after acting to redraw the work-welfare relationship to embody the ideas of opportunity and responsibility via the new instruments of the New Deals and tax credits did New Labour begin to justify vastly increased expenditure on health and education as necessary investments in human capital. It is also crucial to note that Labour Party leaders expressed caution about how much the state could actually do to achieve these ideas at the heart of its policy goals. In a speech on 'modernising central government' in 1998, Tony Blair said: 'Big government is dead. The days of tax and spend are gone. (www.new.bbc.co.uk)
When people come together in groups, communities, cities or nations, levels of confusion and anxiety rise. Attempts are made to manage this anxiety by creating structure, rules and legislation. Organizations can be viewed as mini societies in which changes are driven or resisted in accordance with the beliefs that are deeply held by the members of that society. The beliefs may not be articulated explicitly. They may be conveyed symbolically, through such things as stories, myths, rituals and ceremonies. (Klein, 2003)
Force field analysis was developed by Kurt Lewin. Force field analysis enables managers to identify the forces that are likely to restrain a particular change. Force field analysis is sometimes used with groups in order to structure an open discussion about what is blocking a change. Having identified the potential sources and levels of resistance, Lewin suggested that managers should act so as to reduce the restraining forces, rather than to intensify the forces driving the change. Lewin, like Newton, argued that to every action there was an equal and opposite reaction. Increasing the forces for change increases the forces resisting it. Overcoming resistance was characterized by Russell-Jones as a movement from defiance, through compliance to alliance. Central to the effectiveness of any approach to man-aging resistance is the quality of the relationships that managers develop with people in the organization. We look at conversational approaches to developing closer relationships with people. (Johnson & Scholes, 1999)
Practical Force field analysis.
Unfreeze current attitudes
According to BBC report Mr Nicholson, who has worked in the NHS for 29 years, said some of the changes would be aimed at reducing the NHS deficit, which topped '500 million. But he added it was also about improving services by providing the best care in fewer centres, although he acknowledged this would mean patients travelling further for treatment. Undoubtedly there will be tough decisions to make over the next 12 months to reflect changing services. (www.new.bbc.co.uk)
Move to a new level
According to BBC report the NHS chief executive further said that there would be up to 60 reviews of hospitals in England. He said the changes could affect every region, and may lead to emergency, maternity and ...Show more

Summary

The pattern of social policy-making since 1997, in terms of both the order in which policy areas were tackled and the nature of the policies that were chosen, reflects the core ideas. Many Labour supporters assumed that the new government would begin by pumping money into public services, particularly the NHS…
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Managing strategic change essay example
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