This assignment puts you in the role of change manager. You will take on the role of internal change agent
for a hypothetical organisation that is planning a significant restructuring, and you will analyse options for
using HRM concepts and practices to manage the change. Part 1 of this assignment asks you to analyse
the cultural, ethical and CSR implications of the planned organisational change. For your Assignment,
choose from one of the following scenarios:
�A manufacturing company has recently acquired two new subsidiaries that manufacture new product
lines, each in a different country.
�A global chain of coffee shops is closing fifteen of its locations in six different countries, but is
expanding into two new countries with eight new locations.
�A large, multinational banking and finance company has decided to outsource its technical support and
helpdesk functions, eliminating the internal departments that handle these functions. At the same time,
the company is hiring an outside vendor to develop an online self-service portal that staff can access to
answer the most basic technical support questions.
�Instead of choosing one of these scenarios, you may create your own; obtain approval on your
scenario from your Instructor before proceeding with the assignment.
HRM.W9.ASS: Analysis of cultural, ethical and CSR implications of the planned
Change in any organization is inevitable and adopting appropriate strategies is important
to ensure successful change management. Appropriate HRM concepts and practices come in
handy in the process of managing change. Various aspects require consideration when
contemplating or planning significant restructuring such as culture, ethics and Corporate Social
Responsibility (CSR). Therefore, the paper uses Toyota Company to provide an analysis of
various factors such as culture, ethics and CSR and their implications on planned change of
acquiring new subsidiaries that will manufacture new products lines in two different countries.
Toyota is a multinational company that manufactures automobiles. The company has
recently acquired two more subsidiaries that manufacture new product lines in two countries as
an initiative to expand and to accrue huge profits. The company headquarter is in Tokyo at
Toyota City but has regional offices in UK, US and other countries. The employees of the
company are approximately 320,000. Kiichiro Toyota founded the company in 1937 to create
automobiles (Toyota. Com, 2015). Since then, it has grown steadily to earn its status. The
company is headed by a president who oversees its operations. The company’s vision and
strategic goals are to create outstanding products that will promote sustainable growth. The
company is committed to honoring the laws, cultures and customs of all the nations in which it
operates. It aims to remain the leading automobile in the future and take the largest market share
of the automobiles in the countries of its operations.
Culture is the beliefs or ideologies held by individuals or certain groups of individuals.
These behaviors or beliefs are not biological but learned from environment and passed to
generations. It is therefore important for any organization that restructures or implements change
to consider the cultural aspects that will affect their operations (Church 2014). Every country has
its own national culture and therefore, Toyota must beware of this to ensure that its culture does
not clash with the host country. Examples of national culture the company might face is the
language, national values, company registration process, tax and other legal regulations in the
country among many others (Parker 2000). For instance, the national language that the host
country speaks may be different from that of the company that wants to set a subsidiary (Black,
2003). This therefore may lead to challenges in communication and would require the company
to recruit officers that are proficient in the language spoken by the host country. National values
as well may differ between the two countries something that may cause misunderstanding
between the two countries. The process of registration of a company may also differ in terms of
the time and the requirements for eligibility. This may also cause challenges that may require the
two parties to enter into negotiations to agree on the terms. Organizations as well have their own
culture or rather their way of functioning. Organizational cultures normally vary from one
company to another. It therefore becomes prudent for the company to understand its culture to
ensure that it delivers its services and products better. Organizational culture is based on various
factors such as the company’s history, organizational structure, ownership, critical business
incidence, technology and environments, dressing codes, among many others. The organizational
culture should reflect the needs of the customers and stakeholders. In this case, it is therefore
apparent that the company will face a number of organization cultural issues such as, changes in
relating with people, dressing code changes, time management challenges and leadership
problems because of the structure of the organization among many others. The company may as
well require training of its staffs in the country to equip them with relevant skills to execute their
tasks as the organization wants.
Business ethics is important part in any business as it enables adherence to good
behaviors. Any business whether small or large must adhere to ethics when dealing with its
customers, staffs, competitors and other stakeholders. Adhering to ethical standards allows a
business to grow as it embraces healthy competition (Papa et al. 2008). Toyota is as well likely
to experience ethical issues related to staff and stakeholders as it expands its subsidiaries in these
two countries. One of the ethical issues is poor quality of products. The company may deliver
products that are of low quality to sell them at low prices to win over the competitors hence,
unethical practice. Another ethical issue is denial of staffs to form unions to fight for their rights.
The company may not permit unions hence denying the staffs their rights. The other ethical issue
is poor working condition coupled with low salaries and long working hours (Vanhala & Ahteela
2011). The company may focus on profitability without thinking about the welfare of the
workers. This is unethical as it infringes on the rights of the staffs. Other ethical issues likely to
surface in the company are favoritism in providing employment opportunities to staffs and
involvement in corruption to win over contracts and to get favors from various institutions.
The corporate social responsibility concept has gained more approval in many
organizations. Organizations nowadays voluntarily take part in initiatives to ensure that the
society they operate in benefits from their activities (Owazuaka & Obinna 2014). The company
as well has become committed to ensuring a safer and cleaner environment. Companies need to
be sensitive to the needs of their stakeholders even as they pursue their operations (Labbai 2007).
The company will therefore be expected to work closely with the community. It will have to
support the local communities by giving them opportunities to work in the company in various
departments. The company must take part in the environmental conservation initiatives (Angus-
Leppan, Metcalf & Benn 2010). It will be obliged to put in place measures that will reduce
negative impacts to the environment as it carries on with its operations. Furthermore, it needs to
manufacture safe and quality products for the consumers. The products will require testing and
verification by the consumer watch bodies in the countries to ensure that they meet the standards.
The company as well will be expected to get involved in charitable contributions, among other
Human resource has the responsibility to ensure that the organization has the right
people and systems to make the process function smoothly. In change initiatives, human resource
management plays a critical role in many ways. It ensures that appropriate strategies are adopted
such as recruitment of staffs to ensure that the process succeeds (Bloom, Genakos, Sadun & Van
Reenen 2012). Ethical, cultural and corporate social responsibilities issues are important aspects
to consider when restructuring an organization. In this case, these issues have implications for
the staffs and the HR functions as they contribute to the success and achievement of the
organization objectives and goals. One of the implications is that, HR must come up with the
best plans to ensure efficient and smooth transition. Recruitment of staffs is also very important.
The process should be fair and free and should consider cultural aspects. The staffs that have the
right qualifications should be retained. Diversity must manifest in the recruitment process to
avoid future resentments and complaints. The vision of the company as well must be maintained
through adoption of best practices throughout the process of change. Staffs should get better
salaries that resonate with their skills and their levels of input. The working condition must be
good and the products must be of high quality. The company as well stands to gain approval and
to build positive image if it participates in CSR.
Angus-Leppan T, Metcalf, L, & Benn, S 2010, ‘Leadership styles and CSR practice: an
examination of sense making, institutional drivers and CSR leadership’, Journal of
Business Ethics, vol. 93 no. 2, pp. 189-213.
Black, R 2003, Organizational Culture: Creating the Influence Needed for Strategic Success,
Bloom, N, Genakos, C, Sadun, R, & Van Reenen, J 2012, ‘Management Practices Across Firms
and Countries’, Academy of Management Perspectives, Vol. 26 no. 1, pp. 12-33.
Church, N 2014, ‘Impact of culture on retail industry compliance’, Journal of Business & Retail
Management Research, Vol. 9 no. 1, pp. 89-97.
Labbai, M 2007, ‘Social Responsibility and Ethics in Marketing’, Paper presented at the
International Marketing Conference on Marketing & Society, 8-10 April, 2007, IIMK
Owazuaka, W & Obinna, I 2014, ‘Corporate social responsibility: the marketing implications’,
International Journal of Academic Research, Vol. 6 no. 4, pp. 221-226.
Parker, M 2000, Organizational Culture and Identity, London: Sage.
Papa, M., et al. 2008, Organizational Communication Perspectives and Trends (4th Ed.). Sage
Toyota. Com 2015. About us. Retrieved from: http://www.toyota-global.com/company/
Vanhala, M, & Ahteela, R 2011, ‘The effect of HRM practices on impersonal organizational
trust’, Management Research Review, Vol. 34 No. 8,,pp. 869-888