• Displaced women professionals: an exploration of perceived learning processes during workplace transition /

      Balan, B. N.; Department of Graduate and Undergraduate Studies in Education (Brock University, 2004-06-04)
      This study focused on obtaining a deeper understanding of the perceived learning of female professionals during workplace transition. The women's lived experiences were explored through a feminist interpretive lens (Bloom, 1998). The study also drew upon concepts from adult learning such as barriers and facilitating factors to learning, resistance, transformative learning, and multiple ways of knowing. Five women participated in a 1 -hour interview and a focus group activity. The findings are presented under the 2 broad themes of perceived learning and factors affecting learning. The most common theme of perceived learning was participants' experience of increased self-knowledge. Additionally, while learning was thought of as a struggle, it provided either an opportunity for a reexamination of goals or a reexamination of self. Reflection by participants seemed to follow two orientations and other types of perceived learning included experiential, formal, and informal learning. In the broad theme of factors affecting learning, contradictions and conflict emerged through the examination of participants' multiple subjectivities, and within their naming of many factors as both facilitating factors and barriers to learning. The factors affecting learning themes included personal relationships, professional communities, selfesteem, attitude and emotion, the gendered experience of transition, time, and finances. The final theme explored participants' view of work and their orientations to the future. A proposed model of learning during workplace transition is presented (Figure 1 ) and the findings discussed within this proposed model's framework. Additional developmental theories of women (Josselson, 1987; Levinson & Levinson, 1996), communities of practice theories (Wenger, 1998), and career resilience theories (Pulley, 1995) are discussed within the context of the proposed model. Implications to practice for career counsellors, people going through workplace transition, human resource managers and career coaches were explored. Additionally implications to theory and future areas of research are also discussed.
    • Exploring the experience of the pioneers of change

      Molinaro, Vince; Department of Graduate and Undergraduate Studies in Education (Brock University, 1994-07-09)
      The world of work with Western society appears to be undergoing a major change. The literature has described this phenomenon as a change from an industrialbased economy to a knowledge-based economy. This change will represent a complete transformation of the world of work; some suggest that everything we have come to accept and know as normal will change. Our present society seems to be in a period of transition. It is a time with many challenges and problems, many of which cannot be solved with thinking patterns from an old industrial-based economy. A fundamental shift in thinking patterns consistent with a new emerging world of work must take place. This change in thinking represents a fundmental shift from traditional and linear ways of seeing the world (worldview), to more holistic ways of seeing the world. In this investigation the word paradigm was used to define how people see their world. A paradigm shift is defined as a change in how a person sees their world: a change from an old to new or different way of viewing the world. Those individuals who are the first to shift their paradigm are called paradigm pioneers. These individuals do not only shift their ways of seeing the world, but they also begin to act and behave in ways consistent with the new paradigm. Thus far the research literature has adequately described the concepts of paradigms and paradigm shifts. However, little is known regarding how people actually and eventually make a shift. As it will be important for each individual to make a personal paradigm shift, then it will be extremely valuable to learn more about the process itself. The purpose of this investigation was to explore these issues in more detail and specifically, describe the experience of paradigm shifts and explore the experience of paradigm pioneers. A qualitative research methodology involving in-depth interviews was used to investigate the experiences of four participants identified as paradigm pioneers. It is interesting to note that the participants in this study did not describe an allencompassing paradigm shift. In fact, each participant, defined a paradigm shift in several different ways. They did relate several examples of paradigm shifts. However, even among these examples, there was a high degree of variability. The findings of this investigation centered upon the participants' experience as pioneers. Each pioneer shared many of the same qualities, the first quality of which described how these pioneers dealt with change. I called this a change-sense quality. The pioneers viewed change in an open and positive manner, and were also aware of change taking place in their world. Finally, they displayed an understanding of change, and a bias to take positive action in the face it. The participants also shared an inner quality. The four pioneers demonstrated a personal purpose and vision, and were selfdirected individuals. They also had an innate curiosity which translated into a love of learning. They also displayed a quality where relationships with others were highly valued. Relationships were important to the pioneers because they played a support role to help them deal with the challenges of being a pioneer. Pioneers also valued relationships because, they relied on others to make change happen. The above mentioned qualities enabled pioneers to be effective in a changing world of work. The findings from this investigation have many implications for research and practice. First, the concept of paradigms and paradigm shifts must be further researched. A great deal more must be learned in order to better understand the kind of shift individuals must make to be effective in the new world of work. Second, the qualities displayed by pioneers are important for all members of the world of work to develop. The qualities shared by pioneers appeared to represent an enduring set of traits that can possibly help individuals deal more positively with uncertainty and rapid change taking place in today's North American world of work.
    • Organizational change: implications of culture and leadership in the transformation to a total quality management paradigm

      Meuser, Elizabeth, A.; Department of Graduate and Undergraduate Studies in Education (Brock University, 1993-07-09)
      The study was undertaken to investigate organizational readiness for change to a total quality management (TQM) paradigm as the corporate-wide strategy within a long-term care facility. The focus of the study was on leadership values and organizational cultural characteristics that could either accelerate or impede the change process at The Public Hospital. structurally, the ~tudy included 'three distinct components. The first component examined the management philosophy outlined by Deming (1986) and his contemporary Juran (1989) in order to determine what leadership values best support the new Total Quality Management paradigm. Secondly, this information was compared to present leadership values at The Public Hospital with the purpose of identifying opportunities for improvement within the organization's current culture as the hospital moves toward the desired TQM culture. The final component, a roadmap, was developed to reflect the most appropriate direction for organizational change at The Public Hospital.