SOCW6070 Walden University Southeastern Planning Group Case Study Discussion

Due by 06/27/2019 by 5 PM EST

Read a selection of your colleagues’ posts.

Respond to at least two colleagues by critiquing their short-term strategies for addressing the SPG case study.

Response to Lisa

Discussion Post

Southeastern Planning Group Analysis of the Change

The Southeastern Planning Group (SPG) is a group that was developed to facilitate the process of the continuum of care for the Office of Housing and Urban Development’s (HUD) (Plummer, Makris, & Brocksen, 2014). This group had functioned for 5 years under the group’s founding director and 21 member board. The primary functions of the system within SPG are outreach, intake, assessment, emergency shelter, transitional housing, permanent housing, and permanent supportive housing (Plummer et al., 2014).

After 5 years of serving as the group’s director, the director abruptly resigned. This led to rumors and unrest in the community and with stakeholders that the board had forced her out of her position and due to her inability to accomplish the goals and objectives and move the agency forward. Approximately one month later, a new executive director (ED) was hired. One of the first priorities of the new ED was to restructure and make the group more efficient. In doing this, two employees who had been with the group since it’s creation were let go. This led to additional talk and concerns within the community and among stakeholders. There were concerns raised that the new ED was self-serving and not in the best interest of the agency. Although there were some not in support of the new ED, there were some who support what they were hopeful the new ED would do for the agency.

Strategy to Improve the Organizational Climate and Optimal Functioning

One leadership strategy the new SPG ED could utilize is vision (Plummer et al., 2014). Visionary leadership is identified as a key to organizational change according to charismatic leadership theory (Northouse, 2018). Vision is also considered a defining characteristic of leadership and is deemed one of the seven habits of highly effective people. To have vision, one begins with the end in mind, and with that creates a picture of moving beyond the status quo to a vision of the future (Northouse, 2018).

There are five characteristics in which vision encompasses. These characteristics are a picture, a change, values, a map, and a challenge (Northouse, 2018). The new ED should engage the stakeholders, community, employees, and board, by creating a picture of the agency in the future that represents the agency as an ideal image of what it is going to be which would make it better than the status quo. This new picture should be more exciting, affirming, and/or inspiring and gets people excited. The next characteristic is a vision that represents the change that will motivate the agency to move toward a more positive future by taking the effective and best features of the agency’s foundation and builds upon that to doing things in a better, more efficient, and effective way to accomplish the new goal. The third visionary characteristic is a vision with values and that these values demonstrate meaning and purpose, and that there are an appreciation and understanding of all invested parties’ as well as the agency’s values. The fourth characteristic of vision is a map that leads the way and gives direction to keep the desired changes on target. This map should include direction with short and long term goals. The final characteristic of vision is a challenge; however, not in the sense of difficulty, but rather a sense of duty to embrace the positive changes, to harness the motivation, passion, and excitement to rise to the occasion to be a part of something great and to do something great that will positively impact the lives of others (Northouse, 2018).

By utilizing a visionary approach to engage and excite the base of stakeholders, the new ED can change the perspective from the rumor mill, embrace the positives and foundation of the agency, while moving it forward to accomplish great things. This will create a new fire within those who are truly there to do great things for those around impacted by this agency. Additionally, it may open up new potential for collaboration, ideas, and resources to make an even greater impact on the individuals and families the agency is there to serve.


Northouse, P. G. (2018). Introduction to leadership: Concepts and practice (4th ed.). Washington, DC: Sage.

Plummer, S.-B., Makris, S., & Brocksen, S. M. (Eds.). (2014b). Social work case studies: Concentration year. Baltimore, MD: Laureate International Universities Publishing [Vital Source e-reader].


Response to Hilda

An Analysis of the Change That Took Place in the SPG.

The director of the Southeast Planning Group (SPG) suddenly resigned. There are rumors in the organization she was forced out by the board of directors. After her abrupt departure, a new director was hired. The new director decreased the staff from 5 to 3 eliminating 2 positions. The resigned director and the eliminated staff had a strong relationship with the community and business partners. The changes created distrust and lack of confidence in the new director and board by the employees, community, and business partners (Plummer, Makris & Brocksen, 2014).

Strategy That Might Improve the Organizational Climate and Return the Organization to Optimal Functioning.

Engagement would be used as a strategy to improve the organization. The new director will meet individually with each employee. The meeting will consist of a report on what they are currently working on and any suggestions they may have to assist with the transition. A reoccurring department meeting would be established to allow the employees input on planning and providing constructive feedback on changes. Employees need to be involved in the change process to assist with employee acceptance of the changes (Finley, Rogers, Napier & Wyatt, 2011). Engaging employees in the changes will be time consuming; however, it is needed to assist the organization to perform at the highest standard. Engaging and educating employees will let them feel that they have a voice and will help to rebuild trust in the organization.


Finley, D. S., Rogers, G., Napier, M., & Wyatt, J. (2011). From needs-based segmentation to program realignment: Transformation of YWCA of Calgary. Administration in Social Work, 35(3), 299–323. Retrieved from

Plummer, S.-B., Makris, S., & Brocksen, S. M. (Eds.). (2014b). Social work case studies: Concentration year. Baltimore, MD: Laureate International Universities Publishing [Vital Source e-reader]

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