Relationship between senior pastors' attitudes toward organizational change and church growth factors
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Discussion regarding the change process within the local church has become increasingly prominent over the last few years. A great deal of the literature discusses the process of organizational change by focusing on a macro or system-oriented approach. Individual characteristics that are equally important to the success of change initiatives have been neglected. Therefore, the purpose of this research study was to consider an alternative approach to the organizational change processes by focusing on individuals' cognitive, affective, and behavioral tendencies as constructs of attitudinal disposition. This micro or dispositional-oriented study explores potential relationships between senior pastors' attitudinal disposition of organizational change and various church factors. The study consisted of 138 senior pastors who completed a self-report inventory assessing their attitude toward organizational change. The results were then utilized along with additional reported data concerning ministry tenure, church size, and church growth status to employ correlational statistical models in determining strength and direction of relationship. Correlation coefficients were compared among pastors of growing, plateaued, and declining churches. The results demonstrated a trend toward a strong, positive relationship between pastors' of growing churches attitude toward change and church size. The study also revealed that the attitude toward change scores of pastors of plateaued churches were lower the longer they served in ministry. The practical implications of these findings are discussed in relation to the local church.