Leading Organizations through the Stages of Grief The Development of Negative Emotions over Environmental Change


This conceptual paper theorizes about the effect of emotions of individual organizational leaders during a period of sustainability-related upheaval within an industry. To illustrate the effect of emotions, it proposes to draw on the model of five stages of grief by Elisabeth Kübler-Ross (1969), a conceptual framework describing terminally ill patients' responses to their impending death. The authors adapt Kübler-Ross' taxonomy and use anecdotal evidence from grieving top managers of energy companies in response to the nuclear phase-out in Germany. The paper conceptualizes the influence of emotions in the decision-making process of key agents in response to institutional pressures in their field. The paper suggests that focusing on emotional influences will add an important dimension to the analysis of sustainability strategies, and discuss implications for further research at an individual and organizational level

Additional Informationsunspecified
Commencement Date30 June 2012
Contributors Wüstenhagen, Rolf (Project Worker) & Friedrich, Elmar Konstantin (Project Manager)
Datestamp 16 Sep 2022 10:58
Completion Date 10 May 2014
Keywords Emotions, stages of grief, organizational change, decision-making, corporate sustainability, nuclear energy, energy policy
Methods Theorieentwicklung Fallstudie
Funders External Financing
Partners Nagelschneider Stiftung, www.stiftung-nagelschneider.de/
Id 233868
Project Range Institute/School
Project Status completed
Subjects business studies
Topics Emotionen, Entscheidungsverhalten, Riskowahrnehmung, Erneuerbare Energien, Atomausstieg, Energiewirtschaft
Project Type dissertation project
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