Change management through leadership: the mediating role of organizational culture

Abdulla Ahmed Al-Ali, Sanjay Kumar Singh, Moza Al-Nahyan, Amrik Singh Sohal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

84 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: This paper aims to examine the influence of change leadership on organizational culture and change management practices in public-sector firms in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). It also examines the mediating role of organizational culture on the interactions between leadership and change management programmes in the organization. Design/methodology/approach: An empirical test of the hypotheses using confirmatory factor analysis and structural equation modelling were applied to data collected from 210 middle-management respondents of public-sector organizations in the UAE. Findings: The findings suggest that change-oriented leadership has a positive and significant direct effect on planned change (ß = 0.20, p < 0.01) and a positive and significant but indirect effect on planned change (ß = 0.279, p < 0.01) and emergent change (ß = 0.262, p < 0.01) change. Furthermore, hierarchical culture was found to positively and significantly impact directly on both planned (ß = 0.480, p < 0.001) and emergent (ß = 0.245, p < 0.01) change management in the UAE public-sector service organizations. Practical implications: Based on the study’s findings, the role of the hierarchical culture in effecting change in the UAE public-sector organizations provides new and significant insights into the research literature on organizational culture as regards change management issues and the challenges facing these organizations. Originality/value: The study makes a significant original contribution toward knowledge on the management of organizational change in UAE public-sector service organizations. It has practical implications for managers and leaders confronting organizational change management in the UAE.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)723-739
Number of pages17
JournalInternational Journal of Organizational Analysis
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 4 Sept 2017


  • Change management
  • Emergent change
  • Leadership
  • Organizational culture
  • Planned change
  • UAE

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Strategy and Management
  • Organizational Behavior and Human Resource Management


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