Intrinsic Case Study on the Influence of Social Media Content on a Zoological Organization

Intrinsic Case Study on the Influence of Social Media Content on a Zoological Organization

Author: 
Kristine F. Meze-Burtis
Program of study: 
D.M.
Abstract: 
The purpose of this qualitative intrinsic case study was to examine the influence of social media content on a zoological organization. To examine the problem of how social media influenced employee perceptions, an intrinsic case study was conducted to explore the influence of social media on a zoological park. Supported by social learning theory and mass communication theory, the study explored various themes to express the different perceptions of zoological employees through social media. The sample size of this study consisted of 18 zoological employees representing five different departments between the ages of 18 and 56 with an average of 12.20 years of experience in a zoological park in California. Findings of this study revealed a variety of perceptions on the influence of social media on a zoological organization and many participants perceived social media use by the organization and the employees as a vital step in correcting misinformation that has led to changed perceptions about zoos and aquariums. The findings of the study will assist zoological organizational leaders to make better-informed decisions in regard to how the content is handled as perceived by the employees. The study will also help stakeholders understand the perceptions of the information and how the organizations reaction to misinformation may influence the employees and change perceptions about zoological establishments.
Dedication: 
I dedicate this dissertation to my dad Bob Meze who always encouraged me to explore education and continue to challenge myself personally and professionally. Thank you for teaching me so many valuable life lessons including the advice that anything can be taken from you, except your education. Your true leadership, love, and guidance have been the most influential aspect on my decision to continue my education. My work ethic, commitment to family, and love for animals was influenced by my late mother Jan Meze. I wish you were here to celebrate.
Acknowledgements: 
Thank you to my husband who has sacrificed time and money for me to continue my education. Tyler Burtis you have always encouraged me to expand my knowledge in leadership and to always reflect on decisions I make and how this affects others. Your expertise and success in building relationships have been inspirational. The doctoral journey is not easy, but when you have someone like my husband in your corner, anything is possible! Thank you to my Dad Bob Meze, my sister Kim Humphries, my brother Shawn Meze, and my daughters Megan Burtis and Sarah Burtis for your love and support. Thank you to my animals, Saki, Cabo, Izzy, and Sydney who spent many hours at my feet while studying and writing. Thank you to my coworkers, both people and animals for inspiring me every day to be a better leader. Thank you to Kevin and Susan Poncin who opened their home for three years during my residencies and provided friendship and support during some very challenging times. Being away from home and my animals was bearable with my study buddy Charlie! Thank you to my wonderful committee: Dr. Sandra Nunn, who stepped in and provided exceptional leadership and support. I thank you for your time, energy, and guidance needed to complete my dissertation. Also to Dr. Patricia D’Urso, and Dr. Ina Marie Peoples, thank you for your commitment and exceptional learning provided during courses and as my committee. I am very privileged to have worked with each of you and appreciate all of the guidance and direction that you have given me. Thank you to all of my friends, cohorts, and professional associates who have been on this journey with me. Your enthusiasm, questions, and encouragement gave me the strength to continue.