Chapter 4: A Qualitative Examination: Ways of Leading Among Non-Profit Executives
From the Book: The Refractive Thinker®: Vol. II: Research Methodology, Second Edition


Non-profit organizations have been neglected in the mainstream research and inadequately explored to determine what kind of leadership is present. This qualitative study examined ways of leading, as expressed through the lived experiences of seasoned executives. Context-bound,
holistic reflections invited the emergence of themes assessed through content analysis. The
study relied on an iterative data gathering process. Further, it applied a series of three in-depth interviews per subject, as advocated by Seidman (1998), as a mechanism for exploring the ways of leading exhibited among successful, seasoned non-profit leaders. In doing so, this journey reveals characteristics that are commonly held among those profiled, and suggests what non-profit leadership looks like. This examination conveys the context of leadership through lived experiences, and, by considering the perspectives of those who both model character and meet the financial expectations of their organizations, key conclusions can be considered for transfer.
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