Interviewees were asked about their experiences during the process of change, for example experiences concerning the behaviour of their managers, the way each company had been organised and had tried to change, the aims of the change, the difficulties, etc.
Responses were taken to refer to the way each interviewee named certain experiences (and excluded others) and hence, that they would not necessarily have the same meaning even when they looked the same. The responses were grouped to indicate how individuals referred to each other, i.e. made themselves responsible for each other as part of a presumed collective, and attempted to ‘increase their presence’. Another reason for the grouping was to identify whether the responses would suggest a systematic way to ‘increase one’s presence’ (and show the ‘twofold’ nature required in research). To this end, the responses were categorised as a sequence of steps or stages, which might help employees to achieve a strong ‘presence’ in their company. Each stage is taken to identify how individuals may operate on the results of previous stages as a way to move their companies and themselves in a preferred direction (that of competence and sustainable growth) and achieve a strong ‘presence’ themselves. Other responses that seemed to indicate a different story, e.g. a descent into despair, are not reported here. Some references to similar findings in the literature are added.