Date of Conferral

2016

Degree

Ph.D.

School

Human Services

Advisor

Dr. Sxott Hershberger

Abstract

Shared values and norms are at the core for unifying different cultures socializing or working to fulfill the goals and mission of organizations. Researchers have not examined how employees representing different cultures socialize via shared norms and values in human service companies. The purpose of this ethnography study was to explore the process of 8 culturally different employees working together at a human service organization. Using purposeful sampling, multicultural employees were selected from 4 departments within the human service company. Face-to-face interviews, field notes, questionnaire, and participant observation were the tools for collecting the data. Descriptive coding, value coding, and the Ethnograph software was used to identify themes from the data. The analysis of the data evolved from using the approach of the hermeneutic circle, which consisted of examining the parts, such as activities and the connection to the whole, such as core values. According to the study, most employees engaged in sharing the norms and values of the human service company, ultimately fulfilling the goals or core values. However, 2 out of 8 participants engaged in conflict and had a lack of knowledge about 1 out of 4 core values. Knowledge and compliance to the core values were fundamental ingredients for providing quality services. This study leads to positive social change by providing human service organizations information on compliance to the entire core values of the human service company and knowledge of the complete core values of the human service company.