Date Awarded


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (Ed.D.)




Dorothy E. Finnegan


The purpose of this case study was to examine the degree to which those managing change for a distance learning initiative followed David Nadler's (1989) four action steps designed to reduce resistance in making the transition from the former operational state to a newly-created state.;The four action steps include providing opportunities for participation among employees, allowing employees to identify current operations that will not work in the new organizational state, rewarding behavior that assists in the transition, and allowing sufficient time for the change to take place. The findings in this study revealed that participation was the critical component that effected successful change.;Those units in which administrators encouraged employee participation in the transition were able to make adaptations in their operations that allowed for the development of effective and efficient student support services for distance learners. Employees were also very satisfied with the management of change provided by the administrators.;Those units in which administrators did not encourage employee participation in the transition were able to make adaptations for distance learners; however, the services provided were neither effective nor efficient. Further, employees were dissatisfied with the managers' styles in directing the change.;It is therefore recommended that managers involve employees whenever possible in their units' operations--decision-making, problem-solving, and transitions undertaken by the unit--for a productive and satisfied workforce.;Further research is suggested in employee participation and managerial style, as well as in women's leadership, and teamwork in organizations.



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