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Between hope and despair sensegiving and sensemaking in hotel organizations during the COVID-19 crisis
University West, School of Business, Economics and IT, Division of Business Administration.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1435-1632
2021 (English)In: Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Management, ISSN 1447-6770, Vol. 49, p. 460-468Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The COVID-19 crisis has had a severe impact on the hospitality industry and its actors. In a very short period of time, hotels were shut down or lost most of their bookings, faced huge financial losses and went into crisis mode. During the pandemic, the hotel industry has struggled with ever-changing restrictions which have had large effects on the industry as a whole as well as on organizations and individual employees. There are obviously challenges for both leaders and followers in the hospitality industry related to this worldwide crisis. The aim of this paper is to study how leaders practice sensegiving and how employees make sense of the changed conditions during the COVID-19 crisis in hotel organizations. The following research question is asked: How do leaders practice sensegiving and how does the process of sensemaking among employees evolve over time? Data were collected in five hotels in Sweden, Norway and Denmark from March 2020 to April 2021 by conducting in-depth interviews with hotel managers and employees. A sensegiving and sensemaking approach was used as an analytical lens. The findings illustrate a reciprocal process of making sense of the crisis between leaders and followers. Furthermore, the results show that the pandemic blurred boundaries between private and professional life that had effects on both the sensegiving and sensemaking processes. To the author's knowledge, few studies have focused on the interplay between leaders' sensegiving practices and followers' sensemaking process during crisis. Furthermore, few studies have investigated sensemaking at all in the hospitality industry.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Elsevier Ltd , 2021. Vol. 49, p. 460-468
Keywords [en]
Sensemaking, Sensegiving, Hotel employees, Leadership, Followership, Covid-19
National Category
Business Administration
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hv:diva-17782DOI: 10.1016/j.jhtm.2021.10.002ISI: 000729692000005Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85118220036OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hv-17782DiVA, id: diva2:1621686
Available from: 2021-12-20 Created: 2021-12-20 Last updated: 2022-01-17Bibliographically approved

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Högberg, Karin

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
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  • de-DE
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