Reaktionsmønstre i forandringsprocesser: Et kvalitativt studie over skolelæreres reaktioner i mødet med en organisatorisk forandring

Stine Achilles

Student thesis: Master thesis


In August 2014 a new reform of the Danish primary school was implemented together with a new law about the teachers’ working hours. These initiatives make the latest organizational processes of change which the school teachers have been subject of. In the present dissertation is examined selected teachers’ experience with and reaction to this organizational process of change based on whether their reactions can be explained by using theories about power, sensemaking or recognition. The dissertation is based on a phenomenological understanding where knowledge of real life must be acquired through the actor’s individual understanding of it, for which reason the collection of facts will be made with qualitative research interviews with a number of teachers, a head teacher and a union representative. In the last part of the dissertation it’s concluded that the teachers’ reactions are characterized by anger, disappointment and despair in the process of change. The teachers are angry and disappointed that they or anybody else have not been involved or heard in the preparation of the two initiatives. The teachers don’t feel that their professional knowledge of the field have been recognized, and they feel the content of the reform as being unrealistic and unsubstantiated, which leads to the teachers not being able to find a meaning in the structure of “The new primary school”. At the same time the teachers are despaired because after the implementation of the new law about the teachers’ working hours they cannot make the number of tasks and the time given to them fit together. For that reason they feel that they cannot live up to their own or others’ expectations, which give them the feeling that their long-standing ideas about what it means to be a good and well prepared teacher is about to crack. Another important conclusion is that the school management’s idea of liberating leadership as strategy of the process - in the time before the implementation of the two initiatives on August 1st 2014 – at the same time gave rise to anger and disappointment with some of the teachers, because they felt that the management in the beginning tried to give false hopes about influence, inasmuch as what the teachers wanted to have influence on had already been decided on government and local political levels. Overall it is concluded that the teachers’ reaction to the process of the changes mainly are based upon the fact that they don’t feel that they have been heard, understood or even involved in the decision about, how their future working life is going to be.

EducationsMSocSc in Human Resource Management, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2015
Number of pages128