The politics of consulting for organizational change

Michael Harrison

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


This paper analyzes forms of political involvement among consultants engaged in planned organizational change. This analysis is intended to contribute to research and theorizing on organizational change and to help consultants and managers cope with the challenges posed by organizational politics. Four consulting styles are distinguished, those that vary in the sources of consultant power, the consultants' degree of involvement in organizational politics, the processes on which consultants and their clients rely to implement organizational change, and the consultants' definition of the main client. Factors accounting for variations in the use of the four consulting styles are noted, along with conditions that may influence the effectiveness of these styles. Implications for consulting practice also are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)92-107
Number of pages16
JournalKnowledge and Policy
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1991


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