Balancing Top-Down, Bottom-Up, and Peer-to-Peer Approaches to Sustaining Distance Training

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DUDINK, Gertrude; BERGE, Zane; Balancing Top-Down, Bottom-Up, and Peer-to-Peer Approaches to Sustaining Distance Training; Turkish Online Journal of Distance Education-TOJDE July 2006 ISSN 1302-6488 Volume: 7 Number: 3 Article: 11;


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Many distance training case studies identify distance training leadership as bottom-up, whereas much of the literature suggests a need for strategic, top-down approaches. With change management as an overarching framework, approaches to sustaining distance training that originate at different levels of the organization are explored. Special attention is paid to the content of the change messages involved, guided by Rogers’ five attributes of innovations. Research of change management and distance training literature suggests a combination of approaches that should fit the organizational culture as well as correctly address genuine concerns at the various organizational levels. A properly balanced approach could lead to new levels of communication and understanding in a learning organization and to distance training being sustained as a business process.