Executive Leadership Challenges Implementing Systemic Change Under Conditions of Litigated Reform

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Abstract

A case study was conducted using the lens of second-order change to examine leadership challenges during litigated-based reform of New Jersey’s child welfare agency. Six challenges identified included (a) difficulty implementing the comprehensive reform plan; (b) attempting systemwide change within a weak infrastructure; (c) leadership instability; (d) unclear leader roles and responsibilities; (e) poor diffusion of the case practice model, and (f) weak quality control mechanisms. Three recommendations for reducing implementation failures included developing rich pictures to understand system interdependencies, using open communication to facilitate change readiness, and implementing a sustainable quality review system to guide the change process.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)131-151
Number of pages21
JournalHuman Service Organizations Management, Leadership and Governance
Volume40
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - 14 Mar 2016

Keywords

  • leadership and organizational change
  • Management
  • organizational theory and analysis
  • policy research to guide organizational decision making

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