This qualitative research adopts a narrative inquiry methodology for disclosing the lived experience of hope as expressed by for-profit educational institution students who will soon be entering the workforce. The research question is: what can be learned about non-traditional student lived hope experience in a for-profit education institution by using hope theory (Snyder, Harris, Anderson, Holleran, Irving, and Sigmon, 1991) to elucidate hope’s structural elements through an interpretive narrative inquiry? Results indicate that for these participants hope is a sense of affirmative openness toward cognitively and behaviorally engaging with opportunities in the possibilities the future offers. Further, narrative analysis is shown to make visible hope’s structural indicators. The inquiry contributes additional insights for organizational scholars and practitioners by further advancing hope as a purposeful narrative interpretation of experience. This exploration of hope suggests that narrative inquiry interventions may facilitate the kinds of conversations through which organization managers can facilitate effectiveness by amplifying workforce hopefulness.
Hope, Organization Behavior, Narrative Inquiry