The aim of the present study was to describe personnel's attitudes to change processes between a regional hospital and the primary health care centre as well as investigate these results with regards to theories pertaining to change and leading change.
Leadership has three crucial dimensions: focusing on personnel, results/key processes and the ethical base of activities.
A survey was conducted in 2003 using a comprehensive questionnaire. The total sample consisted of the personnel (n = 899) at the two organizations (answering rate was 68.8%). The data were analysed descriptively.
Approximately two-thirds of the respondents understood why the merger was occurring. Only one-third expressed that they had received sufficient information regarding the merger. In total 67% felt that the merger would create conflict while approximately one-fourth expressed uncertainty. Despite such negative responses, approximately two-thirds felt there were advantages to the merger. Significant differences were seen between the groups.
In times of change personnel expect leaders to focus on dialogue with their personnel and to anchor the vision of the change process amongst the personnel.
By identifying the 'prison of thought' and creating an atmosphere where reflection and discussion are valued the nurse leader can help prevent resistance to change.