Heart, Mind and Action: Investigating Resistance to Change
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- Master of Science 
Organizations are continually confronted with the need to implement changes in order to compete, prosper and survive. Therefore, understanding what makes a change implementation successful or not is crucial. This study investigates the relationship between an individual’s internal inclination to resist change and affective, behavior and cognitive resistance to change. We further propose that this relationship is moderated by a relatively new concept, Perceived Perspective Taking. We distributed one web-based questionnaire to employees (n = 373) at a large Scandinavian bank that had recently gone through a comprehensive office move, which involved moving all employees into another building. The employees also switched from designated working spaces, to open working spaces with “first come, first serve” policy. Based on the valid responses obtained (n = 125), three hierarchical regression analyses were conducted. We found a direct positive relationship from dispositional resistance to all three forms of resistance to change. A moderating effect of perceived perspective taking was only found for the relationship between dispositional resistance and cognitive resistance. However, this effect was not sustained when controlling for trust and gender. The results confirm Dispositional Resistance to Change as predictor of all three dimensions of change, and thus also the view of resistance to change as a tridimensional construct. Although no decisive effect was found from perceived perspective taking, our research contributes to the exploration of a fairly new concept in organizational research. In light of these findings we discuss theoretical contributions, limitations, directions for future research and implication for practice.
Masteroppgave(MSc) in Master of Science in Leadership and Organizational Psychology - Handelshøyskolen BI, 2016