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Strategic Change Management At Marks And Spencer Business Essay

Paper Type: Free Essay Subject: Business
Wordcount: 2845 words Published: 1st Jan 2015

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Marks and Spencer is one of the leading foods and non food items retailer almost all over the world and its mission is to provide excellent quality to their customers. It has long heritage of excellent service and product and successful stories of business. These days they have faced some great extend of competition from their competitors such as competitive price strategy and use of excellent market tools and new fashion at low cost prices. In this report we will discuss the need of change that Marks and Spencer would required in organization.

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Background of Change:

These days’ companies are focus to increase their product line and market their process by using of effective marketing tools for example 4p’s for example Tesco is the one of the biggest retailer in the UK and currently having more than 2500 line of products in their store and they are increasing their products day by day because they want to retain their old customers as well as they want to attract new customers, for this purpose they have strong R&D Team that helps them to know that what would be the competitive product and they not only took initiative but also start their specific group researched to improve their existing product. Mean while the whole process is monitored by upper management level and they use right place, right process and right product for the right people and increase their sales level with the slogan of ‘Every little help’. This is very effective strategy to show the whole process by saying that that they are only helping their customers.

The need of above example is the main key process of their R&D team is that they review their whole process again and again to make their decision and products better and implement changes on urgency basis.

Before discussing the need of change in Marks and Spencer I will discuss and model for changes which are these:

Kotter’s Model for Change

Kotter’s Model for Change:

Change is a process that need to be placed compulsory in each and every organization these days after certain period, these changed could be in management level or labour level, but the important thing that this change should be implemented successfully to gain the same level or more then the old level of satisfaction or profit.

In Harvard Business School Korter introduced the eight step of model of change that help organization to implement the desired change successfully and carefully and also on urgent basis. (Mind Tools, 2011)

He mentioned that changes that organization need in the presence of their competitors are most quick so that’s why employees should accept the change to help the org. to lead in market with quick decision.

Step no. 1:

Need of Urgency:

As we have discussed above that company needs a quick change to lead in the market with competitive skills and products and with competitive decisions. Now we will see its importance with an example of Marks and Spencer, suppose its competitor ASDA introduces a discount of 10% bread and butter together, now the very next morning it is the challenging situation for Marks and Spencer to retain their customers before opening hour they have to call the meeting on urgent basis and plan the change in their strategy because of the competitors actions, they introduce loyalty scheme that who buys bread and butter will get double club card point that will help to retain the customers and their profit will remain same, but afterwards they need to make it sure that this one decision is implement in all their branches in UK to protect the confidence of the customers. This is call urgency need of change. To implement these skills and situation M&S would need to:

Analyse their employees potential of learning and their knowledge skills that how active they are towards any change

Allow the room and time to employees to find out the need of business by doing SWOT analysis and made them aware that how quick they should be in term of change

When management take the decision from employees than employees would know and will assess the upcoming change and will be ready to adopt it.

Step no 2:

Strong Coalition:

Implementation of change without strong leadership means having a profit without investments in retail industry. We can measure the importance of change without leader in our daily lives. According to Korter team work of organization towards change leads to success. For that purpose Marks and Spencer must follow these points:

Take a feed back from employees about the progress of the leader

Do external audit to know the influence of leader on their employees

Hire new strong leader to implement the changes on urgent basis

Step 3:

Change in Goals and Mission:

Every organization do practice and do internal audit to make sure that their employees are working with the knowledge of their path that leads to common mission and objectives. According to Korter in case of change in organization goals and mission they must remember these new approaches to their employees. (Value Based, 2010) They can do in the following format:

Use of few words and post it inside the organization on small distances

Do the seminars with the general public and with employees to show your progress and the care company’s for customers and their employees

Use of these words in common speeches in mid term reports, etc.

Step no. 4:

Regular discussion and communication of vision and mission:

As we have discussed before that the need of the management is to do practice of remembering of common vision and mission among their employees to let them know their duties and any new changes.

Step no. 5:

Remove Obstacles:

As we have discussed the korters need of urgency at start they also focused that if they found any obstacle in reviewing process it must be removed urgently.

Step no 6:

Short Term Wins:

Management while remembering the vision among employees should appreciate every little effort of employees to made them perfect and efficient in their own tasks. This would help the other employees to be motivated. (The leader ship hub, 2011)

Step no 7:

Build the Change Continuously:

This step defines that company need to be productive and should not stop after certain level of change but regularly should analyse the market situation.

Step no 8:

Relation with company’s culture:

Company such as Marks and Spencer should always relate the change ideas and strategized with the company environment and with its current cultures.

Change in Marks and Spencer:

In recent research it is found that M&S having low level of sales due to their extra expenses on non related items like according to M&S they spent 2m pounds in partnership with Oxfam to collect the old unused cloths and for stopping land filling. This strategy also market on their websites and on different paid place these activities got lot of amount and did give back nothing in term of financial to stake holders. Before implementing these kinds of strategies it is necessary to measure the benefit of key stake holders. (Marks and Spencer, 2010)

Initially they attract 1200 of people on their web site in one moth by saying that they will award a sum of amount who would give the most productive idea to protect the environment but this activity to invite them didn’t give them as such because they were more focused towards other activities than introducing new styles and products.

Need of Change in Specific Areas:

As we have discussed the reason that why they need change that is first of all the over spent on the advertising and second thing is that the focus of the management towards companies goal and mission and third is increasing the product line.

These factors are not only focused on company’s strategies but if we discuss the same factors with the company’s objective we must ensure the quality of whole process to let every employees know the importance and values of company’s mission.

With the relation of all above discussion now I will discuss the exact main root of change that what are the places needed change?

Factors of need of change:

Below are the main root that causes the disturbance and these factors need to become changed in Marks and Spencer:

Unclear goals of M&S among the employees

Extra spending and attention of extra curricular activities

Low number of product line

Increase new style fashion

Regular reviewing and monitoring process (Internal Audit)

These are the few points that must be implementing in Marks and Spencer to accomplish its old mission statement.

Change in Management Activities:

As we have discussed that the main problem in marks and Spencer is that their vision towards their business activities is not clear they are focus to treat other activities as their own business activities such as they joined their hand with Oxfam a charity organization and have started campaign to collect the unusable cloths to stop land filling and reselling them with the help of Oxfam. Actually they have distracted from their actual work its not due to some employees activity but this action is being decided and taken by upper level of management.

Now the change is needed in that area to recover the absence and demage to business brand value to complete their uncompleted short term goals to achieve long term goals on decided time until 2020.

Application of Kotter’s Model:

Here kotter’s first step of model of change applies that they needs to create the situation of quick change by considering the current situation of their business as compare to the other competitors they must be able to act as quick as they want to gain the profit from the market businesses. For this they need a strong leadership that would motivate and attract the employees towards the need of urgency because some times employees didn’t focus that what they are doing and they didn’t adopt the change so it is the responsibility of leader to insist them that change is the compulsory thing that needs to be implement. (mind tools, 2010)

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Change in Product Line:

The change is needed in product line where there are very few fashion products they are presenting as compare to their competitors. BY doing SWOT analysis they would come to know the need of new and innovative product that will help them to retain the old customers and by introducing new styles in non food industry they will attract other new customers as well. (Marks and Spencer)

Change in Spending on Extra curricular Activities:

They need to change their perception towards the mind capturing of customers until now they understand that the best way to attract the customers is socialise them on their web site and ask them to give new ideas to win the prizes but these ideas were not so popular and still the reason of spending extra money and time on it.

Application of Short term Wins:

After ensuring the strong leader management need to do a quick review of their planning and find out any barrier that stops their progress towards their goals. After ensuring all tools and techniques than they need to make sure that they are appreciating their employees to get out of them some thing extra to promote their vision and to get the suggestions and new ideas from them.

Change in Fashion Products:

As we have discussed that they are currently in need to attract the customers by introducing new styles and fashion in garments industry to attract more customers from all around the UK so in that case they would able to become the market leader in short term in the UK’s market.

Relation with Marks and Spencer’s Culture:

After ensuring that they have removed the barriers and have created short term wins now they need to change the inner environment of M&S time by time to get the modern techniques and styles in to their organization. That continuous change would remind the employees to give their on suggestions on their short term wins and with that opinions business would be able to act more quickly towards the change.

Key Stake holder at Marks and Spencer:

Now we will discuss the importance of stake holders in any organizations and their need in the companies change strategies and their importance in over all business planning.

Stake holder means a group of person and companies having direct or in direct relation with the company strategies and they are affected with company decision internally or externally.

Suppliers as a key stake holder at M&S:

Supplier at Marks and Spencer are both food and non food products so while making strategic planning it is crucial to take care of their interest in that policies. Suppliers interest could be increase in number of their order so they would get paid more and taking new orders would increase their productivity and profit. With the consent in change in business strategies of suppliers they would able to provide new products and new ideas on time to the customers on the shop and also on online stores and they would get on time door to door delivery.

They also a great impact on environmental by using green factories and transportation while delivering the food and fashion products to the customers at their doors.

Board of Directors at Marks and Spencer:

Board of Directors are those person who have superior power inside the organization and are holding large number of shares and any nay policies effect their interest more badly or positively. So it is vey important to design the change policy in the way in which BOD can easily identify their short term and long term profit of the organization.

Customers of Marks and Spencer:

Their are two types of customers who shop from Marks and Spencer that is in shop customers and other type is Online customers in recent annual report according to M&S they showed the sales figure in which the total 15% of sale from UK was online based that was the huge amount sold from online resources. Now while doing change in organization it is very important to consider the interest of both type of customers to get the highest level of satisfied customers with increasing number of sales.


In some projects govt. is included in the business planning as a stake holder such a charity program that runs nation wide have a great influence of govt. department in it so doing change in policies would effect them badly. So management needs to care their interest as well to protect their long term benefit.

Implementation Process of Model of Change in Marks and Spencer:

Bow we will discuss the need of change and how they implement it in the organization with consent of all other key stake holders. To understand this process easily I have divided these steps in main five steps such as financial and function level and their sub heads with Kotter’s models, etc. The implementation is described in table below:

Model of Change in Marks and Spencer



Starting/Function level

Need To made quick decision on Urgent basis

Strong leadership that leads to strong team work

Process Level

Clear vision on all company’s objective

On regular basis communication with company’s employees

Structure Level

Improve structure level by removing any obstacle

Increase the confidence by awarding them on short term achievement

Marketing Level

Regular working towards change with the help of marketing tools

Innovation/Maturity Level

Daily revision of old achievements and new targets

Progress with practice under supervision

Discussion of above Table of application and implementation:

In Marks and Spencer company have lot of branches inside the UK to make sure that they all act on policies of change at functional level and process level it is necessary to get their strong leadership on them to bring the new and desired change it is due to the research of Kotter’s model of change according to him the need of change only could be generated if the team would have strong coalition and strong leadership. That’s why doing SWOT analysis at this level is also important to get rid of barriers at urgency level, other wise whole process would lead to the company towards unsuccessful change and the interest of stake holders would be damaged.

Yours Truly,

Adnan Jamil


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