This paper explores the question of how radical changes are implemented ir, organizations. Tie literature either does not directly address this issue or implies that radical change can only be implemented rapidly. In fact, to speak of the gradual implementation of radical change may at first glance appear paradoxical: how can radical change be implemented slowly? We examine the assumptions underlying various notions of radical change and suggest that it may be useful for both conceptua and managerial reasons to distinguish, a1 least analytically, between the nature or degree of orgafiizational change (radical or iIicremental) and the pace or speed of its implementation (rapid or graduai). Drawing on the findings of a field study that investigated the implementation of radical changeiil system development, we show thaE the gradual implementation of radical change may not only be feasible, but also effective in some situations. Specifically, we identify characteristics of the organizational context and the technological innovation that can indicate the conditions under which gradual implementation of radical changes may be appropriate.
Gallivan, Michael and Hofman, Debra, "Implementing Radical Change: Gradual versus Rapid Pace" (1994). ICIS 1994 Proceedings. 31.