Stressful Organizational Change: the Role of Support in Coping

Smollan, R
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European Group for Organizational Studies (EGOS)

Support from various sources inside and outside the organization helps employees cope with the stress of work. Support becomes even more necessary when the processes and outcomes of organizational change place an extra burden on staff.

This article presents and explores a model of support though different phases of stressful organizational change. The findings of a qualitative study of 31 participants in a public healthcare authority in New Zealand reveal that support took various forms (emotional, instrumental, informational and appraisal) and was sourced through contacts inside and outside the organization at different stages of the change. However, for some participants it was either denied to them or they were reluctant to mobilize it. Implications for research and practice focus on the provision of forms of support that enhance individual wellbeing and the likelihood of successful change.

Coping; Organizational change; Qualitative; Stress; Support
EGOS Colloquium, Organizing in the Shadow of Power, Naples, Italy, July 7–9, 2016 (Sub-theme 29)
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