Managing the unwanted truth: A framework for dissent strategy

Academic Article


  • Purpose Although decision makers and their superiors are obliged to be open to bad news, dissent, warnings, and problem signs, employees are often afraid to speak up. The purpose of this paper is to present a framework for the study of organizational dissent strategy used during the decision-making phase of organizational change. Design/methodology/approach After identifying the components of the frame work, it is illustrated by examining two distinct and challenging dissent experiences. Propositions are set forth for further research. Findings It is argued that level of trust and sense of urgency will impel employees to voice opposition using four dissent strategies: organizational silence, organizational rumbling, organizational communication, and/or organizational blasting. Originality/value The paper is of value by showing that decision makers should be better equipped to identify and manage dissent strategies before they cause harm within their organizations. © 2007, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Cox Edmondson V; Munchus G
  • Start Page

  • 747
  • End Page

  • 760
  • Volume

  • 20
  • Issue

  • 6