Exploration of leadership challenges and resiliency during pandemic
August 16, 2021
Congratulations to Dr. Rosemary Vito, Associate Professor in the School of Social Work for receiving a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Partnership Engage Grant. She is the co-applicant on a project, Leadership Training During the Pandemic and Organization Integration, that will explore leaders’ challenges, opportunities, coping, resiliency, organizational supports, and resources during the pandemic.
The project was undertaken after recognizing the stress that leaders are currently facing in the wake of COVID-19. The project has involved ongoing consultation and collaboration with the CEOs of the partner agencies.
“Leadership coping and resiliency research is mostly conceptual in human services, and more empirical research is needed, especially as existing leadership models are not effective to address rapid and multidimensional change,” says Dr. Vito.
Dr. Vito’s project has received a grant of $24,878. The funding will allow the project to develop a website to share training materials and resources with the broader community. It will also allow two Social Work students to be trained as research assistants at their respective universities and mentored on all project aspects to develop research skills for the ensuing two years (2021-2023).
This is a shared research project with Dr. Alice Schmidt Hanbidge from Renison University College, University of Waterloo, which partnered with the Canadian Mental Health Association.
The project included the formation of online focus groups and surveying 25 senior directors and managers in four recently amalgamated mental health and addiction agencies. Once those tasks were completed, the data was analyzed to determine emerging themes.
The project team is presently writing a manuscript, the first of two peer-reviewed journal articles, for publication and will share a summary report with the partner organizations. They will also be working on two peer-reviewed conference presentations. Training materials and resources will be developed and shared through a project website. The team will conduct and evaluate a full-day management training workshop on leadership resiliency strategies with fifty senior directors and managers during the 2021-2022 year.