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Artifacts, identification and support for change after an acquisition

Artifacts, identification and support for change after an acquisition Purpose – This paper aims to investigate the extent to which individuals' identification with a changed organizational artifact is associated with their cognitive, behavioral, and affective support for change in the later stages of a change effort, and the role of contextual variables in mediating these relationships. Design/methodology/approach – Primarily quantitative with some qualitative data from an online organization that had acquired the non‐personnel assets of its competitor. Findings – The paper finds that: artifacts can be an important part of employees' perceptions of their organizations; artifact identification is associated with cognitive and behavioral support in the later stages of a change effort; a positive perception of the change mediates between identification and cognitive and behavioral support, and also facilitates affective support; emotional exhaustion is a marginal mediator; and trust towards top managers does not play a mediating role. Research limitations/implications – Future research could study the factors that influence artifact identification. Studies of support for change must address its various dimensions to more accurately assess support. Practical implications – During the later stages of change, managers can foster artifact identification, highlight the positives, and reduce emotional exhaustion to ensure support. Originality/value – This study is one of the first to examine the relationship between artifact identification and support for change in the later stages of a change effort, and the mediating role of contextual factors. In addition, it investigates the multi‐dimensional aspects of support for change, an area that has received limited empirical research attention. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Leadership & Organization Development Journal Emerald Publishing

Artifacts, identification and support for change after an acquisition

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Publisher
Emerald Publishing
Copyright
Copyright © 2011 Emerald Group Publishing Limited. All rights reserved.
ISSN
0143-7739
DOI
10.1108/01437731111161076
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Purpose – This paper aims to investigate the extent to which individuals' identification with a changed organizational artifact is associated with their cognitive, behavioral, and affective support for change in the later stages of a change effort, and the role of contextual variables in mediating these relationships. Design/methodology/approach – Primarily quantitative with some qualitative data from an online organization that had acquired the non‐personnel assets of its competitor. Findings – The paper finds that: artifacts can be an important part of employees' perceptions of their organizations; artifact identification is associated with cognitive and behavioral support in the later stages of a change effort; a positive perception of the change mediates between identification and cognitive and behavioral support, and also facilitates affective support; emotional exhaustion is a marginal mediator; and trust towards top managers does not play a mediating role. Research limitations/implications – Future research could study the factors that influence artifact identification. Studies of support for change must address its various dimensions to more accurately assess support. Practical implications – During the later stages of change, managers can foster artifact identification, highlight the positives, and reduce emotional exhaustion to ensure support. Originality/value – This study is one of the first to examine the relationship between artifact identification and support for change in the later stages of a change effort, and the mediating role of contextual factors. In addition, it investigates the multi‐dimensional aspects of support for change, an area that has received limited empirical research attention.

Journal

Leadership & Organization Development JournalEmerald Publishing

Published: Aug 30, 2011

Keywords: Artifacts; Identification; Support for change; Trust; Emotional exhaustion

References