Two complementary objectives are addressed in this paper. First, several studies are introduced based on the assumption that organizational change is now excessive. The purpose of this paper is to propose an operational definition to change excessiveness, and the authors assess whether it is a generalized phenomenon at a societal level. Second, these studies are habitually mobilizing coping theories to address their purpose. However, an integrated model of coping, including appraisals and coping reactions towards change is still to be tested. Thus, the assessment is anchored in an application of the Stimulus-Response Theory of Coping (SRTC).
A quantitative study is conducted by administering questionnaires to a nationwide representative sample (n=1,002). Anderson and Gerbing (1991) two-step approach is used to validate the study and tests its hypothesized model. Change excessiveness is measured in order to observe if it is a generalized phenomenon in the working population. Its effects on coping are modelled through the fully mediated SRTC. Therefore, the hypothetical model predicted that the relationships between the perception of excessive change contexts and negative coping reactions is fully mediated by negative appraisals towards change contexts.
Perceptions of excessive change is a normally distributed and a statistically centralized phenomenon. As hypothesized, an structural equation modelling test of the SRTC shows a full mediation effect of negative appraisal between change intensity and negative coping to change.
This paper empirically tests a nationwide sample where organizational change may be too excessive for individuals’ positive coping. It is the first to generalize the observation of change excessiveness as perceived by employees to a nationwide level. Moreover, it addresses the gap between change excessiveness and coping theories in modelling the SRTC through its three components: event, appraisals, and coping reactions. Finally, it presents managerial discussions towards the strategic necessity for organizational change and its potential “too-much-of-a-good-thing” effects.
Johnson, K., Bareil, C., Giraud, L. and Autissier, D. (2016), "Excessive change and coping in the working population", Journal of Managerial Psychology, Vol. 31 No. 3, pp. 739-755. https://doi.org/10.1108/JMP-12-2014-0352Download as .RIS
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