Change Vs. Development MGT Due: 8/21/2003 The concepts of change and development come up frequently in the fields of business, technology, education, sociology, psychology, and many other fields. These concepts may appear to be the same, or similar, but they are very different concepts. According to Webster's Universal College Dictionary, the definition of change is as follows: "To make different in form; to transform; to exchange for another or others; to give and take reciprocally; to transfer from one to another; to give or get smaller money; to give or get foreign money in exchange for; to remove and replace the coverings or garments of; to become different; to become altered or modified; to become transformed; to transfer between conveyances; to make an exchange; to pass from one phase to another; a replacement or substitution; a transformation or modification; variety or novelty." The synonyms for the word change, as listed in Roget's Desk Thesaurus, are: "alter, modify, make different, adjust, shift, vary, recast, restyle, remodel, reorganize, reform, revolutionize, transfer, transmute, mutate, transform, turn, convert, metamorphose; exchange, replace, substitute, swap, trade, switch, shift, interchange, shuffle, remove and replace; difference, modification, switch, shift, variation, deviation, variety, fluctuation, veering, alteration, conversion, substitution, swapping, reform, reformation, revolution, reorganization, and remodeling." Roget's Desk thesaurus even gives a good definition of the word change: "Change means to make a difference in the state or condition of a thing. To change is to make a material or radical difference or to substitute one thing for another of the same kind." Development, according to Webster's Universal College Dictionary is defined as follows: "The act or process of developing; a significant consequence or event; a developed state or form (maturity); a large group of dwellings; the raising of funds, expansion of activities or opportunities, etc. for an organization or foundation." The synonyms listed for the word development in Roget's Desk Thesaurus are: "progress, growth, evolution, history; event, advance; event, result." The definitions for the words change and development are not the same.
The word change is not a synonym for the word development and the word development is not a synonym for the word change. Because of the definitions and synonyms, they are related to one another, but different. The concept of development deals with the process or result of change. This concept deals with the transformation of something that is already in place, into a mature or improved state or form. For example, you would use personal development skills in order to effect a change in attitude. If you want to have a better attitude, then you would work on your personal skills to reach your goal.
The personal skills, though they may be rough around the edges, are already in place. You just have to develop them. In management, specifically the human resource area, development is usually used in reference to training for the future. You can either train employees for the present job, or you can train them for the future. The training is already in place for the current job, but you have to develop the training program in order to train for the future. You can make changes to your training program, but since it was already in place, you have essentially developed it.
Development is the process or result of change and deals with things that are already in place. The concept of change deals with making something different. A good example of this would be adopting a new software program for your business to replace a program that you already have. This is a change because you are converting from one program to another. You are not making changes that develop the current software already in place. Another example of a change is buying a new car that is different from the one you have.
You are not making alterations to the one you already have, you are purchasing a new and different car. This is a change. Change is to make something materially or significantly different and does not deal with modifying something that is already in place. The definitions that are provided by Webster's Universal College Dictionary for the words change and development are different.
The word change is not a synonym for the word development and the word development is not a synonym for the word change, so they are different. Going back the example regarding the change in software, if a company were to make changes to the software program that was already in place, they would be developing it. If they were to abandon the old software and go with a totally new program, they would be making a change. After they make a change in software, they then would train the employees on how to use it, but since the employees have already had training on the old software, they would be developing the employees by training them for the future use of the new software. Development deals with altering something that is already in place and is usually the process or result of change. Change does not deal with modifying something that is already in place.
Change is to make something materially or significantly different. The concepts of change and development may seem similar because they are related to one another, but they are indeed, quite different. References: Roget's Desk Thesaurus. (2001). New York: RHR Press.
Webster's Universal College Dictionary. (2001). New York. RHR Press..