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Article
Publication date: 3 August 2021

Jinhua Chen, Graeme Harrison and Lu Jiao

This paper examines how lateral accountability mechanisms may be used to address the unity–diversity tension in a large not-for-profit (NFP) inter-organizational…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper examines how lateral accountability mechanisms may be used to address the unity–diversity tension in a large not-for-profit (NFP) inter-organizational partnership governed under a lead organization model.

Design/methodology/approach

A case study was conducted in the New South Wales Settlement Partnership comprising 23 NFP organizations providing settlement services for migrants and humanitarian entrants. Multiple data sources included semi-structured interviews, proprietary and publicly available documents and observation.

Findings

The paper demonstrates (1) the usefulness of a strength-based approach that the lead organization adopts in enacting lateral accountability mechanisms, which enables a balance between unity and diversity in the partnership; and (2) the capability of the lead organization governance model to address the unity–diversity tension.

Research limitations/implications

The paper (1) identifies the importance of a strength-based approach in implementing lateral accountability mechanisms to address the unity–diversity tension; and (2) challenges prior research that advocates the network administrative organization governance model in addressing the tension.

Practical implications

For practice, the paper identifies a suite of lateral accountability practices designed to address the unity–diversity tension. For policy, it provides confidence for government in promulgating the lead organization governance model in “purchasing” public services.

Originality/value

The paper demonstrates how lateral accountability mechanisms may be used to provide a balance between the objectives of preserving and leveraging the benefits of partner diversity and achieving unity. The strength-based approach (used in enacting the accountability mechanisms), while having a history in psychology and social work research, has not been recognized in prior partnership accountability and governance studies.

Details

Accounting, Auditing & Accountability Journal, vol. 35 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0951-3574

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 11 May 2015

David Giles

This article aims to report on the findings from a research project that explored a school’s changing ideological storyline with the appointment of a new Principal and the…

Abstract

Purpose

This article aims to report on the findings from a research project that explored a school’s changing ideological storyline with the appointment of a new Principal and the Board of Trustees’ intention to move towards a strengths-based approach to education. Following the school’s dialogue and decision-making over a three-year period enabled the identification of a range of competitive processes between the dominant and an emergent ideology within the school.

Design/methodology/approach

Using an ideological framework proposed by Meighan et al. (2007), the research focussed on the development and maintenance of shared understandings within each ideology. For the purpose of this article, the participants have been limited to those in school governance, the school’s senior leadership team and some teachers across a three-year period. Data were gathered through semi-structured interviews, online surveys and informal observations and analysed through interpretive and hermeneutic processes.

Findings

The findings show the subtleties and nuances of two dominant and competing ideologies that represented different philosophies for education: a deficit discourse of progressive ideals and a strengths-based ideology of education. The existing and dominant ideology is challenged by the determination and moral purpose of the principal with the unanimous support from those in governance. In due process, the school emerged into a creative enterprise through the adoption of shared understandings that were underscored by a strengths-based ideology.

Originality/value

It is incumbent upon school principals to notice the shifting organisational storylines within their schools and communities and act in a manner that realises the moral imperative of schooling for the students (Fullan, 2011). This article opens specific ideological processes that have appreciatively moved a school towards pedagogical excellence and a repurposing of the organisation for the students’ sake.

Details

International Journal of Organizational Analysis, vol. 23 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1934-8835

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 22 February 2011

Nicky Garcea, Stephen Isherwood and Alex Linley

This paper sets out to draw comparisons and make linkages between strengths and competency methodologies. Whereas some authors have seen the strengths approach as a…

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Abstract

Purpose

This paper sets out to draw comparisons and make linkages between strengths and competency methodologies. Whereas some authors have seen the strengths approach as a revolution in human resources (HR), the authors of this paper see it more as a natural evolution. The paper aims to overview the strengths approach as well as presenting a case study of strengths‐based graduate recruitment from the Big Four professional services firm, Ernst & Young.

Design/methodology/approach

The strengths‐based approach to recruitment is described in general, and the particular approach taken to graduate recruitment at Ernst & Young is outlined. Rather than assessing for generic competencies, strengths‐based recruitment seeks to identify the natural strengths of individuals that are aligned to the role for which they are applying. Assessors are trained to look for energy and authenticity, together with evidence of high performance of the strength.

Findings

The strengths‐based graduate recruitment project at Ernst & Young delivered a 15 percent increase in the number of candidates de‐selected at first interview, together with a 12 percent increase in the number of candidates appointed following assessment center, compared with the previous competency approach.

Practical implications

Strengths‐based graduate recruitment provides a robust and reliable methodology for attracting, selecting and appointing the best candidates for the role. It delivers a better candidate experience and builds a more positive and differentiated employer brand.

Originality/value

Ernst & Young is one of the first UK organizations to use strengths‐based graduate recruitment systematically in this way The strengths methodology not only supports its interviewing and assessment centers, but also is used throughout its campus events and through attraction and candidate engagement with an online strengths tool developed and managed by Capp.

Details

Strategic HR Review, vol. 10 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1475-4398

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 8 April 2014

Nicky Garcea, Rebecca Harrison and Alex Linley

The purpose of this article is to set out the ways in which pharmaceutical company Boehringer Ingelheim embedded a strengths-based approach to the assessment and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this article is to set out the ways in which pharmaceutical company Boehringer Ingelheim embedded a strengths-based approach to the assessment and development of field-based staff during a period of structural and culture change. It provides an overview of how strengths-based methodologies were implemented and embedded through this period. It offers a case study example of how Capp partnered with Boehringer Ingelheim to deliver and cascade its assessment and development solutions. It also provides early evaluation data.

Design/methodology/approach

Boehringer Ingelheim introduced strengths through recruitment and development. It built on Capp's strengths methodology and Realise2 tool and model. To aid implementation, cross functional teams were also set up to cascade knowledge and skills across the organizational system.

Findings

The initial findings from this program include quantitative and qualitative data from candidates and assessors demonstrating their positive perception of the assessment and development process.

Practical implications

This article provides case study material, client learning and tips for how other organizations could introduce strengths-based solutions into similar culture change, team and personal development projects.

Originality/value

Boehringer Ingelheim is one of the first UK based organizations explicitly to take a strengths-based approach to aid culture change.

Details

Strategic HR Review, vol. 13 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1475-4398

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 8 June 2015

Sets out ways in which a pharmaceutical company embedded a strengths-based approach to the assessment and development of field-based staff during a period of structural…

280

Abstract

Purpose

Sets out ways in which a pharmaceutical company embedded a strengths-based approach to the assessment and development of field-based staff during a period of structural and cultural change. Provides an overview of how strengths-based methods were implemented and embedded.

Design/methodology/approach

Describes how collaboration with a people-management consultancy introduced strengths through recruitment and development to the company.

Findings

Relates the positive perception of the assessment and development program by candidates and assessors.

Practical implications

Provides advice for how other organizations could introduce strengths-based solutions into similar culture change, team and personal-development projects.

Originality/value

Points out that the pharmaceutical company – Boehringer Ingelheim – is one of the first UK-based organizations to take a strengths-based approach to aid culture change.

Details

Human Resource Management International Digest, vol. 23 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0967-0734

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 14 October 2013

Alex Linley and Nicky Garcea

This article explores how strengths-based recruitment is enabling graduate recruiters to engage, attract and select the best talent. Drawing from the example of major…

2184

Abstract

Purpose

This article explores how strengths-based recruitment is enabling graduate recruiters to engage, attract and select the best talent. Drawing from the example of major graduate recruiter, Ernst & Young, it shows how strengths assessment can be used at each stage of the recruitment and selection process.

Design/methodology/approach

Strengths-based recruitment is focused on assessing candidates in relation to their performance and motivation. It identifies what people do well and enjoy doing, relative to the requirements and job-fit of the prospective employer. Strengths are also assessed online as part of a front-end screening process through the situational strengths test. This assesses the strengths candidates have, together with how they would use those strengths in a range of scenarios and situations they would be likely to experience in the role.

Findings

Strengths-based recruitment and the Situational Strengths Test engage candidates by providing them with a realistic job preview of the role. They help candidates to make informed decisions about their own fit with the role. They help organizations to select the candidates who match their requirements more effectively from those who do not, delivering better outcomes for candidates and employers.

Originality/value

Strengths-based recruitment is an engaging recruitment approach that appeals to the Generation Y of current graduates who are focused on the opportunity to use their strengths at work. Ernst & Young has seen improved candidate experience, enhanced business engagement, and better selection outcomes through its use of strengths-based recruitment.

Details

Strategic HR Review, vol. 12 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1475-4398

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 7 August 2017

William L. Marshall, Liam E. Marshall and Mark E. Olver

The purpose of this paper is to note the basis for the emergence of strength-based approaches (SBA) to the treatment of sex offenders and point to Tony Ward’s Good Lives…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to note the basis for the emergence of strength-based approaches (SBA) to the treatment of sex offenders and point to Tony Ward’s Good Lives Model (GLM) as the impetus for these developments.

Design/methodology/approach

Next, the authors outline the elements of the GLM and of other SBAs. The features of various ways to evaluate treatment programs are discussed and this is followed by an examination of the evidence bearing on the value of the GLM and other SBAs.

Findings

The authors note that the effects of the GLM are limited to within treatment indices as, to date, there are no long-term outcome evaluations of the model on reducing recidivism. Indeed, there appears to be only one such study of an alternative SBA program.

Originality/value

The authors conclude that additional outcome studies are needed to evaluate the utility of the switch away from deficit-focused approaches to strength-based models of treatment.

Details

Journal of Criminal Psychology, vol. 7 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2009-3829

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 11 September 2017

Freya Vander Laenen and Tom Vander Beken

As a tribute to Eric Broekaert, the purpose of this paper is to look back at a 2004 paper he wrote on the integration of paradigms of care and reports on how this is…

Abstract

Purpose

As a tribute to Eric Broekaert, the purpose of this paper is to look back at a 2004 paper he wrote on the integration of paradigms of care and reports on how this is reflected in an ongoing multidisciplinary study at Ghent University.

Design/methodology/approach

In 2014, the authors began a research project to develop multidisciplinary strengths-based strategies for a vulnerable group of people, in this case people with a mental illness who offend. The authors chose a strength-based research design for the study, in order to focus on individuals’ capabilities, qualities and assets, rather than on deficits, incapacities or problems.

Findings

Three elements from Eric Broekaert’s work have inspired the research project. First, it is not possible to carry out research and interact with vulnerable persons devoid of the political, social and cultural context. Second, the authors should not restrict to one discipline or one paradigm when building (academic) knowledge and in practice. Third, the central aim of any practice should be to empower vulnerable people, improve their quality of life and challenge aspects of society that alienate and exclude them.

Originality/value

Eric Broekaert’s belief in the power of encounter and integration, reflected in his 2004 paper, continues to influence this work. As an open-minded enabler and critical integrator, he has left very visible traces in the research environment at Ghent University and beyond. Inspired by his thoughts and personality, new generations of researchers across many disciplines follow in his footsteps, jointly searching for what unites us as human beings rather than what divides us.

Details

Therapeutic Communities: The International Journal of Therapeutic Communities, vol. 38 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0964-1866

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 13 February 2017

Ortrun Zuber-Skerritt and Selva Abraham

The purpose of this paper is to introduce a conceptual framework for work-applied learning (WAL) that fosters the development of managers and other professionals as…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to introduce a conceptual framework for work-applied learning (WAL) that fosters the development of managers and other professionals as lifelong learners and practitioner researchers – through reflective practice, action research, action learning and action leadership, for positive organisational change.

Design/methodology/approach

The theoretical framework is designed from a holistic, affective-socio-cognitive approach to learning, teaching, research and development. It is based on a phenomenological research paradigm and informed by aspects of various theories, including experiential learning theory, strengths-based theory, grounded theory and critical theory/realism.

Findings

Based on classical and recent literature and the authors’ extensive experience, the WAL model presented here is an effective and practical approach to management education, research and development. It is useful for present and future requirements of business, industry, government and society at large in this twenty-first century, and in pursuit of a world of equality, social justice, sustainable development and quality of life for all. This is because of the nature of the research paradigm, particularly its collaborative and emancipatory processes.

Originality/value

This paper provides a theoretical, pedagogical and methodological rationalisation for WAL. This model is particularly useful for developing individual, team and organisational learning and for cultivating managers – or professional learners generally – as practitioner researchers. These researchers may act as role models of collaborative action leadership in their organisations with a cascading effect. This paper therefore advances an incipient literature on practitioner researchers as action leaders.

Details

Higher Education, Skills and Work-Based Learning, vol. 7 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-3896

Keywords

Article
Publication date: 1 January 2013

James Brook

The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate how the adoption of strengths‐focused human resources (HR) can deliver measurable business returns, from hard results such as…

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate how the adoption of strengths‐focused human resources (HR) can deliver measurable business returns, from hard results such as increased revenues and reduced costs, to “lead” indicators of future success: for example better customer engagement, improved morale, discretionary effort and personal wellbeing. The author, from specialist provider, Strengths Partnership, aims to explain how to identify and extract the “strengths DNA” from each individual and to build a convincing business case for the use of strengths, in all its different contexts, within the workplace.

Design/methodology/approach

The central methodology in this paper is extracted from Strengths Partnership's leading Strengthscope assessment tool, designed to help individuals understand their standout strengths; the unintended consequences that may arise when strengths go into overdrive; the extent to which they are able to productively apply their strengths at work; and how visible their strengths are to others. The information is based on seven years of research conducted by Strengths Partnership into identifying, optimizing and developing strengths in organizations, supported by a growing body of published research and literature in positive psychology and strengths‐based approaches to organizational effectiveness.

Findings

If they can surmount the challenge of how to embed this approach into their HR life cycle and core HR activities, organizations will see a major paradigm shift from an emphasis on fixing weaknesses to one that encourages a person's natural energies and inclinations in the pursuit of success.

Research limitations/implications

HR and learning and development professionals need a different set of principles and tools to get the most out of the strengths approach and to ensure it becomes part of the organization's DNA. Without these, the approach is unlikely to deliver real value beyond the initial feel‐good factor that invariably arises during an initial strengths training program.

Originality/value

More research and tool development is needed in this area; however the ideas and approaches in this article will help to embed the strengths approach throughout the employee life cycle – from hiring and selection, through team development, development and culture change.

Details

Strategic HR Review, vol. 12 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1475-4398

Keywords

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