Working with Toshiba, Lewin and Dewey: a journey into the heart of change

Eastman, Christine (2012) Working with Toshiba, Lewin and Dewey: a journey into the heart of change. Higher Education, Skills and Work-based Learning, 2 (2). pp. 132-140. ISSN 2042-3896

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Purpose - Our primary focus during that time was to explore how critical thinking could hone self-awareness in order to enable the students to drive change within their own teams, business sections and across the business. Furthermore, by using the tenets of Lewin and Dewey in order to pursue change in management (guided by the former) and to underpin our own pedagogy (from the latter), we would argue that the students were appearing to hold the kind of ethical framework they needed to design an action plan with short and medium term goals that could effectively influence their respective teams. Lewin and Dewey are timely philosophers to remind us how to engage with others ethically and facilitate change without abandoning our moral responsibility or eschewing such concepts of accountability, community and individuality.
Design/methodology/approach - Students were given a workbook, information on course expectations and handouts on referencing and other key graduate skills. The workbook contained exercises on action centred leadership, emotional intelligence, change and innovation, appreciative inquiry and how to compile a log book/learning diary. In order to achieve a Diploma in Facilitating Change, students were assessed against the following learning outcomes: • Explore local and strategic influences and prevailing cultures that impact upon the change process in your area • Analyse selected change facilitation models that you have used to introduce and facilitate change and provide a rationale for selected approaches • Appreciate the ethical issues that may arise when leading change • Reflect upon the processes of becoming a change agent and design an action plan with short and medium term goals that could effectively influence your team • Select and evidence effective communication strategies you have used for different audiences • Demonstrate the application of change agent leadership skills and reflect upon the consequent impact upon your practice • Identify future personal and professional development skills required in relation to facilitating change
Findings - It is obvious that Dewey promotes democratic societies. Implicitly, he emphasises such present day values as clear communication, strong responsibility and the development of individuals to the utmost of their potential. The students/employees at Toshibatec all wrestled with the question of where the company was and what development they desired and were prepared to work for. They recognised that, in each doing their own work, they were contributing to the enrichment of their own lives in the company and of the company itself. They eschewed low expectations for high ideals.
Originality/value - The originality of the case study is that, as far as I know, no research has been undertaken either by this company or on this company before. Its findings will be interesting for the company and for working practice perhaps to be disseminated to other companies looking to make deep and lasting changes.

Item Type: Article
Research Areas: A. > Work and Learning Research Centre
Item ID: 9097
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Date Deposited: 18 May 2012 07:53
Last Modified: 13 Oct 2016 14:24

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