Factors that impact the success of an organizational change: a case study analysis

Steven H. Appelbaum (Department of Management, John Molson School of Business, Concordia University, Montreal, Canada and is at Steven H. Appelbaum Consultants, Montreal, Canada.)
Aleksey Cameron (John Molson School of Business, Concordia University, Montreal, Canada)
Floris Ensink (John Molson School of Business, Concordia University, Montreal, Canada)
Jahnabi Hazarika (John Molson School of Business, Concordia University, Montreal, Canada)
Raid Attir (John Molson School of Business, Concordia University, Montreal, Canada)
Rouba Ezzedine (John Molson School of Business, Concordia University, Montreal, Canada)
Varsha Shekhar (John Molson School of Business, Concordia University, Montreal, Canada)

Industrial and Commercial Training

ISSN: 0019-7858

Publication date: 5 June 2017

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate the factors that impact the success of an organizational change within an organization under study.

Design/methodology/approach

Five hypotheses were developed to investigate independent variables as possible factors affecting employees’ commitment to change. The research is based on a three-step process consisting of a literature review and field research through survey and interviews. The literature review served to establish an important foundation for understanding the problem. The field research involved employees taking part in the change completing a survey. Individual interviews were also conducted with management level employees actively involved in the change process. The paper is an empirical-based case analysis.

Findings

The results demonstrate that employees’ commitment to change, in this organization, can be improved through increasing formal and informal communication, creating adaptive organizational systems and enhancing the role of transformational leaders during the change.

Research limitations/implications

Sample size was affected due to the limited availability of employees during a specific organizational cycle. Increased sample size would allow further investigation about employees’ commitment to change. Additional research could be done on how the company’s systems and practices can be adapted to change.

Practical implications

The success of a change project is critical for its future strategy and major project implementation. It is crucial that a systematic process be followed to implement this change. It is suggested that the John Kotter’s “eight” step change management model be adopted as a framework to the implementation plan.

Social implications

New behaviors are subject to degradation if they are not ingrained in social norms and shared values, i.e. if they do not become part of the culture. Managers emphasized that, even though they are creating a new team, they recognize the importance not to create a “Monster” or a new alien culture. Leaders must make sure that all new behaviors required for the integration become part of the existing culture.

Originality/value

The paper provides insight in some of the factors that lead to a successful organizational change and team integration. The paper recommends four steps to address communication, organizational systems and culture to improve employees’ commitment to change.

Keywords

Citation

Appelbaum, S.H., Cameron, A., Ensink, F., Hazarika, J., Attir, R., Ezzedine, R. and Shekhar, V. (2017), "Factors that impact the success of an organizational change: a case study analysis", Industrial and Commercial Training, Vol. 49 No. 5, pp. 213-230. https://doi.org/10.1108/ICT-02-2017-0006

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2017, Emerald Publishing Limited

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