Psychologist Kenneth Craig suggested that individuals build small complex models to anticipate events in reality. It is a representation of reality, intuitively perceived by an individual. AAA Transportations and its employees, Vernon and Bud, are having a conflict between each others individual mental models. Vernon, the driver supervisor, and Bud, a corporate worker, have been working for AAA Transportations for over 20 years.
Vernon and Buds mental models are based on the long-term knowledge and understanding of the companies market as well as its organizational goals. A different approach is taken by the new owners, they believe that in order for the company to flourish it must become more efficient and also must expand its market. Their mental models are of more business achievement. They are not interested in the existing state of the business and they do not share the same mindset of its employees.
Although both parties do not agree, the new owners understand that the support of the companies employees is essential to the business achievement. The company must attempt to change the mindset of the two members of the company, Vernon and Bud. In order for AAA Transportations to achieve its new goals common mental models must be implemented to its employees for it to be successful. It is highly important for AAA Transportations to make every effort to gain the support of key employees of their organization to idealize the new goals.
AAA Transportations does not wish to cause disturbance within the employees by terminating those who do not agree with its new business direction. Instead AAA Transportations goal is to adjust the mental models in which Vernon and Bud see the organization and its goals. Recognizing the limits of existing models, testing the models in the changing environment, overcoming challenges of the new model, and implementing the new model. These four steps are highly needed in order for Vernon and Bud to start thinking a different way within the company.
First step, recognizing the limits of existing models. The new owners of AAA Transportations can show its employees the lack of growth for the company and its employees if it remains in the same business structure. By doing this Vernon and Bud will be able to see that the company would not have the possibility of achieving more with this they could see the possible loss of profit with the empty space in the trucks. Step two, testing the models in changing environment. The existing and new models must be tested to challenge the changing factors in the company.
For example the rise of gas prices or the rise of produce prices. Vernon and Bud will be able to see that as the company faces these challenges the business must gain substantial profit in order to cover the costs. Step three, overcoming the challenges of the new model. Challenges within the new model must be overcome in order to gain support of key employees. Vernon and Bud must be able to see that the company must expand for greater achievement. For that same reason Vernon and Bud must be fully educated on the new model and the new goals for AAA Transportations.
Clear communication within the company must be implemented so that employees are aware of the goals of the company. Another challenge the new owners face is that they must earn the trust of its employees. The new owners must be able to show that the better-being of the employees is also there goal. By this step, Vernon and Bud agree on the new business model. Because they are key employees, support from other employees will begin to become greater. AAA Transportations must implement the five forces that influence mental models. Education, training, rewards and incentives, influence of others, and personal experience.
Education is highly important for the company to reach success. Miscommunication or misunderstanding can hold a huge burden to reach success. Without education or formal training employees will not have the essential tools to understand the new goals of AAA Transportations. Therefore employees may not form similar mental models of that of the new business direction. Rewards and incentives. If AAA Transportations goals are to gain greater profits for higher wages for its employees, the employees have an incentive and motivation to implement the new model into the the company.
The influence of others and personal experience are not controlled by AAA Transportations. Vernon and Bud would now be the key players to influence other employees. Because of their long-time association with the company Vernon and Buds opinion of the new goals are essential to influence other employees in the company. Finally, AAA Transportations must live up to its word. As Employees begin to see the advantages of the new model, they begin to support the initiative. Thus employees lead to positive experiences of the new model.