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Achieving organisational change through values alignment

Christopher M. Branson (St Francis College, Crestmead, Australia)

Journal of Educational Administration

ISSN: 0957-8234

Article publication date: 9 May 2008




The purpose of this paper is to, first, establish the interdependency between the successful achievement of organisational change and the attainment of values alignment within an organisation's culture and then, second, to describe an effective means for attaining such values alignment.


Literature from the fields of organisational change, organisational culture, philosophy, psychology, and values theory is reviewed in order to develop and test the hypothesis that successful organisational change can only occur when those affected by the change are able to willingly commit to an agreed set of values aligned with the accomplishment of the organisation's new outcomes. The paper then presents and reports on a trial of a simple and effective framework for achieving such values alignment in an organisation.


This paper supports the view that the currently acknowledged widespread resistance to organisational change is caused by a failure of current organisational change strategies to attend to a values alignment process for all those people affected by the desired change. Moreover, this paper proposes that values alignment may not just be an important integral part of organisational change strategies; it could well be the bedrock, the foundation, on which all truly successful organisational change depends.

Practical implications

The values alignment process presented in this paper provides a very effective and efficient means for enabling people to discern, discuss, and actively support those values that will help the organisation to make desired changes. In essence, this process enables the alignment between personal and organisational values to occur and, thereby, allowing the organisation to evolve and remain viable.


The paper provides a unique perspective on the important process of values alignment within any truly successful organisational change strategy.



Branson, C.M. (2008), "Achieving organisational change through values alignment", Journal of Educational Administration, Vol. 46 No. 3, pp. 376-395.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2008, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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