Journal of Change Management

Journal Information
ISSN / EISSN : 1469-7017 / 1479-1811
Published by: Informa UK Limited (10.1080)
Total articles ≅ 583
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Latest articles in this journal

, Satu Teerikangas
Published: 6 January 2022
Journal of Change Management pp 1-39;

Despite a plethora of frameworks and processes, in planned organizational change models (POCMs), the role of change organizations, i.e. organizations dedicated to change, remains rarely explored. In this paper, we delve into this subject via a multiple case-based research design studying eleven large Finnish companies via 33 interviews. We find that although all studied case companies bear some component(s) of change organizations, these vary substantially. To this end, our findings bear three contributions. First, we propose a typology on change organizations as consisting of change networks, change teams and individual change roles, incorporating varying dimensions each. We further found three interrelations between these dimensions. Second, we demonstrate that change organizations exist in company practice more than they appear in the POCM literature. Third, we develop a framework for the evaluation of the maturity of a company’s change organization. Going forward, our findings are a call for further research on change organizations and their role in planned organizational change.
Published: 27 December 2021
Journal of Change Management pp 1-28;

Diagnostic and dialogic organization development present two contrasting change practices that are frequently discussed in tandem. Yet, an increasing body of evidence shows they are co-applied in practice. For those involved in leadership of these practices, co-application means switching their engagement, such as commencing with a diagnostic analysis to determine the goals of change, then switching to dialogic processes to foster the emergence of new ways of working. However, theoretical descriptions of these two practices remain bifurcated and, as such, overlook leadership development approaches that help leaders switch between engagement styles. Addressing this problem, this paper explores a leadership development approach that focusses on mindsets. We propose six mindsets from psychology settings that are relevant for leadership of diagnostic and dialogic practices. A key contribution of this work is a new perspective on leadership development. Extending psychology-derived knowledge on how to activate mindsets provides leaders of change practices with a means to increase awareness of, and take control of, their mindset, helping them to adjust their engagement as change contexts dictate.
Published: 16 December 2021
Journal of Change Management pp 1-16;

This conceptual paper draws upon Victor Turner’s understanding of social change as social drama. It develops an interpretive framework for episodic organizational change as a period of liminal transition that is triggered and driven by conflict. Emphasizing the liminal quality inherent in change processes, the social drama is used to generate a conceptual frame to investigate the opportunities and threats in liminal transitions, the various ways to re-establish social order in organizations and the associated role of leaders in liminal times. Promoting conflict’s productive nature for organizational change, the social drama is further used to provide a frame to investigate how social reality in organizations is challenged, developed, crafted, transformed and finally re-constituted through conflict. The article argues that the social drama perspective has the capacity to further reflexive thinking about change processes in organizations.
Published: 16 December 2021
Journal of Change Management pp 1-27;

To meet the adaptive challenges of rapidly changing environments, leaders of organizational teams and team-based entities can leverage the powerful dynamic capabilities of ambidexterity to achieve sustainable innovation and longterm adaptation. This conceptual inquiry focuses on the special characteristics of teams and teamwork, and how those can afford dynamic potential for achieving ambidexterity. Teams intrinsically function dynamically as integrative adaptive systems. Teams hold unique advantages for sensing and seizing new opportunities, and for reallocating taskwork and reconfiguring resources. Such advantages enable teams to more effectively align and balance exploration and exploitation for sustained innovation and successful adaptation. This inquiry draws from existing studies of dynamic capabilities and ambidexterity, and integrates that research with the well-established literature on teams and teamwork. This study examines the key processes and dynamics of team ambidexterity. The study synthesizes, and proposes a systems model that indicates team-centric mechanisms and dynamic linkages by which ambidexterity can operate as dynamic capabilities within teams. The analysis and model add to the development of organizational change theory and orients future studies of ambidexterity at meso level. This inquiry also benefits organizational leaders by providing valuable insights and practical tools for developing, leading, and supporting teams that can perform effectively under turbulent conditions.
, , Miguel Pina e Cunha, Kenneth Dovey
Published: 22 November 2021
Journal of Change Management pp 1-19;

Paradoxical inertia is an organization condition that has received far less attention than organizational change. We investigate, ethnographically, an Australian Intellectual Property service firm, whose Board members proved to be unable to respond strategically to a rapidly changing environment that threatened their organization’s survival. In the face of discontinuous change, this failure to address the management of paradoxes threatening embedded routines reinforced a paralysing inertia. Extant research has emphasized how managers handle paradox; we discuss how they fail to do so. The inertia is derived from the finessing of tensions as non-issues. Constituted as non-issues there were non-decisions about these tensions that maintained internal stability and harmony; they did so, however, in world of change increasingly disrespectful of internal concerns for ongoing professional stability and harmony. The inability to become collectively and critically aware of the specific forms of inertia undermined recursive learning and thus the transformation of the sensemaking practices of the Board.
Shiran Benji-Rabinovitz,
Published: 31 October 2021
Journal of Change Management pp 1-21;

The organisational literature has overlooked the diversity of change agents’ psychological ownership experiences in the context of major (or second-order) change. The present study addressed this lacuna. The study used the case study method and focused on six Israeli state-religious schools, which adopted a new liberal curriculum. Thirty-one semi-structured interviews were conducted with six principals and 25 teachers (middle-level managers and educators). Analysis of the findings revealed the types of psychological ownership that change agents experience (ownership by process, by interest, and by means); two main components of the agents’ psychological ownership (accountability and territoriality); and three perceived types of sharing associated with ownership (active, passive, and defensive). The implications of the findings are discussed. MAD statement Building on a real case study of major change in public schools, the paper describes the varieties of psychological ownership during change implementation. Committed change agents can have different types of ownership experiences, different drives that make them accountable to the change at hand, different territorial outlooks, and different sharing orientations. Three ideal types of psychological ownership experiences are suggested and practitioners can use them to diagnose organisational dynamics and intervene in the process.
, Amy J. Sevier, Russell Willis
Published: 6 September 2021
Journal of Change Management pp 1-19;

Do leaders use sensegiving language in organization-wide planned change announcements? Does sensegiving language prompt organizational support? What contextual factors influence the reception of change announcements? These questions were explored in an analysis of written reorganization announcements across three executive administrations within a university. We found that sensegiving language was used when the reorganization decision was discretionary and when it was inconsistent with the values of shared governance and campus autonomy. Sensegiving language was associated with acceptance of the announcements but only when it was appropriate for the organizational setting. Leadership style appeared to influence internal support independent of language. Our findings suggest that although discursive ability might allow leaders to craft persuasive statements, the delivery of a change message must be consonant with contextual elements that include culture, external environment, organizational atmosphere, and leadership style.
Journal of Change Management pp 1-20;

This article examines organizational identification construction in mergers and acquisitions (M&As). The majority of existing studies have focused on antecedents and outcomes of post-merger identification (PMI) in Western contexts. While more and more Chinese cross-border M&As are taking place, how Chinese employees construct PMI remains underexplored. We adopted a qualitative case study approach to investigate how Chinese managers construct PMI after acquiring a European company. As the main contribution, we introduce the concept of agile organizational identity (AOI), wherein agility is a central, enduring and distinctive characteristic of an organization, i.e. ‘who we are and who we want to be’. Our findings reveal that AOI is leveraged by Chinese managers to deal with their perceived inferior status, help them cope with the change and contribute to the construction of a strong PMI. We believe that our study provides a new perspective on how employees can effectively cope with organizational change while maintaining a sense of identity continuity.
Journal of Change Management pp 1-14;

This paper seeks to find complementarities and make contributions to the field of organization development (OD) from the new field of leadership-as-practice (L-A-P), and in so doing, enhance the development of OD in practice. Rather than looking for leadership in people, especially in their traits and behaviours, leadership-as-practice looks for it in everyday practice, in the spaces between people, and in emergent dynamic social interactions. To find leadership, we look to the practice within which it is occurring. The paper explores these premises by first discussing some of the principal classifications of OD throughout its history. It then offers ways in which L-A-P can potentially enhance OD in both theory and application.
, , Susanne Tafvelin
Journal of Change Management pp 1-19;

This study draws upon conservation of resources theory to investigate if laissez-faire leadership influences employees’ perceptions of role clarity, and two forms of well-being (job satisfaction and work-related burnout), in the context of organizational restructuring. Moreover, role clarity is studied as a mechanism linking laissez-faire leadership to employee well-being. These relationships were tested using a three-wave time-lagged investigation conducted over a two-year period with a sample of 601 employees working in the Swedish process industry. The results of the structural equation modelling analyses showed that laissez-faire leadership was negatively related to role clarity 9 months later. In turn, role clarity mediated the relationship between laissez-faire leadership and employee well-being. This study contributes to the understanding of how laissez-faire leadership in the context of organizational restructuring may affect employee outcomes. We discuss implications for theories and practices, as well as directions for future research.
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