teams, which enhances perceptions of control (e.g., Thomas & McDaniel, 1990) and feasibility. The most relevant organizational-level factor is the availability of resources, which is at the core of this conflict, and has been found to affect perceptions of control and feasibility (Dutton, Stumpf & Wagner, 1990).


This study was conducted as part of a larger project funded by the Ohio Department of Mental Health, Office of Program Evaluation and Research (grant #91-1003), examining the impact of the Act on Boards and mental health agencies. The perceptual measures used here were assessed in a mail survey of 540 decision makers in Ohio's 53 Boards. The work experience measure was a composite of age, managerial experience and total work experience, averaged across respondents within Boards. Information processing capacity was measured by Thomas and McDaniel's (1990) 9-item scale. Resource adequacy, both currently and in the future, was assessed with an 18-item scale. Control frame was measured by a 5-item scale, perceived feasibility of implementing the Act by an 8-item scale, and the quality of the working relationship with ODMH by a 4-item scale. Board stance in the lawsuit, obtained from lawyers involved in the case, was coded so that higher numbers indicate greater resistance: defendant = 1, intervenor = 2, non-party = 3, plaintiff = 4. The organization was the referent for all perceptual items and was the focal unit for hypothesis testing.


The individual response rate for the survey was 29% (156/540), but the rate was better for higher-level individuals (e.g., 68% for Executive Directors). The response rate for Boards was 91% (48/53), with an average of 3.3 responses per Board. The internal consistency of the scales, assessed at the individual level, was acceptable; Cronbach alphas ranged from .74 to .91. Convergence among respondents within Boards was assessed with James, Demaree & Wolf's (1993) IRR index, except for the experience measure, which was not expected to converge across individuals. The IRR values for the perceptual measures (.77 to .91) justify aggregation.

Separate path analyses were conducted for the models with feasibility versus control, using RAMONA, a structural equation modeling program contained in the SYSTAT statistical package (Wilkinson & Hill, 1994). Model testing followed Medsker, Williams and Holahan's (1994) guidelines. The a priori models and subsequent revised models were compared to a null model with no causal links. Four fit indices were used: the normed and nonnormed fit indices (NFI, NNFI), the comparative fit index (CFI), which is resistant to errors associated with sample size, and the parsimonious model fit index (PFI), which adjusts for degrees of freedom in the target model. Values of .90 and greater indicate adequate fit for the first three, and .60 and above has been suggested as the guideline for PFI.

The a priori model using control did not show adequate fit: NFI = .74, NNFI = .72, CFI = .84, PFI = .49. Comparison of the original and reproduced correlations suggested three additional direct paths, as described below. This slightly revised model demonstrated excellent fit: NFI = .94, NNFI = 1.13, CFI = .95. PFI (.55) is somewhat low, but is deflated by the modest sample size.

The results for the revised model using control (Figure 1) support four of the five predicted paths. Quality of working relationship has a strong negative path to organizational resistance, and the path from control to quality of working relationship is positive. (The lack of a direct path from control to organizational resistance suggests that quality of working relationship is a complete mediator here.) Two context variables (work experience and resource availability) show direct paths to control. Three paths were added: from experience to working relationship and to organizational resistance, and from information processing capacity to organizational resistance.

The a priori model using feasibility did not show adequate fit: NFI = .65, NNFI = .50, CFI = .71, PFI = .38. Comparison of the original and reproduced correlations suggested four additional paths, as described below.

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