An example of good reflective writing – integration of theory with personal experience; justification and explanation of person experience using relevant theory as support; provides insight into the author’s observations of the theory; appropriate use of language; analysis of theory within the context of own experience. Organisational change and development theory suggests that models are a good way of providing change practitioners with strategies to plan, implement and move through various stages of change (Waddell, Cummings & Worley, 2007).
While it is arguable that models are useful in providing guidelines for change practitioners, I feel that they are not necessarily an accurate representation of how change is actually experienced in organisations. I have worked in an organisation that has been through repeated change throughout the duration of my employment. My experience of change has been somewhat different from how it is reflected in change models.
For example, as an employee I have not been involved in the initial planning stages of change, nor have I been involved in diagnosis at an individual level, therefore I am unclear as to what happens during these stages. From an individual perspective, it feels as though change is planned and implemented in my organisation at the senior levels of management without adequate input or information to and from staff. Further, from my perspective, change is not experienced in a smooth manner as suggested by change models.
I have experienced change that has not appeared to move beyond the unfreezing stages (Lewin, 1947), and I have also experienced change that has regressed at different stages rather than move forward. If I were to work with employees as a change practitioner, I would highlight the realities of change so that employees are aware that there are multiple experiences in addition to ‘the prominent way of viewing this process’ (McShane & Travaglione, 2007, p.502) within academic references.
An example of poor reflective writing – colloquial/non-academic writing style; opinion-based without justification or explanation; lack of engagement with theory; links to references not made; generalisation of opinion. In my job I have been though a lot of change and there is no way that what the change models say is right. My experiences of change have all been bad and there is no way that anybody could have had a good experience of change.
I don’t think change models are useful as they pretend that change is an easy process which is different from my opinion that no change is easy. I think I can speak for everyone when I say that managers don’t manage change properly as I have never seen the stages of any models within my organisation. This might be because my manager is a poor communicator which is what all the staff think. In my opinion, change models shouldn’t be taught to students as they can only teach students to think about change in the wrong way which doesn’t help employees who have to go through it.