A Perception-Based View of the Employee: A Study of Employees’ Reactions to Change

As wirtten in one of my last posts, I want to feature some great dissertations on Change, here on my Blog. This time I would like to present you “A Perception-Based View of the Employee: A Study of Employees’ Reactions to Change” by Chaiporn Vithessonthi.

Drawing on several theoretical perspectives (e.g., individual motivation, behavioral decision-making, social exchange theories, organizational justice theories, social cognition, institutional theories and neoclassical economics theories) from different disciplines (e.g., organizational psychology, strategic management, and economics), this dissertation developed a perception-based approach to examine a possibility that employees’ perceptions and/or attitudes will be associated with their decisions in an organizational setting. Specifically, this dissertation examined the effects of employees’ perceptions and/or attitudes on their reactions to organizational change.

This dissertation addressed two major research questions relevant to organizational change management, organizational behavior and applied psychology. First, it addressed a question of what perceptions and/or attitudes influence employees’ resistance to change. Second, it addressed a question of what perceptions and/or attitudes influence employees’ support for change? This was done by drawing on several theoretical perspectives and examining relationships between perception and/or attitude variables and resistance to change and support for change.

Based on data obtained from two samples of respondents from two different settings (i.e., a downsizing in Study 1 and a privatization in Study 2), this dissertation found significant relationships between perceptions and/or attitudes and resistance to change and/or support for change. The findings provide some empirical support for the perception-based view of the employee. Using multinomial ordered probit modeling, some perceptions and/or Resistance to Change were found to be significantly predictive of employees’ reactions to change. The potential practical value of using perceptions and/or Resistance to Change as predictors of employees’ reactions to change is discussed, as are implications and suggestions for future research.

You can download the entire dissertation in English language, here: Vithessonthi,_Chaiporn_(2005)_-_A_Perception-Based_View_of_the_Employee_A_Study_of_Employees’_Reactions_to_Change


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