Making Sense of Change Management
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Making Sense of Change Management

A Complete Guide to the Models, Tools and Techniques of Organizational Change

Esther Cameron, Mike Green

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eBook - ePub

Making Sense of Change Management

A Complete Guide to the Models, Tools and Techniques of Organizational Change

Esther Cameron, Mike Green

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About This Book

This definitive, bestselling text in the field of change management provides comprehensive guidance of everything needed to successfully navigate times of change. Making Sense of Change Managemen t provides a thorough and accessible overview for students and practitioners alike. Without relying on assumed knowledge, it comprehensively covers the theories and models of change management and connects them to workable approaches and techniques that organizations of all types and sizes can use to adapt to tough market conditions and succeed by changing their strategies, structures, mindsets, leadership behaviours and expectations of staff and managers.This completely revised and updated fifth edition contains new chapters on digital transformation and becoming a sustainable business, new material on resilience, well-being and effective leadership, and new examples from organizations including Google, Burberry and Volvo. Supported by "food for thought" and "stop and think" features to aid critical thinking and understanding, as well as checklists, tips and helpful summaries, Making Sense of Change Management remains essential reading for anyone who is currently part of, or leading, a change initiative. New and updated accompanying online resources include international case study question packs for lecturers and lecture slides with reflective questions.

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Kogan Page

The underpinning theory

All appears to change when we change.
Individual change is at the heart of everything that is achieved in organizations. Once individuals have the motivation to do something different, the whole world can begin to change. The conspiracy laws in the UK recognize this capacity for big change to start small. In some legal cases, the merest nod or a wink between two people seems to be considered adequate evidence to indicate a conspiratorial act. In some respects this type of law indicates the incredible power that individuals have within them to challenge existing power strongholds and alter the way things are done.
However, individuals are to some extent governed by the norms of the groups they belong to, and groups are bound together in a whole system of networks of people that interconnect in various habitual ways. So the story is not always that simple. Individuals, teams and organizations all play a part in the process of change, and leaders have a particularly onerous responsibility: that is, making all this happen.
We divided this book into three parts so that readers could have the option either to start their journey through this book by first reading about the theory of change, or to begin by reading about the practical applications. We understand that people have different preferences. However, we do think that a thorough grounding in the theory is useful to help each person to untangle and articulate his or her own assumptions about how organizations work and how change occurs. Do you, for instance, think that organizations can be changed by those in leadership positions to reach a predetermined end state, or do you think that people in organizations need to be collectively aware of the need for change before they can begin to adapt? Assumptions can be dangerous things when not explored, as they can restrict your thinking and narrow down your options.
Part One comprises five chapters. These have been chosen to represent five useful perspectives on change: individual change, team change, organizational change, leading change and the role of the change agent. Chapter 1 draws together the four key approaches to understanding individual change. These are the behavioural, cognitive, psychodynamic and humanistic psychology approaches. This chapter also looks at the connection between personality and change, and how to enable change, develop resilience and manage any resistance in others when you are acting in a managerial role.
Chapter 2 identifies the main elements of team and group theory that we believe are useful to understand when managing change. This chapter compares different types of team, looks at the area of team effectiveness, and examines the process of team development. The composition of the team and the effect this has on team performance are also examined, as well as the way in which different types of team contribute to the organizational change process. Team dysfunction and team resilience are also discussed.
Chapter 3 looks at a wide range of approaches to organizational change, using organizational metaphor to show how these are interconnected and related. Familiar and unfamiliar frameworks for understanding and implementing change are described and categorized by metaphor to enable the underpinning assumptions to be examined, and we give tips and guidance on how to use these frameworks.
Chapter 4 examines the leadership of change. We start by looking at the difference between management and leadership and the different ways of looking at leadership as a discipline. This includes strategic leadership, emotionally intelligent leadership, collaborative leadership and mindful leadership. It also examines transformational leadership, the skills and qualities of successful leaders, leading change processes, leading ‘flow’ and sustaining yourself as a leader.
Chapter 5 looks at the role of the change agent, highlighting areas of competence needed and exploring the unique role that the agent of change plays in the change process, particularly what is going on inside for them; how they can use that to great effect; and how they might need help in the change process itself.

Individual change


This chapter draws together the key theories of how individuals go through change, using various models to explore this phenomenon. The aims of this chapter are to give managers and others experiencing or implementing change an understanding of the change process and how it impacts individuals, and strategies to use when helping people through change to ensure results are achieved.
This chapter covers the following topics, each of which takes a different perspective on individual change:
  • Learning and the process of change – in what ways can models of learning help us understand individual change and develop ourselves?
  • The behavioural approach to change – how can we change people’s behaviour?
  • The cognitive approach to change – how change can be made attractive to people and how people can achieve the results that they want.
  • The psychodynamic approach to change – what’s actually going on for people as they experience change, and what are the implications for their health and well-being?
  • The humanistic psychology approach to change – how can people maximize the benefits of change?
  • Personality and change – how do we differ in our responses to change?
  • Managing change in self and others – if we can understand people’s internal experience and we know what changes need to happen, what is the best way to effect change and how can individuals build their resilience to change? Why may people resist change, what forms does resistance take, and how can we manage resistance effectively?
As the box points out, a key point for managers of change is to understand the distinction between the changes being managed in the external world and the concurrent psychological transitions that are experienced internally by people (including managers of change themselves). Throughout the book we will draw upon both seminal authors and the latest research and practice.


It was the ancient Greek philosopher, Heraclitus, who maintained that you never step into the same river twice. Of course most people interpret that statement as indicating that the river – that is, the external world – never stays the same, is always changing: constant flux, in Heraclitus’s words again. However, there is another way of interpreting what he said. Perhaps the ‘you’ who steps into the river today is not the same ‘you’ who will step into the river tomorrow. This interpretation – which might open up a whole can of existential and philosophical worms – is much more to do with the inner world of experience than with the external world of facts and figures.
Immediately, therefore, we have two ways of looking at and responding to change: the changes that happen in the outside world and those changes that take place in the internal world. Often though, it is the internal reaction to external change that proves the most fruitful area of dis...

Table of contents

Citation styles for Making Sense of Change Management
APA 6 Citation
Cameron, E., & Green, M. (2019). Making Sense of Change Management (5th ed.). Kogan Page. Retrieved from (Original work published 2019)
Chicago Citation
Cameron, Esther, and Mike Green. (2019) 2019. Making Sense of Change Management. 5th ed. Kogan Page.
Harvard Citation
Cameron, E. and Green, M. (2019) Making Sense of Change Management. 5th edn. Kogan Page. Available at: (Accessed: 14 October 2022).
MLA 7 Citation
Cameron, Esther, and Mike Green. Making Sense of Change Management. 5th ed. Kogan Page, 2019. Web. 14 Oct. 2022.