Leadership, process improvement, and information technology: The implementation of network-based applications in a financial services organization
KeywordsBusiness Administration, Management.
Education, Technology of.
AdvisorClark, Donald C.
MetadataShow full item record
PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThe basis of this study is that traditional models of leadership do not adequately address the complexity of challenges presented to leaders engaged in IT-facilitated process improvements. The result is that most IT (information technology) implementations either fail outright or do not meet expectations. This study was conducted therefore, to close the knowledge gap that exists between the leadership decision to seek IT-facilitated improvement and the leadership approach needed to successfully accomplish it. Case study and qualitative research methodologies were employed to reveal assumptions and beliefs of leadership that influenced the development of network-based applications in a financial service organization--how improvement projects were initiated, implemented, and accepted by the staff for whom they were intended. The analysis of data led to the description of seven leadership themes--Institutional Climate, Involvement, Communication, Learning, Development Strategy, Resources, and Impact. Of particular interest are the assumptions and beliefs of the Impact theme, which provides evidence that IT-facilitated process improvements were successfully implemented in the financial service organization studied. The assumptions and beliefs of leadership are then used to determine how the described framework of leadership is aligned with the Postindustrial Model of Leadership suggested by Lee Bolman and Terrence Deal (1991)--a model that they contend extends beyond the limitations of traditional models. The framework revealed by the seven leadership themes was compared to evaluation criteria developed for Bolman and Deal's leadership model. Using the organizational frame definitions developed by Bolman and Deal in their book Reframing Organizations: Artistry, Choice, and Leadership (1991), the following ranking was observed: Structural, Political, Human Resource, and Symbolic. This analysis provides evidence that the framework of leadership in the financial services organization is aligned with the Postindustrial Model of Leadership suggested by Bolman and Deal. In summary, the study reveals that successful IT-implementations were achieved in the financial service organization with Bolman and Deal's Postindustrial Model of Leadership in place. Additional research is recommended, however, to refine the assumptions and beliefs of leadership such that the conclusions reached in this study can be confirmed and generalized to expanded populations and circumstances.
Degree ProgramGraduate College