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The Impact of Organizational Change


A company’s ability to adapt and grow with the times depends on its ability to drive organizational transformation. An organization can undergo internal or external changes. For example, geopolitical, financial, environmental, technical, and sociocultural factors influence a corporation’s adaptation to today’s globe. When a company recognizes the need for a change, it may utilize various methods to execute that change successfully. The demands of the organization determine the kind of change model. It’s not simple to bring about these changes since they need a great deal of forethought, various techniques, and several execution stages (Cameron & Green, 2019). Abercrombie & Fitch is a company that has adapted successfully to external developments during the last five years. Models of institutional, individual, and organizational change are used to characterize the organization’s transformation. That’s why this article aims to illustrate how changes in an organization affect the people who work there as well as their impact on the environment and the company’s bottom line.

Abercrombie and Fitch

One of the various apparel brands is Abercrombie and Fitch (A&F). David Abercrombie was the company’s first employee. The company’s first focus was outdoor gear for fishing, camping, and hunting. As a result of his 1904 investment, Fitch has become well-known for dressing world leaders and visionaries alike. Despite this, the brand has changed over the years and sells clothing for all ages. Abercrombie & Fitch and Hollister are two of the company’s subsidiaries specializing in high-end children’s clothing. The firm presently has headquarters in Shanghai, the United States, and London after multiple expansions throughout the globe. Advertising efforts for Abercrombie and Fitch were well-known for their sexualized nature. Their items were advertised with nearly naked models. On the other hand, the corporation altered its advertising strategy and stopped utilizing almost bare models. Rather than using sexually-charged advertisements, which had been effective in the 1990s, the corporation used descent models and included diversity within the organization.

At the time, one of Abercrombie & Fitch’s goals and visions is to develop a culture that is inclusive of a wide range of people and features a diverse range of experiences. In 2009, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission filed a lawsuit against Abercrombie & Fitch Company on behalf of Samantha Elauf. The lawsuit was filed against Abercrombie & Fitch Company. Samantha is the one who filed the complaint on our behalf. Samantha Elauf contends that the group is in violation of Title VII, which requires organizations to provide “reasonable accommodations” for the religious views of its members (King, 2016). Samantha has sent in her application to the organization in the event that they have a position open for a sales consultant. Samantha asserts that the reason the company did not approve her application is because she was draped in a headscarf during the interview.

A headscarf was also deemed inappropriate by the business because it violated the industry’s dress standards, which required all employees to dress in a traditional eastern-coast college manner. The Supreme Court resolved the dispute by granting certiorari (King, 2016). According to a press release from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, Abercrombie & Fitch Company is being sued by the agency for discrimination against female employees. Some of the organization was also sued for neglecting to respect religious views and disabilities in numerous other disputes. The departure of Mike Jefferies in 2014 set the stage for a new era of leadership. Bruce Weber was in charge of the renowned catalog that included naked models and was responsible for many of the business’s alterations there. As the organization’s face, the corporation decided to go with Matt Jones, the photographer who now works there. Matt Jones is known for his preference for models that are restrained and dress appropriately.

Additionally, the Abercrombie & Fitch Company does not hire people based on the person’s outward attractiveness as a factor in the employment process. Further, the corporation revised its rules about appropriate attire. It also removed the hyper-sexualized graphics off its credit cards, stores, and shopping bags, making it possible for its personnel to wear proper formal clothing. At the moment, the organization focuses on enhancing its goods rather than its logo, and it seeks to hire individuals from various backgrounds.

Organizational Change Model

There are three parts to the change model: objectives, delivery, and personnel. Developing objectives necessitates communicating the ultimate outcomes while maintaining the company’s integrity. A change’s human component refers to improving worker incentives, removing opposition, generating harmony, and harmonizing the difference with the company’s cultural norms (Cameron & Green, 2019). In addition, delivery entails administration, coordinating resources, interconnectedness, prioritization, and reporting. Abercrombie & Fitch’s organizational transformation is also linked to the three elements of the model for organizational change. The company aims to cultivate and disseminate a vision of inclusivity and diversity that values, empowers, and encourages customers and associates to have a good impact on the community. Therefore, the firm can build a culture that is authentic to all people by elevating the culture of the model, from nudist to adequately clothed.

In addition, the Abercrombie & Fitch Company minimizes opposition to change by making certain that the intended change is in keeping with the culture of the company. The employees’ motivation to adjust their work habits as a result of this is increased. The company is able to give delivery via the implementation of control, such as modifying the dress code regulation so that it is more conducive to the needs of the workers. Additionally, the management of interlinkages via inclusion and diversity provides support for activities that completely integrate shareholders, employees, customers, and members of society on both a local and a global scale.

The rationale for Choosing the Model

A firm’s needs should guide its choice of transformation models. The Abercrombie & Fitch Company’s business depends on sociocultural and geopolitical shifts. The eight-step method to organizational change developed by John Kotter is fundamental for every organization’s diagnosis and execution planning. As a result of John Kotter’s eight-step approach, businesses will be better equipped to cope with today’s more difficult and novel market conditions (Kotter, 2007). Moreover, Lewin’s force field analysis and resistance to change model are concepts in picking a potential change by determining the drive that may remove or reduce the restrictive industry (Burnes & Cooke, 2013). The four degrees of change outlined by Dunphy and Stace focus on leadership and environmental factors, both of which play an important part in the transformational process (Cameron & Green, 2019).

In addition, the capability to categorize change according to the extent to which it can be implemented may be credited to Hope-Hailey and Balogun’s change model. This model is responsible for the development of this capability. One of the primary distinctions that can be seen between a reactive change model and a proactive change model is the degree to which the former is dependent on the latter. Change will always take the shape of reactive change whenever it is stressed, but if change is wanted, it will take the form of proactive change. To alter one’s strategy, however, necessitates the formulation of new short-term strategic goals (Cameron & Green, 2019). Alterations to the strategic plan are scheduled to take place over a protracted period of time. A framework that is integrated with external factors in order to align with internal organizational systems, such as cultural, technical, and political structures, is one of the several forms of change.


To define the organization’s transformation, it is essential to look at the three elements of institutional change: personnel, service, and purpose. Abercrombie and Fitch improved organization diversity and credibility. Due to Mike Jefferies’ controversial statements, Abercrombie & Fitch has also suffered long-term effects. The CEO’s comments had a detrimental influence on the reputation and profitability of businesses. A brand refresh that accommodates individuals of all exterior looks has helped the firm rank thanks to the institutional reform. Alterations to the structure of a company are unavoidable. For a business to successfully implement changes, the industry must choose an appropriate change model suitable for the business’s requirements. The Abercrombie & Fitch Company was forced to adapt due to factors beyond its control, including lawsuits alleging bigotry. Therefore, because the firm’s transition involves geopolitical, ecological, financial, and sociological pressures, the three components of institutional transformation fit with the model of change that the Abercrombie & Fitch Company employs.


Burnes, B., & Cooke, B. (2013). Kurt L Lewin’s Field Theory: A Review and Re‐evaluation. International journal of management reviews15(4), 408-425.

Cameron, E., & Green, M. (2019). Making sense of change management: A complete guide to the models, tools, and techniques of organizational change. Kogan Page Publishers.

King, E. (2016). EEOC v. Abercrombie & Fitch Stores, Inc.: Religious accommodation in the workplace. Berkeley J. Emp. & Lab. L.37, 327.

Kotter, J. P. (2007). Leading change: Why transformation efforts fail. In Museum Management and Marketing (pp. 20-29). Routledge.


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