Embracing Change at the Personal and Industry Levels

Dr. Delmonize Smith, RIT professor and president and CEO of D.A. Smith and Associates.

There is no way to hide it—the printing industry is struggling. With Kodak filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy and manroland experiencing its own, we are seeing more and more key players undergoing major structural adjustment. At the commercial printing level, many companies are reassessing current business models and rethinking production operations to gain greater efficiency.

What both situations greatly call for is the uncomfortable issue of change. At RIT, I am currently taking an Organizational Behavior course for my business administration minor. This course has provided valuable insight into the reality of managing and leading an organization. In order to effectively manage and embrace change in the workforce, one must look into human behavior at the individual, group and organizational level.

I would like to welcome my professor Dr. Delmonize “Del” Smith to my blog this week. President and CEO of D.A. Smith and Associates and honoree of Rochester’s Forty Under 40 award, Dr. Smith brings a wealth of information to teaching the next generation of business leaders. Whether you’re a CEO, supervisor or working on the shop floor, we’re here to share how to effectively reduce the resistance to change in order to promote growth in an organization.

Welcome, Dr. Smith.

Fundamentally, what is it about change that leads to so much resistance within people?

Dr. Smith: At its most fundamental level, resistance to change is hard wired into our genetic makeup. As a species, slow changes in our surroundings can be countered with an evolutionary response, but sudden and significant change threatens our very survival.

Are there any potential changes that an organization can afford to ignore?

Dr. Smith: Organizations can’t afford to totally ignore change. However, change that results in a greater fit with the existing organization would not require a significant response. An example that comes to mind is a healthcare company that conducts highly sensitive test on patients. The company already had significant patient privacy policies and procedures in place, so the introduction of far-reaching Healthcare Information Privacy laws would not require major change.

Nick Gawreluk is product manager of integrated solutions at Mimeo. His passion for print has spanned across the globe to South America and Europe in addition to many unique work experiences inside the United States.

He enjoys sharing his insight and involvement within the industry and is always searching for new experiences. Nick’s goal is to lead his generation into the future of the printing industry.
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