Campus Location

Dallas Campus (Online)

Date of Award



Document Type



Organizational Leadership

Degree Name

Doctor of Education

Committee Chair or Primary Advisor

Katherine Yeager

Second Committee Member or Secondary Advisor

Sara Salkil

Third Committee Member or Committee Reader

Heather Rasmussen


Change is never ending in organizations, as it is necessary to maintain a competitive advantage. Although change is needed, research shows most change implementations do not succeed.

Middle managers (MMs) are considered the main facilitators of change. They receive directive for change and are tasked with not only processing and accepting the change but also communicating the directive down into the ranks and executing upon it. This basic qualitative study explored how resilience can aid an MM when implementing change, where resistance is present. The conceptual framework for this study included Lewin’s (1947) three-stage model of change theory and the resilience theory. The participants interviewed were 10 individuals who had experienced resistance as a middle manager because of a change directive. Each individual described their experiences and were asked prompts from a semistructured interview protocol document when specifics were not covered freely. Transcripts of these interviews were used for a basis of data that were coded to identify themes that impacted the MM’s resilience negatively or positively and created the discussion and recommendations for the findings. The overall finding of this research proved that positive leadership had the main effect on resilience during times of change resistance for MMs.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.

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Leadership Commons



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