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The importance of supervisor support for a change initiative: An analysis of job satisfaction and involvement

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Abstract:

Purpose ‐ Although organizations change on a regular basis, much of what we know about the impacts of organizational change can best be described as macro-level information. Only recently have scholars begun to examine the impact of organizational change at the level of the individual employee (i.e. micro level). The purpose of this paper is to assess the importance of a supervisor's support for a change initiative in relation to employee job satisfaction and job involvement. Design/methodology/approach ‐ This research made use of archival data. Police officers (n=88) were randomly selected from across the USA to complete phone interviews meant to assess, in part, supervisor support for a change from traditional policing to community policing, job satisfaction, and job involvement. Findings ‐ While supervisor support for the change initiative was found to be related to job satisfaction and job involvement, job satisfaction mediated the supervisor support-job involvement relationship. Research limitations/implications ‐ The major limitation of this study is its small sample, which precluded the use of more advanced statistical techniques (i.e. structural equation modeling). The major implication is that both employees and the organization stand to benefit during a change initiative if the supervisor demonstrates his or her support for the initiative. Originality/value ‐ This research is of value given the prevalence of organizational change and the need for more research examining the impact of change on micro-level issues.

Keywords: Change management; Employees behaviour; Involvement; Organizational change; Police; Satisfaction; Support; United States of America

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1108/19348831111173432

Publication date: October 11, 2011

mcb/ijoa/2011/00000019/00000004/art00003
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