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Theoretical Case for Participative Change

Kenneth Holt, John A. Parnell and Shawn Carraher explored whether prevailing participative management styles in an organisation could enhance the dissemination of the strategy. Their study[1] suggested that the propensity of managers to employ participative management styles positively influenced the degree to which strategies were perceived as part of the organisation. They were interested in what they called ‘Strategic diffusion’ the degree to which a strategy is effectively implemented and becomes an accepted part of the organization.

They examined three dimensions of strategic diffusion: involvement, understanding, and commitment[2]. The first dimension, involvement, concerned the degree to which middle and lower level managers were involved in the strategy-making process. They defined this involvement as encompassing numerous processes and techniques that reflected top management's active consultation with other managers in the organisation. They quoted other research that showed that individuals tend to work harder at attaining a goal when they were involved in setting it[3].


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