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"Fighting Fire with Fire. Inoculation after IT Implementation"
Peter Bou Saba, Régis Meissonier
22ème colloque de l'Association Information et Management, 17-19 mai 2017, Paris, France
The goal of this paper is to observe whether inoculation messages help management consultants maintain pre-existing neutral or positive attitudes toward a recently-deployed IT, while guarding against undue conflict contagion from negative messages that they might hear from their colleagues. We examine attitude contagion in the face of prior conflict experience in the firm through action research project conducted at Efficient Innovation (a French leader in management consulting). First, our observation reveals that employees expressing task-oriented conflicts toward IT deployment are likely to use a bypassing strategy and manifest only socio-political conflicts. Second, our study delivers an observation of a contagion effect from previous conflicts occurred during the deployment of an Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system. Third, using a theoretical perspective from the attitude change and persuasion literature called "attitude inoculation," a set of techniques for maintaining a strong-resistive attitude in the face of persuasive messages, has led to espousing a contrary position, resisting to negative persuasion (contagion) attempts and attitude change. Our practical goal is to provide advice to IS managers on how to manage contagious conflict behaviours toward IT tools through an inoculation intervention.
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