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THE PREDICTOR OF AFFECTIVE COMMITMENT TO CHANGE: ATTITUDE VS INDIVIDUAL READINESS FOR CHANGE.

1. Introduction

In today's swiftly moving business, change is unavoidable or even is the norm. With the pressures from their external and internal environments-shifting business paradigms, economic and legislative changes, globalization, new technologies, and changes in consumer tastes and workforce composition-organizations often have to change the way they do business in order to grow, remain competitive, and even to survive (Herold & Fedor, 2008; Martins, 2008). As a result, change has become one of most important challenges for organizations and for their leaders at all levels. Failure to manage change effectively may reduce organizational effectiveness and employee well-being. Although there are many factors that influence the organizational change effectiveness, such as Context, Content, Process, and Individual Characterictis (Holt, 2007). However, based on various research, the success of change is majority influenced by individual/person involved in the process of change, and the greatest challenge of all comes with the awareness that managing change includes managing reactions to that change.

2. Commitment to Change

The approach to employee commitment has been subsequently adopted by other researchers in the area. According to Herscovitch & Meyer, (2002), Commitment to change as a force (mind-set) that binds an individual to a course of action deemed necessary for the successful implementation of a change initiative. This mind-set can be reflected to varying degree in three dimensions: a) desire to provide support for the change based on a belief in its inherent benefits to change (affective commitment); b). A recognition that there are costs associated with failure to provide support for the change (continuance commitment to change); and c) sense of obligation to provide support for the change (normative commitment to change. In other words, individuals can feel bound to support a change initiative because they want to, have to, and/or ought to.

Commitment to change was influenced by the extent to which a change altered the nature of an employee's job. Conceptualized change as being comprised of three stages: unfreezing, changing, and refreezing. The changing phase is where the actual change is implemented, while the refreezing stage is when the new ways of work are embraced, internalized and institutionalized.

3. Attitudes and Reactions toward Change

When implementing changes in structure, system, or process; individual change has a mediating role because change starts with individual change, and unless the majority of individuals change their attitudes or behaviors, no organizational change occurs (Alas, 2007). Attitudes and behaviors about organizational change are often cited as a crucial factor in determining the success of organizational change (Herold et al., 2007). Attitudes toward organizational change are described as the employee's overall evaluative judgment of the change implemented by his or her organization (Elias, 2009).

Employee attitudes toward organizational change are defined as a continuum ranging from strong positive attitudes (e.g. readiness for change, openness to change) to strong negative attitudes (e.g. cynicism about organizational change, resistance to change) (Bouckenooghe, 2009). Attitudes toward organizational change could be viewed as a complementary to the traditional (bottom line) outcomes, such as survival and profitability (Armenakis and Bedeian, 1999).

The researcher used the concept of Affective Commitment to Change (commitment based on an emotional bond) which was found by Herscovitch and Meyer (2002).

From the Figure 1 above, it can be seen that commitment to change is the highest level of individual change acceptance.

4. Individual Readiness for Change

Individual readiness for change is the comprehensive attitude that simultaneously was influenced by the content (what has been changed), process (how is going to change), context (in what situation that the change is done), and characteristic of individual who involved in the change process (Armenakis et al., 1993), Holt, 2007). According to Hanpachern (1997) measuring Individual Readiness for Change are based on resisting, participating, dan promoting. Resisting is the negative attitude of the individual toward change. Participating is the individual participation in the change process. Promoting is about how far a person would like to implement the change process.

The process of organizational change is unfolding in three phases (Armenakis et al., 1993; Lewin in Armenakis & Harris, 2002). During the first phase, readiness, organizational members become prepared for the change and ideally become its supporters. In the second phase, adoption, the change is implemented and employees adopt the new ways of operating. However, the adoption period is a trial or an experimental period and employees can still ultimately reject the change. The third phase, institutionalization, flows from efforts to maintain the adoption period and reinforce the changes until they become internalized and the norm.

5. Methods and Measures

5.1 Sample

Respondents (N=54) were chosen by Convenience Sampling, with the characteristics as follows: permanent employees of state owned government organizations, who have been working for at least 2 years in the organizations, age above 18 years old, and has a bachelor degree.

5.2 Measurements

The data were taken using the scale of Affective Commitment to change (Herscovith & Meyer, 2002), Individual Readiness for Change (Armenakis), and Attitude toward Change. The scales have been translated and slightly modified into Indonesian Language. All the three scales are using 6 Scales Likert Type. All the instruments have been tested its validity and reliability.

5.3 Data Analysis

Data were analyzed using Multiple Regression and Partial Correlation Methods.

6. Results

The results of the reseach show that both Attitude toward Change and Individual Readiness for Change are positively correlated with Individual Commitment to Organizational Change.

Furthermore, it also shows that the correlation between Attitude toward Change and Individual Commitment to Change is lower compares to the score of correlation between Individual Readiness for Change. It also shows that 35.5% from the score of Individual Readiness for Change (which is just slightly higher compare to the Attitude toward Change) contributed to the emergence of Individual Commitment to Change. From the results it can be concluded that not only Individual Readiness for Change that contributes to the emergence of Commitment to Change, as they are still 64.5% are influenced by other factors.

7. Discussion and Conclusions

This result shows that both reaction and readiness to change are important to Commitment to Change, although readiness is slightly stronger. It is assumed that both positive reaction and readiness can be regarded as predictor to acceptance to change, and/or affective commitment to change. However, just like previous studies about the importance of individual readiness to change, the results of this research also more emphasize the importance of individual readiness to change to Affective Commitment to Change. This research is an exploratory research that needs to be repeated with larger sample, from various types of respondents and organizations. The study also showed that there are 64.5% of commitment to change were influenced by other factors, as a result more variables to be studied in relation to commitment to change is need to be studied in order to predict commitment to change, as well as to identify the most important variable in developing commitment to change.

References

Alas, R. (2007). The triangular model for dealing with organizational change. Journal of Change Management, Vol. 7, Nos.3-4, pp. 255-71.

Armenakis, A. A., Harris, S. G., & Mossholder, K. M., (1993). Creating readiness for large-scale change. Human Relations, 46, 681-703.

Armenakis, A.A. & Bedeian, A.G. (1999). Organizational change: a review of theory and research in the 1990s. Journal of Management. Vol. 25, No. 3, pp. 293-315.

Armenakis, A.A. & Harris, S.G. (2002). Crafting a Change Message to Create Transformational Readiness. Journal of Organizational Change Management 15(2), 169-18.

Bouckenooghe, D. (2009), Change recipients' attitudes toward change: A review study. Working Paper Series. No. 2009-14. Vlerick Leuven Gent Management School, Gent.

Conner, Daryl R. (1992). Managing at the Speed of Change, How resilient managers succeed and prosper where others fails, New York: Villard Books.

Fedor, Donald B., Caldwell, Steven; Herold, David M., (2006), The Effects of Organizational Changes on Employee Commitment: A Multilevel Investigation. Personnel Psychology, 59, 1, (Spring, 2006): 1-29.

Hanpachern C. (1997). The extension of the theory of margin: A framework for assessing readiness for change. Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation. Colorado State University. Fort Collins.

Herold, D.M., Fedor, D.B. (2008). Change the Way You Lead Change: Leadership Strategies That Really Work. Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press.

Herscovitch, L. & Meyer, J.P. (2002). Commitment to Organizational Change: Extension of a Three-Component model. Journal of Applied Psychology, 87, 474-487.

Holt, Armenakis, et. al. (2007). Toward a comprehensive definition of readiness for change: a review of research and instrumentation. Research in Organizational Change and Development, 16, (2007): 289-336.

Martins, L. (2008). Organizational Development and Change. Manuscript prepared for S. Zedeck (Ed.). APA Handbook of Industrial and Organizational Psychology, Volume III. 110.

Wustari L.H. MANGUNDJAYA, Indonesia Faculty of Psychology, University of Indonesia, wustari@yahoo.com, wustari@ui.ac.id
Table 1: Instruments

No Scale       Number        Reliability
               of items

1. Commitment  to 12         [alpha] = 0.678
Change
Affective      4             [alpha] = 0.656
Commitment     to
Change







2. Attitude    toward 5      [alpha] = 0.631
Change



3. Individual  Readiness 15  [alpha] = 0.922
for Change



No Scale       Remarks


1. Commitment  Constructed and Modified by
Change         Herscovitch and Meyer (2002).
Affective      Consists of three dimensions:
Commitment     dimensions of organizational
Change         commitment, affective
               commitment, continuance
               commitment, and normative
               commitment. The validity
               index is 0.751 with p < 0.01.
               For this research only used
               Affective Commitment to
               Change.
2. Attitude    Constructed by the researcher
Change         based on the concept from
               Vakola (2005). Consists of one
               dimension. The validity index
               is 0.74 with p < 0.01.
3. Individual  Constructed and Modified by
for Change     Holt et al. (2007) consists of 33
               items. The validity index is 0.70
               with p < 0.01

Table 2: Correlation of Attitude to Change, Individual Readiness for
Change, and ICTC.

Nr.  Correlation between variables                           r

1    Attitude to Change, Individual Readiness for Change, &  0.604
     Commitment to Change
2    Attitude to Change & Commitment to Change               0.550
3    Individual Readiness for Change & Commitment to         0.596
     Change

Nr.  Correlation between variables                           R2

1    Attitude to Change, Individual Readiness for Change, &  0.365
     Commitment to Change
2    Attitude to Change & Commitment to Change               0.320
3    Individual Readiness for Change & Commitment to         0.355
     Change

Nr.  Correlation between variables                           Sign.

1    Attitude to Change, Individual Readiness for Change, &  0.000 (**)
     Commitment to Change
2    Attitude to Change & Commitment to Change               0.000 (**)
3    Individual Readiness for Change & Commitment to         0.000 (**)
     Change

(**) p<0.001
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Article Details
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Author:Mangundjaya, Wustari L.H.
Publication:Romanian Economic and Business Review
Article Type:Report
Geographic Code:9INDO
Date:Dec 30, 2013
Words:1731
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