The Supremacy of the Sequence: Key Elements and Dimensions in the Process of Change
AbstractHow single organizations manage the process of change and why only some of them are able to actually reach radical change are central questions in today’s theoretical debate. The role played by the process of change and its dimensions (namely, pace, sequence and linearity), however, has been poorly investigated. Drawing on archetype theory, this paper explores: (i) whether a specific pace of radical change exists; (ii) whether different outcomes of change are characterized by different sequences of change in key-structures and systems (iii) how the three dimensions of the process of change possibly interact. As an example of organizational change the study takes into consideration processes of accounting change in three departments of two Canadian and two Italian municipalities. The results suggest the supremacy of the sequence of implemented changes over the other two dimensions of the process in order to achieve a radical outcome of change.