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Organizational Goals: Differences Between Park and Recreation Managers and Board or Commission Members

Christopher R. Edginton, Robert Madrigal, Samuel Lankford, Daniel Wheeler

Abstract


The purpose of this study was to determine the difference in perceptions of organizational goals between professional park and recreation managers and citizen board or commission members. Perceptions regarding both the importance of current and future (or anticipated) goals were considered. The sampling frame included managers and board members in both municipal government and special recreation and park districts. The study analyzed 59 goal statements (subsequently reduced to 26) arranged in aLikerttype format.

The goals of an organization shape the overall culture in which the organization operates. Goals are important because they not only reflect an agency's philosophy, they also influence the way resources are directed. Consequently, they inevitably shape both the current and future state of the organization. More succinctly, goals may be thought of as the summary and articulation of the organization's purpose.

The major findings of the study were:
1. The organizational goals considered more important were those associated with "services provided" and "management activities."
2. Although all respondents perceived goals pertaining to services as being important, managers perceived the future importance of these goals as being extremely important.
3. While managers perceived management goals-both current and future status-to be extremely important, board members held a slightly lower opinion of the importance of these goals.
4. District board members (elected officials) perceived services to be significantly more important than did municipal board members (appointed officials).?


Keywords


Goals, organizational goals,local park and recreation agencies, citizen board or commission members, city park and recreation departments, special recreation and park districts.

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