Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy



First Advisor

Dr. John Austin

Second Advisor

Dr. Dale Brethower

Third Advisor

Dr. Maria Malott

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Robert Brinkerhoff


A small business servicing dealerships in the chimney lining industry was responsible for training and resupplying contractors in a propriety chimney lining system. A process was developed for sharing and comparing the dealerships' financial reports and business processes. The process involved a small group of dealers attending regular 6-month meetings called Impact Groups. A monetary incentive system was used to encourage dealers to join the Impact Groups and to maintain continued attendance and participation. Dealers took turns hosting the meetings and having the attending dealers analyze their business. A detailed list of problems and solutions was provided to each host business. The dealers' performances were measured and continually monitored along three variables which included their businesses weekly dollar production, estimates written, and their total backlog of work to do. The Impact Groups showed little to no effectiveness in improving the dealers' performances in the above variables.

Access Setting

Dissertation-Open Access