Western Cape Business News

Send  Share  RSS  Twitter  20 Aug 2009

MANAGEMENT: Organisational Change Demystified


Recent Western Cape Business News

The UCT Graduate School of Business has teamed up with Christophe Gillet, an organisational change expert and former head of business innovation for Sony Europe, to launch a new course to help organisations make the necessary changes to survive and thrive.

According to data released by Statistics SA this week, South Africa's economy is still officially in recession, with a reported 3% contraction in Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the second quarter of this year.

Gillet said that with the inability to predict what’s ahead, coupled with the general reluctance to change within most organisations, the way forward, and surviving, is intrinsically difficult to map out and execute.

In light of this current state of affairs, most companies are still doing very little – this has been the most common response from businesses worldwide. These organisations live in hope that if they sit tight and watch their costs, the good times will roll by again and they’ll survive the recession intact,” said Gillet.

This strategy, he argued has little merit as it does not create a stronger, more competitive business. “Following a strategy based on hope, businesses are often left weakened and weathered and face the danger of becoming obsolete,” he said.

Gillet recommends that leaders rethink their organisations and change the way they do business.

This is absolutely necessary for companies that are now considering their long-term success. Evolving requires innovation and change – leading change in a recession is a challenging job and it calls on leaders to shift up a gear and innovate in the way that they lead,” he said.

He explained that the new UCT GSB course, called Organisational Change Demystified and running from 31 August – 1 September, is designed for experienced managers facing the challenges of organisational change, in which ambiguity, complexity and resistance to change are key factors.

Gillet said the course has been designed to give practical, workable solutions to deal with change successfully – and not to discuss it on a purely academic level.

The course will offer a practical set of tools that are simple to understand and easy to use to ensure that delegates can actually think and act differently when they return to the office.

We will develop a non-conventional way of thinking about change to address ‘hard’ (processes) and ‘soft’ (people) issues in relation to organisational change,” he said.

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