Academics and practitioners have continually called for more research to provide a deeper understanding of the nonprofit sector in light of its growing importance in society. Peter Drucker's (1985) seminal work suggested that there is much the business sector can learn from the nonprofit sector. Mission drift/creep as a phenomenon in strategic management has received little academic attention even though the practitioner journals are replete with references of its proliferation. The nonprofit sector in particular, a widely diverse group, linked by a Federal tax exemption to conduct business for almost any lawful purpose, seems particularly susceptible. In the absence of a profit motive, managers and stakeholders alike look to the organizations' mission for direction as well as measurements of success. Mission is generally the principal reason for being and therefore is held as a statement upon which public trust is built. Departure either in the form of drift or creep is widely discouraged. The notion that organizations learn, therefore challenges the fundamental premise that missions should remain static.
Extant practitioner literature documents the widespread nature of mission drift within the sector and decries its proliferation. This study attempts to elevate the discourse, bringing attention to the phenomenon of mission drift/creep by first defining it and putting it in proper contextual frame. The study also through research and scholarship attempts to identify the importance of mission in organizational strategy by using secondary studies to examine this role of mission and thereby provide a fuller explanation for the occurrence of mission drift/creep.
This paper utilized a systematic procedure and content analysis to explore the contingency, resource dependency, population ecology, as well as institutional theories, to find meaningful explanations for mission drift/creep's causation in nonprofit organizations and ultimately support or refute the notion that mission drift/creep should be discouraged.
|Advisor:||Andersen, G. David, Dent, Eric|
|School:||University of Maryland University College|
|Department:||Doctor of Management Program|
|School Location:||United States -- Maryland|
|Source:||DAI-A 75/05(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Business administration, Management|
|Keywords:||For-profit, Mission drift/creep, Mission statements, Nonprofit, Organizational mission, Strategic planning|
Copyright in each Dissertation and Thesis is retained by the author. All Rights Reserved
The supplemental file or files you are about to download were provided to ProQuest by the author as part of a
dissertation or thesis. The supplemental files are provided "AS IS" without warranty. ProQuest is not responsible for the
content, format or impact on the supplemental file(s) on our system. in some cases, the file type may be unknown or
may be a .exe file. We recommend caution as you open such files.
Copyright of the original materials contained in the supplemental file is retained by the author and your access to the
supplemental files is subject to the ProQuest Terms and Conditions of use.
Depending on the size of the file(s) you are downloading, the system may take some time to download them. Please be