Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

A Positive Psychological Examination of Strategic Planning in the Public Sector Utilizing SOAR
by Coleman, Tanjia M., Ph.D., Benedictine University, 2016, 244; 10154491
Abstract (Summary)

The purpose of this study was to create additional research and outcomes on the theory of applying a whole systems approach to strategic planning through a large group intervention in a non-profit organization. This study utilized grounded theory and qualitative analysis. The research focused on the positive whole systems approach to examine the construct of strategic planning in a large group intervention utilizing the strategic planning frameworks of SOAR (Strengths, Opportunities, Aspirations and Results; Starvos & Hinrichs, 2009) and appreciative inquiry (AI; Cooperrider, Sorensen, Yaeger, & Whitney, 2005) as outcomes-focused alternatives to strategic planning in organizations. This qualitative study was executed in conjunction with appreciative interviews utilizing SOAR strategic visioning process and a strategic visioning SOAR Summit.

This study provided additional insight into whole systems change approach by utilizing strategic planning methods including: AI, SOAR, large group intervention, positive organization psychology, and World Cafe since such studies were limited that analyzed this approach in the development of public sector organizations. This research study consisted of 63 interviews that were conducted with employees, administrators, trustees, and community residents of the community-funded, non-profit fire protection department. The study timeline was from September 2014 until February 2015. Findings suggested that both non-profit and private sector organizations could drive their missions forward by engaging in a whole systems approach and large group intervention, focusing on appreciative and positive organizational change methodologies.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Hinrichs, Gina
School: Benedictine University
School Location: United States -- Illinois
Source: DAI-A 78/01(E), Dissertation Abstracts International
Subjects: Business administration, Management, Organizational behavior
Keywords: Appreciative inquiry, Large group intervention, Positive organizational psychology, SOAR, Strategic planning, World cafe
Publication Number: 10154491
ISBN: 978-1-369-09584-5
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