The purpose of this dissertation was to examine an important aspect of strategy implementation: the process whereby strategy is translated into a goal focusing on how that goal is communicated across vertical organizational boundaries and how commitment to it is obtained at various organizational levels. The research was exploratory in nature and was conducted in ongoing Institution of Higher Education. A conceptual model that postulated the relationship between the goal communication and commitment processes and various factors that influence those processes was developed and used. The research found eight new factors that influenced goal commitment, verified several previously documented commitment factors, and identified how managers can enable or inhibit communication of important goals. The principal finding was: Goal communication and commitment were enhanced when managers used organization's formal and informal processes in concert to support the goal. Communication of a goal and commitment to it were also influenced by: how organizational members perceive senior managers' commitment to the goal, the content of the goal, the importance of the goal to the organization, the appropriateness of the formal processes for the goal, and the way the informal processes reinforce, explain, and clarify the formal processes. One single management process is insufficient to cause goal communication and commitment. The principal implication of the research is that communication of a goal and securing commitment to it is a management imperative. Managers must manage by taking deliberate action to persuade organizational members of their commitment throughout the organization.
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