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.


Business Magazine - Change management


Do the Preparation task first. Then read the Text. Next go to each Task and do the activity.

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.




Hello juanduarte,

Thank you for spotting this! It is, of course, a mistake and I have now corrected it.

Thanks again.


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

That's a good lesson.

Hello! I could not do task 2, could you tell me what problem it is, thanks

Hello Stan,

Could you please tell me what the problem is, in other words, what happens? It would also be helpful to know what kind of device you're using. I just did the exercise from my computer with no problem.

Best wishes,
The LearnEnglish Team


I'am just wondering if you could give me a hint about precise meaning of
expression: It's proving hard to ... (track down the person...).

thanks a lot in advance

Hello marysia34,

"it's proving hard" is basically another way of saying "it's hard" or "it's turning out to be hard" - often this is said when someone didn't expect it to be so difficult to do something.

Best wishes,

The LearnEnglish Team

Changes often fail due to the conflict of interest between managers, reluctant to change from employees and poor planning and implementation for changes.
It is inevitable to change in this fast-pace business environment, companies should identify their needs for change and set up a comprehensive plans and procedures to implement the changes effectively and efficiency.

My name is Filiz I did not understand how to select the most appropriate words for the gaps in the text. I could not manage that. Can anyone explain what to do, please?

Hello Filiz,
I'm not quite sure what the problem is. Is it that you don't know what to do or that you know what to do, but find it too difficult? You just have to start with the first gap 'depends on [1] in the organisation,' and decide which word or phrase can go in that gap.
Best wishes,
The LearnEnglish Team

I'm Hoang Anh, from Vietnam. I'm a new member of the community and I'm very glad to see every people in the site. At present, I am trying to learn English to joined global company based in Vietnam. I hope I can learn more English here and have an oppotunity to meet people to exchange idea, contact and pratice english together to improve english. But how to contact with other member directly while the ruler is not avaiable? I mean that we can contact by Skype or Yahoo or email and so on. Please give me some advices? Thanks you.