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Change management 'can be embedded throughout companies'

30 June 2011

An HR professional has stressed the importance of promoting change at different levels of an organisation.

Speaking at the annual conference of the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), Andy Ortiz of Warner Bros Entertainment claimed a successful change initiative does not have to be driven by top-level leadership.

In comments reported by People Management, the expert suggested some companies will find that change management is "not in the chief executive's comfort zone".

Mr Ortiz was one of many speakers at the industry event in Atlanta, which featured keynote addresses from Sir Richard Branson, Arianna Huffington and Michael J Fox.

The Warner Bros representative advised businesses with change agendas to think creatively about the best way to alter the approaches and perceptions of their employees.

Like other major film studios, Warner Bros has faced numerous challenges stemming from the development of the internet and the growing demand for content on iPads and smartphones.

Mr Ortiz, senior vice-president of organisation effectiveness at the entertainment giant, said the company has been forced to find a way of driving change without impetus from the top.

"We are never going to have a top-down approach - it's not our chief executive's style," he told the SHRM delegates.

As a result, the HR team decided to use prominent figures at different levels of the firm to communicate its message.

"We had to plant the seeds of change all over the organisation, with the middle managers and the leaders that will do it," Mr Ortiz said.

Earlier this week, public services provider Amey was recognised for operating the most successful change management programme at this year's HR Excellence Awards.

The Oxford-based company launched a wide-ranging programme to become more efficient after setting itself a target of boosting revenues by 7.2 per cent between 2010 and 2014.

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Categories: Commercial


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