Federated Co-Operatives Limited: Change Management
(9 pages of text)
In 2013, after almost three years of making organizational changes, the chief executive officer of Federated Co-Operatives Limited (FCL) wondered if he was pushing his unique company through a transformation too quickly or if he was not pushing hard enough to modernize the company. FCL was a co-operative, a remnant of a farmers’ purchasing association that had grown to become one of the 50 largest companies in Canada. However, the company’s financial success and democratic governance structure had lulled FCL into a situation characterized by outdated processes and systems. Information technology, branding, leadership, and talent management processes needed to be transformed, and a culture change was necessary to move forward. But some employees were resisting, possibly as a result of burnout due to the magnitude of change or the co-operative governance structure that complicated the process of change. The chief executive officer needed to address his employees at a questions and answers session about the progress of the transformation. What should he tell them?
This case can be used in any general management course that has modules emphasizing organizational culture and change. Given the level at which the issues are explored, the case may be most useful for senior-undergraduate or graduate-level courses in leadership or strategic human resource management. After completing this case, students will be able to:
- Evaluate change management theories and concepts.
- Become familiar with alternative business models.
- Understand the ambiguity that surrounds decisions during large-scale changes.
- Identify the potential obstacles for this organization and how to overcome them.
Canada, Large, 2013
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