To survive and prosper, businesses need to be able to change and adapt to internal and external environmental pressures, but there are issues around managing the process of change.


Read the text and then do the exercises.

When you first read the text, don't worry about the numbers in brackets.  You will fill in the gaps in Exercise 1.

A change for the better?

In the world of business, change is inevitable.  Nobody would seriously argue with that, especially at a time when IT developments are sweeping through all areas of work and changing how things are done and who does them.  But when change does come, not everybody agrees on what it means.  How you view change depends on [1] in the organisation, and managers and employees usually have very different perspectives.

If you’re [2], your focus is on results, and you’ll see the change as the best way to realise them.  They are more aware of the business’ overall goals, the financial state of the company and its position with regard to competitors and market share.

When [3] consider introducing change, they ask questions such as, ‘How quickly can it be implemented?’, ‘How will it benefit the company?’, ‘What investment is required?’, ‘How cost effective is the change?’ and ‘How will it affect our customers?’  Since they are usually the advocates of change, managers tend to be more enthusiastic about it.

If you’re [4], however, your focus is more on the immediate task of getting the job done.  They seldom have time to consider how their work fits into the overall scheme of things; they don’t share the broader perspective of the company directors.  Because they are often skilled and experienced in their work, or because they are placed on the frontline dealing with customers on a daily basis, they look at change from a personal perspective.

The questions [5] ask are, ‘How will this effect the quality of my work?’, ‘How much time will it take for me to adapt?’, ‘What’s wrong with the way we’ve always done things?’ and, ultimately, ‘What’s in it for me?’  Since employees are the ones who have to put the change into action, they are usually less enthusiastic about it.

With such different [6] about change within the organisation, it’s not surprising that innovation often fails.  Planned changes need to be carefully thought out and managed.  If not, morale will suffer as people feel that they are being forced to change against their will.   There will surely be resistance, and some highly valued members of staff may even decide it’s time to leave. 

All of this can eventually have a negative effect on productivity and efficiency.  Management will have to admit defeat and drop the change, or risk losing [7] to the competition…and then another great idea bites the dust.

Task 1

Comprehension:  select the most appropriate words for the gaps in the text.


Task 2

Look at some useful words connected with business and change management.   Match each word with the correct definition.


Task 3

Detailed comprehension:  complete the sentences so that they agree with the views in the article.


Language level

Intermediate: B1
Upper intermediate: B2


very good

Good! I hope it help me..

Hi All,
Very good text.can one advice me on how to write good report

Hi Pasan,
Are you asking about reports for class or business reports?
Best wishes,
The LearnEnglish Team

Dear Adam,
Thank you for your response . I am asking about business reports

Hi Pasan,
Writing business reports in English is easier than some people think. They often use the same language again and again.
The first thing to do is to get hold of some good examples, either from the web or, better still, from the business in which you work. Then look at the language they use, noting the most useful parts for your own use. Then try writing your own report, changing the parts that are different for your situation.
We will be adding to the Business section of LearnEnglish in the future and there will be some help there about writing in a business environment.
Best wishes,
The LearnEnglish Team

thanks for your help...british council. that is so useful to me . i want know more of business. thanks very much

Topics in business & work is helpful with me. But I don't see where to learn about writing english skill. Hope to have your share.

my basic problems are:

  1. hearing
  2. pronunciation
  3. building statements in a conversation 

We want to improve our vocabulary how please advice