Industrial engineers have to take care of comfort of the employees/operators/workers. While the basic focus of industrial engineering is speed, it has to consider the comfort of the operator along with it and any speed improvement in the machine or in human effort should not create any discomfort to the operator.
But a change in method can always create discomfort. The new method has to be learned by the operator. Recently there is a change in fares of taxis and autorickshaws in Mumbai and Thane. The meters are not changed for increase in fares but a new rate card is issued. Because a driver is not familiar with the new fare, he has to consult his card frequently to find the fare. So there is more work now for him. But after some more days, he will remember the computation and he need not consult the card.
Every change initiative goes through that process. The change managers have to assure the operators that the new process does not create any extra trouble for them once it is stabilized and also have to inform the operators the steps that they have taken to make the transition stage also comfortable.
The change management literature has to talk of comfort zone to comfort zone transition. I thought I brought up this idea today (24.10.2010), but I found an article by Nigel Brooks which is already there.
Migrating Through the Change Response Cycle From Comfort Zone to Comfort Zone
May be there are some articles on the idea. I have to find out.
Management knols of Narayana Rao are being collected in focused blog