In overview, change management involves the implementation of a prepared process and a collection of tools for leading individual change to accomplish a preferred result. It places emphasis on the human resource of change and focuses leadership within each level of a company inclusive of the management, senior leaders, middle managers and the line supervisors. When change management occurs successfully, people participate within the respective process and respond collectively towards a general goal, achieving benefits and delivering the outcomes. Similar to every organization, Schlumberger has also attempted to inculcate change within its organizational culture. However, the company has had various difficulties while attempting to alter the status quo of its particular organizational framework. In spite of this, certain strategies can be employed in an effort to ensure that change occurs within all levels of the organization.
Schlumberger’s Failed Change Initiative
Over the years the company has been in business, Schlumberger has experienced significant difficulties in relation to the effects of diversity on organizational culture. The goal of this aspect is to ensure that each employee contributes considerably to the victory of the firm. Therefore, combining diversity can augment the chances of successful financial performance. However, communication is an issue that affects diversity within organizations. This is because employees may be unable to understand the language used within the workplace environment. As such, organizational workplaces present a viable setting towards the occurrence of conflict. When employees become unable to understand each other, it becomes rather complicated for organizations to work collectively towards the goals and objectives it hopes to achieve within its respective schedule. In addition to the effects of miscommunication, the inability to understand each other within the workplace damages the possibility of positive employee relations.
Up until now, Schlumberger has realized the considerable impacts that miscommunication imposes in the workplace setting. Accordingly, the company faces considerable issues of diversity due to its large workforce, which is composed of employees with different attributes. Such attributes comprise regional disparities, cultural differences as well as various ethnic backgrounds. Because of this, the organization has attempted to structure its organizational framework in a manner that corresponds to its efforts in achieving diversity. The prospective organizational framework will enable Schlumberger to establish motivation programs, which will focus on improving the morale of the employees. In addition to this, this particular framework will also favor output among workers. The purpose of this involves discovery of the problems that the employees have faced in the prevailing working conditions.
The predisposition towards an output system and a motivation program by Schlumberger does not necessarily correlate to the issues of diversity faced by the company. Consequently, the organization has exuded incapacities within the establishment of accommodation schemes for its employees. Accommodation programs are helpful to the overall productivity of the organization. This is because the safeguard employees from the problems that may arise from misinterpretation of interaction or information. In this respect, since the organization carries out hazardous occupations in the fields, it is imperative to ensure that communication is understood wholly among employees. In a situation where the employees will be unable to interact with one another or misconstrue such associations, then they will be liable to the occurrence of dangerous conditions that may lead to demise. Aside from this issue, Schlumberger provides inadequate assistance to employees when in the midst of scouting for sufficient ways of accommodation. This measure coerces employees to rent cheap apartments or abodes that are far from the organization’s offices.
Issues Affecting the Change Initiative in Schlumberger
Based on the case of Schlumberger, it is evident that the organization faces a range of issues arising from its need to modify its organizational culture. However, this is not different from all other organizations. Normally, attempting to change the status quo of a particular organizational setting is limited by various factors within the respective firm. Such factors usually range from the workplace setting itself and the organizational culture to the employees themselves. This resistance to change may affect the performance of an organization considerably if unsolved in the change management process. In terms of Schlumberger, certain factors illustrate the problems and limitations that have established the failure of its change initiative. These factors can be addressed in a theoretical manner in order to understand and institute a profound and positive change management process.
One of the reasons restricting change in Schlumberger comprises the inability of the employees to accept themselves. In this respect, the respective organization has experienced considerable problems amounting from issues of diversity. Such issues are a result of the employees’ incapability of putting aside their many forms of differences. For instance, the employees, due to their lack of proficiency in English, focus more on communicating in their particular dialect and as such, create misunderstandings between the employees and the management. This presents a problem especially if the organization attempts to relay pertinent information to the workers. The paradoxical change theory surmises that change can solely occur if individuals accept and become the persons that they really are. Understanding oneself is significantly imperative to the change process since it ensures that the individuals are commonly aware of their strengths and weaknesses. This enables them to cooperate and work together in guaranteeing their own successes and the success of the organization in return.
In relation to Schlumberger, the employees seem to be rather unaware of themselves and the impact that their actions poses on the organization’s support for change. Because of the diversity of the organization, employees interact in their particular languages considerably. However, contrary to the change theory, they do not seem to understand that their personal lapse in judgment poses a large risk to the organization in terms of change and subsequent productivity. In addition, the employees are not aware of their present experience due to the way they consistently engage in their own interest when it comes to communication. Because of this problem, it becomes highly difficult for the organization to implement its changes. Furthermore, the lack of understanding between the management and the employees further limits the initiative of change in Schlumberger.
Another issue involved in the case involves the lack of communication. As mentioned, communication affects organizations considerably. Concerning Schlumberger, miscommunication is an issue that arises from the inability of the employees to understand one another. Undeniably, as the organization attempts to effect change within its structure, communication raises a considerable problem based on the actuality that none of the workers comprehends the English language. Therefore, as the management relays information to the employees in English, they, on the other hand, fail to understand and instead, respond with their native language. This limits any form of interaction that may take place within the organization, especially among employees originating from different regions, dialects and cultural backgrounds.
The issue of communication in Schlumberger is serious based on the negative impacts it may pose on the company if not managed effectively. Accordingly, when workers do not possess imperative information, imagination becomes a reality in areas where they do not understand the conveyed data. Because of this, resistance to change may be evident regardless of the positive modifications that the organization may attempt to make. Furthermore, the management depends on the information quality as well as the frequency due to the influence it poses on minimizing opposition towards alteration. Lack of information for the management can only lead to the absence of informed decisions, which can assist in the establishment of frameworks that enhance employee productivity.
Facilitating Change Management in Schlumberger
For Schlumberger, the accommodation process is a significant program that can assist greatly in enhancing communication among employees. However, implementing such a process may gain resistance based on certain factors. One of these involves the employees’ inclination towards their native language. Because of this predicament, it is important for the organization to convince the workers that the accommodation procedure is largely important in ensuring their safety and productivity. Indeed, various ways can be used by the management in Schlumberger in encouraging support for change. Participation is largely important in this situation. For lessening opposition to change among employees, the management can endorse participation. This process will allow the employees to experience the need to change themselves. Similarly, the paradoxical premise of change further asserts that self-knowledge constitutes the first step towards facilitating the process of change.
Once employees experience the need to change, then it becomes simple for them to support the change process. In addition to this, it will also be important for the organization to involve employees in the respective procedure. Definitely, allowing employees to take part in the process motivates them and allows them to feel meaningful towards the procedure. Hence, in order to avert resistance, the management has to involve the employees during design and implementation. This assists greatly especially in lessening opposition to alteration. An added advantage is based on the way the process of participation increases commitment among the employees. Overall, the process nurtures positive changes within the improvement of the organization’s vision and strategy.
The endorsement of communication is also important in facilitating change management within the company. As mentioned, imagination becomes reality in areas where miscommunication influences misinterpretation. However, such an issue does not only affect the employees. Accordingly, leaders are dependent on information in areas where decision-making is involved. For Schlumberger, implementing the accommodation process may be difficult if proper and quality communication is not utilized. Nonetheless, it is possible to ensure this within this particular workplace setting. For instance, the management can engage in a face-to-face dialogue with the employees regarding the importance of communicating in the English language. Moreover, the discussion can also entail the demerits that miscommunication can impose on the employees. Such demerits range from the miscomprehension to demise based on the dangerous working conditions that the employees occupy while within the fields.
In conclusion, the change management process is important for every organization. Accordingly, the subject of modification can easily become a factor of conflict in the workplace. This is because of the resistance that may arise from the employees against any form of alteration made within the respective organization. For Schlumberger, implementing change is difficult due to communication. Communication poses a considerable factor because of the high level of diversity within the workforce. However, this lack of cohesive communication can leave the employees susceptible to hazards in and out of the workplace environment. Nonetheless, as the company seeks to implement accommodation, it can focus on activities such as employee participation and communication endorsement in order to avert resistance to such changes.