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Publication details

Ong, JTB 2016, 'Self-leadership coaching for employees during organisational change', DBA thesis, Southern Cross University, Lismore, NSW.

Copyright JTB Ong 2016


Organisational change is a constant issue that is becoming increasingly more challenging, especially for employees. Past research identifies the importance of having an effective relationship with the supervisor so that employees can engage in bi-directional communication to clarify issues related to the changes. This research topic, ‘The role of self-leadership coaching to enhance bi-directional communication for older Singaporean employees undergoing organisational change’, is seeking to test the effectiveness of a strategy, namely coaching to improve the development of employee self-leadership so that they can better cope with organisational change. As a result, the research examines the effectiveness of using coaching to build individual attributes so as to promote self-leadership for older Asian Singaporean employees so that they can overcome personal and cultural factors negatively impacting bi-directional communication with supervisors within an Asian context.

This research which was conducted in Singapore, uses qualitative interviews along with coaching to solicit information from 10 Asian Singaporean employees aged 45 to 65 from seven organisations about their ability to communicate about the change process with their supervisor before and after coaching. The findings indicate that individual attributes, particularly psychological capital, was a major factor negatively impacting communication with supervisors during the change process. After the coaching sessions, all participants perceived higher levels of internal strength (probably because of their increased individual attributes), and were able to engage in greater bi-directional communication during the change process.

Hence, the evidence supports a role for coaching older Asian employees undergoing organisational change who struggle with bi-directional communication with their supervisors. The advantage for organisations is that, when employees have higher levels of individual attributes, they have greater confidence to discuss change issues with their supervisor and as a consequence their resistance to change is reduced.