Swift sense of community: Resourcing artifacts for a rapid community emergence in a temporary organization
Hooria Jazaieri, Assistant Professor of Management
Reut Livne-Tarandach and Hooria Jazaieri, 2021: Swift Sense of Community: Resourcing Artifacts for Rapid Community Emergence in a Temporary Organization. AMJ, 64, 1127–1163, https://doi.org/10.5465/amj.2019.0410
Relational sense of community (SOC) research suggests that SOC depends on the depth of relationships cultivated between members over time. The rise of temporary organizations—transient work arrangements with limited expectations for future interactions—implored us to consider how a swift SOC can emerge in temporary organizations, where the cultivation of relationships may be challenging. We introduce a broader relational approach and draw on high-quality connections and resourcing theories to examine how a swift SOC emerges. Utilizing rich data sources, our qualitative analyses present a swift SOC cultivated in five days in a sleepaway summer camp. We find that this swift SOC was built on brief supportive connections that were made durable by resourcing artifacts. Resourcing artifacts creates scaffolds that mobilize actors to create a web of connections, leading to an organization-wide swift SOC. We propose that a swift SOC can emerge through four intertwined resourcing artifact phases: initial resourcing, embracing resourcing, reinterpreting resourcing, and expanding resourcing. During these phases, individuals imbue artifacts with new meaning and resource artifacts for (a) dyadic connection, (b) staff coordination, and (c) membership in a subgroup and (d) an organization-wide community. We demonstrate symbolizing and momentary connections as novel resourcing mechanisms enabling this process.