Organisation Change

  • 14 Pages
  • Published On: 14-12-2023


The term organisational change can be referred towards those actions and changes that a company brings into their business organisation or alters their major components and elements of the firm. The changes can be like cultural changes, technological changes, infrastructural changes, operational changes and any other kind of internal or external process changes. These changes are especially brought into the business due to some reasons such as to enter in a new market a company have to make changes into their operations and functioning accordingly or if there is any economical or climatic or global crisis came up at that time organisations have to change their business tactics as per the requirements or situations. This assessment will be going to present that how in the recent Covid-19 global pandemic situations Sainsbury’s company brought organisational changes in their business and how effective are those changes. Further recommendations were also suggested to apply the organisational changes in the business in a different way for a better result through some models, theories and concepts.

LO1 Demonstration of a critical awareness of the contextual issues surrounding change in organisations

Organisational change is that particular movement within the organisation from one definite state to other state of affairs. Organisational changes can take its forms in different ways involving the structure, polices, strategies, technology, culture and procedures. There are two effects of the organisational change where one can be swiftly or radically altered in the organisational operations and moreover it can be either slow or incremental in its nature (Higgins et al. 2019). Regardless of the other aspects the issues which can make these changes difficult are –

Demographic changes


When there are demographic changes in the organisational change, there a critical issue arises which is difficult to deal with is the age-related stereotypes in the organisation. This issue arises when a change is evaluated by all age group employees of the company. Different aged people will accept it differently in their own way and the resistance too comes like the same in the employees.

Technological changes

The technological changes are acceptable only by the people who are aware of that and can have the knowledge of the technological matter. In this case, the lower level workers who are not that much known with all kinds of technological matters and elements, they found it difficult and hence they resist to the upcoming changes within the business. This issue arises due to the various types of the academic knowledge levels of employees.

Changes in location and markets

Whenever a company decides to go global other than their home location, they have to take care of a long list of things since being global means change in the employees’ job locations, new market conditions, huge competition on a global level and so on. All these emerges issue within the business like employees’ stress to adjust and cope up with the new environment after being moved overseas. As suggested by Braben and Morris (2020) apart from this, retraining the workforce to apply new strategies sand techniques of working, making them capable of competing on a global scale with the global workforces are those change issue which every company have to grip on as quick as possible not wasting any time.

Poor performances

Successful changes are well capable of managing the changed behaviours with special practices and tactics to keep the performance in place and grow more effectively and make it easy to adapt the changes. Before these, initially when the business organisations bring changes in their actions and activities that mostly affects the employees and somehow they lost their engagement and energy to work like previously. This is a bad sign and a major issue in the changed surrounding. When a company is planning to adopt new changes, it is must that they should first of all prepare their workforce to deal with that and make them connected with the coming changes so that whenever the change occurs they welcome and adopt them efficiently (Korsakienė et al. 2017).

Feeling of loss or power and uncertainty

Changes are inevitable to bring the feeling of uncertainty among the employees and losing their previous power and position in the company. This happens because when the company policies, structures and strategies change the employees’ responsibilities also may changes which give them fear to lose their job or existing position. It becomes unclear for them to assume that whether they will be needed by the business or not and if the job stays whether they will get the same past positional powers or not.

LO2 Demonstration of a critical application of theories of Change Management

Due to the recent pandemic situation of Covid-19, many organisations have to adopt and accept new organisational changes just like Sainsbury’s, which is a huge retail brand from the food and grocery industry of UK. Since March 2019, the business started to get affected with nearly about 500 jobs role were slashed from their London Headquarters and in 2020 there was expectations of 3500 more to get job losses (Retail Economics, 2020). They have to shut down nearly 420 of their Argos physical stores and one of a London fulfilment till 2021 (Sainsbury's, 2020). In this regard, there are many different theories and concepts which can be applied by all the organisations including Sainsbury’s who have changed their organisational structures, policies and strategies due to the pandemic. These theories if applied can be helpful in many ways to make the organisational changes results better from the current scenario.

Lewin’s Change Management Model

This model theory is developed by Kurt Lewin, which is a three definite phased model that helps in breaking down the big difficult organisational changes into small and more manageable change chunks. There are three phases: Unfreezing, Changing and Refreezing (Image 1). Unfreezing means loosening the current process and then identifying the chances of improvements in the current scenario in such a way that everyone who will be affected can understand the need for the upcoming change. Then the changes can be made along with guiding the employees during throughout the transition. After changing when once the scenario is tweaked and deployed as per the employee feedbacks, then the change can again be solidified or refreeze according to the new change status. This theory can be applied by Sainsbury’s and many other companies in this Covid-19 situational organisational change management. It can make the process a little easier than the other normal ways. This makes the change phase less resistant from the employees’ side instead understood employees will be a big support in the transitional process (Ten Have e al. 2018). Using this model is fruitful if the management of the organisation have a strong support from the departments and the teams of the company.

Nudge Theory

The Nudge theory mainly relies on the indirect and subtle suggestions of the change management which are backed up by the evidences so that when the employees tries to resist, they can be nudged towards the changing direction as desired by the management. In this theory the area or premises which are changing is more effective towards the nudging instead of strictly enforcing the changes. The principles of this model theory are (Image 2)–

Firstly the changes must be defined properly to the effective persons

After that most important is to consider the employees’ point of view and listen to them carefully

Then presenting the evidences which proves that the change will show best results make the ice smother to break

At this stage, the change can be presented as an choice too

After the previous step, it is again necessary to get the feedbacks from the employees

Next limiting the options is required

Lastly solidifying the changes with various short term wins are favourable than full resistance

Cameron and Green (2019) stated that the beauty of this theory is that it makes the employees’ understanding of the need of change as priority since without their support no organisation can imply change in their management. Sainsbury’s can also apply this as it will make their workforce get the point of the needed change which the organisation brought due to the Covid-19 situation.

LO3 Demonstration of a critical understanding of potential roles in organisational change

The ultimate objective of every change management is to mainly drive the organisational outcomes and results by making the employees engaged in the change and inspiring them to adopt that as a new and innovative way of working. In this overall process there are certain roles in the organisation which are potentially responsible for initiating and successfully accomplishing the change process.

Change Practitioners – The change practitioners are responsible for managing and contributing to the outcomes of the change so that it can be successful by using various change adoption techniques, preparing the people who will be affected and supporting them to integrate the new plans, polices and strategies. They are also known as the change management designers because they only are capable of drawing out the change process plan by analysing all the aspects of the organisation (Rosenbaum et al. 2018). In Sainsbury’s the role of change practitioners was to identify that what measures can be taken to survive in the Covid-19 pandemic global crisis and how to bring some changes in the management so that the organisation can functions properly in bad times too.

Managers – They are the front level leaders who manage the employees and staff members by facing them, their questions, doubts and issues. They are responsible for communicating with the workforces on their level as make them understand that how the change will be positive and how all of them will get benefitted by the changes (Domingues et al. 2017). The managers at Sainsbury’s makes the employees ready to accept the change by training them new the new policies an strategies that have been implemented due to the crisis situation. They perform the role of a bridge between the management and the workforce and acts as the coach to train them too.

Project Managers – The project managers have the potential to plan the change step by step, procuring the plan and making the steps executed properly. They are the field managers also who looks after that whether the change is going according to the plan or not and if any issues rise in between the process they also acts as the line managers to solve them and resume the plan. The project managers contributes ideas and methods through which the people can be integrated for collectively and unitely accepting the coming change in the organisation.

Impacted Employees – The most affected people in any kind of change process in the company are the workforce of that company including the employees, staff members and the workers. It is essential that the employees who will be affected must adopt the change fruitfully according to plan and engage themselves in making the change successful by contributing towards their respective roles and responsibilities (Heyden et al. 2017). They must understand that why the change has been initiated, what benefits the company will get, to what extents the workforce will receive and how much the change is needed for the company according to the current scenario.

Apart from all these potential roles, there are some more responsible persons who play equally important role in the change management like the Internal communication and training specialists, the Organisational development staffs, Human resource business partners, Business analysts, Solution developers in the company, Subject matter experts and lastly the Change agent networks.

LO4 Developing an awareness of potential interventions and activities in organisational change

The term intervention can be used in reference to all those programmatic plans and activities that are aims especially in bringing the changes in any organisation. These changes are specifically intended for benefitting and improving the functions of any organisation to its best possible efficiency and effectiveness with the support of the workforce and the management. Interventions or activities in the organisational related change can be team based interventions; role based interventions or can be intergroup interventions. Some combined interventions can be like –

Increasing the interactions and the placing a smooth communication path among groups and teams or even in between the single employee and the management where the manager plays the role of connecting both of them and resolving the issues if raised.

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Role analysis techniques (RAT) activities redefine the role of various personnel in an organisation according to their job roles and looks after the prescribed and discretionary elements of each job roles.

Some of the interventional activities aim at improving and bringing the compatibilities in between the demands of the job role and the incumbent job with all the associated expectations of the designation.

The interventions and activities related with the team building for adopting the organisational changes are typically directed towards the areas such as task accomplishments, team processes, issue diagnosis, team relationship building and organisational actions (SpringerLink, 2018).

The motive of the organisational change activities and interventions are form of the self-introspection and reflection, facilitates coaching, feedbacks and mentors too.

The interventions and activities of the change management are specifically role-focused, action-research based, person-focused, process feedback based and also the training based.

Role efficacy interventions are psychological factors that come when the change management is conducted to give moral support so that the employees can adapt the organisational changes.

The interventions and activities of the organisational change provide learning from the underlying processes of the organisational functions.

The interventions of the process consultations activities are used to help in consulting to solve the issue which arises from the organisational changes (Ghielen et al. 2018). The process consultation interventions reflect more of the interpersonal situations in the substantive areas.

Another more essential work that the potential interventions and activities are to remove he conflicts at every stage and in every plan and strategies during the procedure of the organisational change.

All these interventional activities can also be applied while Sainsbury’s was applying the organisational change in their organisation when the recent Covid-19 pandemic situation when there is global level crisis. It can be recommended that Sainsbury’s organisational change management has their roles to handle the reactions and results but there are other theories too which can be implemented to make the functions smooth and positive.


The assessment above has presented the aspects of the organisational change and its functional management activities. The concepts which are discussed here regarding the change management can also be implemented in the Sainsbury’s organisational change management. Interventions or activities in the organisational related change can be team based interventions; role based interventions or can be intergroup interventions. These interventions are also responsible for increasing the interactions and the placing a smooth communication path among groups and teams or even in between the single employee and the management where the manager plays the role of connecting both of them and resolving the issues if raised. The Nudge theory mainly relies on the indirect and subtle suggestions of the change management which are backed up by the evidences so that when the employees tries to resist, they can be nudged towards the changing direction as desired by the management. The Lewin’s change management model has three definite phased model unfreezing, changing and refreezing that helps in breaking down the big difficult organisational changes into small and more manageable change chunks. Lastly it can be concluded that the interventions and theories can be implemented in Sainsbury’s for better management of their organisational change during the Covid-19 pandemic situations over worldwide crisis.


SpringerLink. (2018). Retrieved from Barriers and facilitators to implementing evidence-based interventions among third sector organisations: a systematic review :

Retail Economics . (2020). Retrieved from UK retail administrations, CVAs, store closures and job losses from COVID-19:

Sainsbury's. (2020). Retrieved from Update on the impact of COVID-19 and Preliminary Results for the 52 weeks to 7 March 2020: Braben, , L., & Morris, , N. (2020). Organisational change--learning from experience. Loss Prevention Bulletin.

Cameron, , E., & Green, , M. (2019). Making sense of change management: A complete guide to the models, tools and techniques of organizational change. Kogan Page Publishers.

Christina Meyers, , M., Ghielen, , S. S., & van Woerkom, , M. (2018). Promoting positive outcomes through strengths interventions: A literature review. The Journal of Positive Psychology, pp.573-585.

Higgins, , C., Stubbs, , W., Tweedie, , D., & McCallum, , G. (2019). Journey or toolbox? Integrated reporting and processes of organisational change. Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal.

Koene, , B. A., Werkman, , R., Ansari, , S., Heyden, , M. L., & Fourné, , S. P. (2017). Rethinking ‘top‐down’and ‘bottom‐up’roles of top and middle managers in organizational change: Implications for employee support. Journal of management studies, pp.961-985.

Korsakienė,, R., Juodeikė, , R., & Bužavaitė, , M. (2017). Factors impacting and restricting success of organisational changes. In International Scientific Conference „Contemporary Issues in Business, Management and Education “

Ramos, , T. B., Ceulemans, , K., Domingues, , A. R., & Lozano,, R. (2017). Sustainability reporting in public sector organisations: Exploring the relation between the reporting process and organisational change management for sustainability. . Journal of environmental management, pp.292-301.

Rosenbaum, , D., More, , E., & Steane, , P. (2018). Planned organisational change management: Forward to the past? An exploratory literature review. Journal of Organizational Change Management.

ten Have,, W., Westhof, , J., Ten Have, , S., & Rijsman, , J. (2018). The Social Psychology of Change Management: Theories and an Evidence-based Perspective on Social and Organizational Beings. Routledge.


Lewin’s change management model Nudge Theory
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