Managing Organizational Change: The role of Middle Managers’ Stories and Emotional Reflexivity


  • Noor Khairin Nawwarah Khalid Department of Communication, AbdulHamid AbuSulayman Kulliyyah of Islamic Revealed Knowledge and Human Sciences, International Islamic University Malaysia, Jalan Gombak, 53100, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
  • Aini Maznina A. Manaf Department of Communication, AbdulHamid AbuSulayman Kulliyyah of Islamic Revealed Knowledge and Human Sciences, International Islamic University Malaysia, Jalan Gombak, 53100, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
  • Rizalawati Ismail Department of Communication, AbdulHamid AbuSulayman Kulliyyah of Islamic Revealed Knowledge and Human Sciences, International Islamic University Malaysia, Jalan Gombak, 53100, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia



Emotions, emotional reflexivity, middle managers, organisational change, stories


Previous studies have increasingly emphasised on the important roles of middle managers’ emotions in ensuring successful organisational change implementation. However, earlier research rarely focuses on middle managers’ emotional reflexivity during organisational change. The lack of awareness in practicing emotional reflexivity during change can affect middle managers’ work life quality where they can experience emotional vulnerability, workplace isolation and high sense of inadequacies. Using Communicative constitution of organisations the Montreal School (CCO TMS) as the theoretical underpinning, this research was conducted to study the emotional reflexivity of middle managers in a Malaysian organisation during organisational change. A qualitative methodology using semi-structured in-depth interviews was being carried to study about the targeted phenomenon and thirty middle managers from different departments in a Malaysian manufacturing aerospace component organisation has participated in this study. The analysis of the data generated seven emotional organisational change stories which were anxious, fear, anger, grief, hope, happy and gratitude. Those stories also generated the respondents’ emotional reflexivity dimensions which were self-consciousness, self-control and motivation. This research highlights the importance of listening to middle managers’ stories because it exposes the reasons for their acceptance and resistance towards change initiatives. It also highlights the importance for middle managers to instil emotional reflexivity skills in their work life as it helps them to understand and adapt to their organisation’s change programmes effectively. Lastly, this research also contributes to the enrichment of literature in the areas of CCO TMS theory, emotional reflexivity, organisational stories, as well as organisational change.


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How to Cite

Khalid, N. K. N., A. Manaf, A. M., & Ismail, R. (2023). Managing Organizational Change: The role of Middle Managers’ Stories and Emotional Reflexivity. Sains Humanika, 16(1), 43–56.