Leadership attributes and management of strategic change at commercial banks in Kenya
Strategic change management is the use of systematic methods to ensure that an organization change can be guided in the planned direction, conducted in a cost effective manner and completed within the targeted time frame and with the desired results. This perspective views change management as a process. Change management is a structured and systematic approach to achieving a sustained change in human behavior within an organization. This views change management from people’s perspective. Strategic change has become a constant phenomenon which must be attended to and managed properly if an organization is to survive. Changes in technology, the marketplace, information systems, the global economy, social values, workforce demographics and the political environment have a significant effect on the processes, products and services produced. The culmination of these forces has resulted in an external environment that is dynamic, unpredictable, demanding and often devastating to those organizations which are unprepared or unable to respond. While organizational change is a constant experience, knowledge and awareness about many of the critical issues involved in the management of such change is often lacking in those responsible for its progress. Clearly if banks in Kenya are ever to experience a greater level of success in their development efforts, managers and other staff need to have a better framework for thinking about change and an understanding of the key issues which accompany strategic change management. All organizations are currently undergoing some type of change. Many of these change programmes arise from organized management strategies such as culture change, business process reengineering, empowerment and total quality. Other change initiatives are driven by the need for organizations to reposition themselves in the face of changing competitive conditions. Strategic change often involves radical transitions within an organization and encompasses strategy, structure, systems, processes and culture (Drucker, 2004). The track record of success in bringing about strategic change within most organizations has been poor in most organizations since many fail to grasp that they are performing an implementation which actually means turning plans into reality rather than formulation. The various attempts to improve on performance resulted in the mushrooming of alternative approaches and strategies to deliver services. However, despite the efforts by the banks to employ new approaches and strategies it has failed to manage the proposed strategic changes to yield expected results to enable it improve its service delivery to the expectations of stakeholders. This study therefore established leadership attributes and management of strategic change at commercial banks in Kenya.