This chapter discusses the characteristics of narrative and its importance in change management. In brief, there are three important reasons for studying narrative in the workplace: 1. People habitually talk about change in narrative form; in doing so, they attribute meaning to events as they seek to make sense of change in their workplace. 2. The narrative conversations between those affected by change provide insights into why some people resist change. 3. Narrative essentially conceives change as a process of ‘becoming’; that is, all storytelling is naturally associated with a view of change as something that unfolds in time. Taken together, these three characteristics suggest that narrative and storytelling are intimately concerned with the social construction of change. Narrative permeates every aspect of human life. As Hardy (1968: 5) has observed: ‘We dream in narrative, daydream in narrative, remember, anticipate, hope, despair, believe, doubt, plan, revise, criticize, construct, gossip, learn, hate and love in narrative.’ We communicate through narratives (Boje, 1995; Gabriel, 1991).
Swipe to navigate through the chapters of this book
Please log in to get access to this content
To get access to this content you need the following product:
- Constructing Change Through Narrative and Storytelling
- Macmillan Education UK
- Sequence number
- Chapter number