Date of Award

1978

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

School

School of Education

Program

Religious Education, PhD

First Advisor

George H. Akers

Second Advisor

Bernard M. Lall

Third Advisor

John B. Youngberg

Abstract

Problem. In a changing society, organizations must innovate. To achieve productive change it is necessary that the organizational climate and its effect upon organizational personnel be understood. In the field of human resource management there is always a need for insights into psychological climate in order for organizational initiative and creativity to operate. It was the purpose of the present study to construct a patterned profile of how Seventh-day Adventist leading church members in Canada perceive the organizational climate, and to analyze the findings in relationship to creativity.

Method. The Litwin-Stringer Improved Climate Questionnaire was used to assess the perceived organizational climate in nine dimensions -- structure, responsibility, reward, risk, warmth, support, standards, conflict, and identity. Simple numerical and percentage distributions of the data were used in order to plot a line-graph profile for analysis of the inter-relationships of the nine climate factors.

Three-hundred and fifty-three returned questionnaires were studied. These were filled out by leading church members selected on the basis of randomization from the directories of the seven conferences in the Canadian Union Conference of Seventh-day Adventists. Thirty of the respondents were ministers.

Results. The profile reveals that the respondents perceive the organizational climate to be positively oriented in the factors of structure, reward, warmth, support, standards, and identity; negatively oriented in the factors of responsibility, risk, and conflict.

Conclusions and Recommendations. Based on the perceptions studied, the organizational climate of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Canada is moderately structured and formal. It is high in member affiliation and mutual support. However, it is moderately resistant to change and creativity; allowing only a little room for risk-taking, while it is decidedly unprepared to accept conflict as a positive ingredient in a growth-oriented organization. Concurrent with this analysis is the evidence that there is a moderately-low-level of personal responsibility toward the organization by its members. It is recommended that the Church's administration give study toward utilizing various techniques, to enhance the organizational climate in the direction of creativity.

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