Organizational Communication

by ;
Edition: 2nd
Format: Paperback
Pub. Date: 2020-10-19
Publisher(s): Oxford University Press
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Organizational Communication: A Lifespan Approach is a student-focused introduction to the field. Featuring real-world stories, helpful and unique illustrations, and practical applications of theory, this text engages students and shows them how to apply concepts, theories, and perspectives in every chapter.

Organizational Communication helps students understand their communication as participants in organizations throughout their lifetimes. It begins with how pre-career experiences influence our expectations for organizational experiences and ends with organizational exits, including retirement. This approach provides a seamless integration of theory and application while helping students at any stage of life reflect on past experiences, prepare for new endeavors and roles, and understand vital organizational theories and perspectives in new and concrete ways.

Author Biography

Michael W. Kramer is Professor in the Department of Communication at the University of Oklahoma.

Ryan S. Bisel is Professor in the Department of Communication at the University of Oklahoma.

Table of Contents

About the Authors

1. Introduction
Defining Communication
Information Transfer
Shared Meaning
Transactional Meaning Creation
--Applying the Three Definitions of Communication
Working Definition
Defining Organizations
A Legal Definition of Organizations
A Communicative Definition of Organizations
A Social Definition of Organizations
The Complexity of Defining Communication in Organizations
Strategic Ambiguity
--Ethical Issue: Strategic Ambiguity
Nonverbal Communication
--Applying the Three Nonverbal Criteria
--Communication Challenge: Office Design
Perspectives on Organizational Communication
A Post-Positivist Perspective
An Interpretive Perspective
A Critical Perspective
--Applying the Three Organizational Perspectives
Other Perspectives
Application to Different Types of Organizations
Preview of the Book
Key Terms

2. Communication and Anticipatory Socialization
Anticipatory Role Socialization
--Communication Challenge: Realistic Expectations
Previous Experience
--Communication Challenge: Comparing Workplaces
The "Real Job" Colloquialism
--Ethical Issue: Deconstructing Our Labels
Anticipatory Role Socialization for Volunteers
Summary of Anticipatory Role Socialization
Anticipatory Organizational Socialization
Person-Job Fit
Selection Process
--R?sum?s and Cover Letters
--Screening Interviews
--Communication Challenge: Improving Interviews
Follow-up or Second Interviews
Realistic Job Previews
--Ethical Issue: Inappropriate Interview Questions
--Communication Challenge: The New Technology of the Job Search
Anticipatory Organizational Socialization for Volunteers
Summary of Anticipatory Organizational Socialization
Key Terms

3. Communication and Organizational Encounter
Uncertainty Management Theory
Newcomer Socialization Through Orientation and Training
Socialization Strategies
Socialization Strategy Outcomes
--Ethical Issue: Mixed Messages
Newcomers and Communication Exchange
Information Seeking
Information Sources
--Communication Challenge: Trusted Colleague
Information Giving
Communication Exchange
Encounter Outcomes
Boundary Passages
--Functional Boundaries
--Hierarchical Boundaries
--Inclusionary Boundaries
--Ethical Issue: Vocabulary of Hierarchy
Differences Between Expectations and Experiences
General Newcomer Adaptation
Newcomers in Volunteer Organizations
Key Terms

4. Communication and Management Theory
Classical Management Theory
Frederick Taylor's Classical Management Theory
Henri Fayol's General Management Theory
--Communication Challenge: Communication and Span of Control
Weber's Bureaucratic Theory
Douglas McGregor's Theory X
Classical Management Today
Human Relations Management
Hawthorne Studies
--Communication Challenge: Are Happy Workers Productive Workers?
Human Relations Management Today
Human Resource Management
--Ethical Issue: Humans as Resources
Some Roots of Human Resource Management: McGregor's Theory Y
Principles of Human Resource Management
Human Resource Management Today
--Communication Challenge: Motivation at Despair, Inc.
Teamwork or Theory Z Management
--Ethical Issue: Top-Level Management and Organizing for the Short Term?
Principles of Teamwork
Teamwork and Concertive Control
--Ethical Issue: Is Control Ethical?
Teamwork Management Today
Management Approaches to Volunteers
--Communication Challenge: Communicating to Reduce Volunteer Turnover
--Applying the Three Organizational Perspectives to Management Theory
Key Terms

5. Communication Channels and Structures
Traditional Communication Channels and Structures
Formal Downward Communication
Issues with Downward Communication
--Amount of Information
--Nature of Feedback
--Information Distribution
Formal Upward Communication
Issues with Upward Communication
--Communication Challenge: Technology Application for Suggestions Boxes
--Lack of Receptivity
--Power Differentials
--Communication Challenge: Dealing with the Normal Alteration of Upward Communication
--Upward "Distortion"
--Self-Promotion or Ingratiation
Horizontal or Lateral Communication
Issues with Lateral Communication
--Lack of Incentive
Informal Communication
Issues with Informal Communication
--Ethical Issue: Gossip's Messiness
--Mid-Level Employee Participation
--The Competence Network
Integrative Communication Structures
--Quality Circles
--Project Teams
Limitations of Traditional Communication Channels Approach
Communication Networks
Collecting Network Data
Characteristics of Networks
--Linkage Characteristics
--Individual Roles
--Communication Challenge: Reducing Employee Turnover by Cultivating Network Density
--Group-Level Characteristics
--Organizational or System-Level Characteristics
Impact of Communication Networks
Limitations of Network Analysis
Nonprofit Organizations and Volunteers
Key Terms

6. Communication and Organizational Culture
Defining Organizational Culture
Interactions of Various Members
Structuration Theory and Culture
--Communication Challenge: Communicating a New Value
Organizational Norms
Types of Norms
Communication Norms
Norm Development
Creating Conformity to Norms
Three Approaches to Culture
An Integrated Perspective
A Differentiated Perspective
A Fragmented Perspective
--Applying Martin's Three Perspectives on Organizational Culture
A Critique of Applying the Three Perspectives
Analyzing Organizational Culture
Script (or Narrative) Analysis
Ritual Analysis
Metaphor Analysis
--Ethical Issue: Enron's Metaphors
Reflective Comment Analysis
A Comparison of Five Methods of Cultural Analysis
--Applying Three Research Perspectives to Organizational Culture
Key Terms

7. Communication with Organizational Members
Supervisor-Subordinate Communication
Average Supervisor Communication Style
--Interaction Patterns
--Openness to Communication
--Upward Distortion
--Upward Influence
--Semantic Information Distance
--Communication Challenge: The Pelz Effect
--Effective Versus Ineffective Supervisors
--Systemic Factors
--Communication Challenge: "Living" Versus "Having" an Open-Door Policy
Differentiated Supervisor Communication Style
--Partnership Relationships
--Overseer Relationships
--Middle-Group Relationships
--Relationship Development
Outcomes of Supervisor-Subordinate Communication
Summary of Supervisor-Subordinate Communication
Peer Communication
Peer Social Support
Types of Peer Communication Relationships
Outcomes of Peer Communication
Workplace Friendships
Summary of Peer and Friendship Relations
Interaction of Supervisor and Peer Communication
Summary of Supervisor-Peer Relationship Interaction
Mentor(ing) Communication
--Communication Challenge: Mentoring Communication
Summary of Mentoring
--Communication Challenge: Upside Down Mentoring?
Emotion Management in Interpersonal Interactions
The Nature of Emotions in Interactions
--Ethical Issue: The Moral "Signaling" Function of Emotions
Types of Emotions
Emotion Management
--Communication Challenge: Peer Communication and Emotion Management
Volunteers and Interpersonal Relationships
Key Terms

8. Communication and Leadership
Managerial or Group Leadership
Managerial Leadership as Traits
Models of Management Styles
Situational Models of Managerial Leadership
Contingency Models of Managerial Leading
External Communication Focus of Managers
Dialectical Theory and Managerial Leadership
--Communication Challenge: African American Women Executives' Leadership Communication
Managerial Leadership and Volunteers
Summary of Managerial Leadership
Organizational Leadership
Charismatic Leadership
Visionary Leadership
Transformational (versus Transactional) Leadership
Institutional Leadership
Framing Theory
--Communication Challenge: Framing and Managerial Leadership
Organizational Leadership of Volunteers
--Ethical Issue: Leaders' Moral Talk Is Contagious (in a Good Way)
The Dark Side of Managerial and Organizational Leadership
Comparing Managerial and Organizational Leadership
Key Terms

9. Communication and Decision-Making
A Prescriptive Model of Decision-Making
The Model
--Communication Challenge: Improving Decision-Making Through Brainstorming
Descriptive Models of Decision-Making
Phase Models
Alternative Descriptive Models
The Spiral Model
Vigilant Interaction Theory
--Communication Challenge: Leading Group Decisions
Multiple Sequence Model
Alternative Decision-Making Processes
Garbage Can Model
Retrospective Rationality
--Ethical Issue: Retrospective Rationality
Faulty Decision-Making
Other Characteristics of Ineffective Decision-Making
--Communication Challenge: Avoiding Groupthink and Ineffective Decision-Making Practices
Overcoming Faulty Decision Making: HRO Theory
Decision-Making in Volunteer Organizations
Key Terms

10. Communication and Conflict
Defining Conflict
Typologies of Conflict
Level of Conflicts
--Intrapersonal Conflict
--Interpersonal Conflicts
--Intergroup Conflicts
--Interorganizational Conflicts
Content of Conflicts
Visibility of Conflicts
Conflict as Dysfunctional and Functional
Conflict Styles
Bargaining and Negotiation in Conflict
--Ethical Issue: Ethical Bargaining
Managing Conflict Through Third Parties
Communication and Conflict with Abusive Coworkers
Workplace Bullying
--Defining Workplace Bullying
--Ethical Issue: Wanting to Belong and Participation in Social Bullying
--Characteristics of Perpetrators
--Characteristics of Targets
--Environmental Factors
--Effects of Bullying
--Coping with Bullying
--Addressing Bullying
Sexual Harassment
--Defining Sexual Harassment
--Ethical Issue: Sender or Receiver Priority
--Causes of Sexual Harassment
--Effects of Sexual Harassment
--Coping with Sexual Harassment
--Addressing Sexual Harassment
Conflict in Nonprofit/Volunteer Settings
Key Terms

11. Communication, Power, and Resistance
Power and Influence
Ideology (or Ideologies)
Surface and Deep Structure Power
Surface Level Power
Types of Power
--Communication Challenge: Increasing Personal Power
Reasons for Power Relationships
--Power as Resource Dependency
--Power as Social Exchange
--Power and Personal Characteristics
Deep Structure Power
--Communication Challenge: Muting Voices of the Mistreated
Resistance to Power
--Ethical Issue: Ethics and Decaf Resistance
Voice and Resistance
--Ethical Issue: Boat Rocking and Whistleblowing
Upward Dissent Strategies
Silence, Resistance, and Voice
Power and Resistance in Nonprofits and Volunteers
Key Terms

12. Communication and Work-Nonwork Issues
The Changing Workplace
General Causes of Work-Life Conflict
--Time-Based Conflict
--Strain-Based Conflict
--Behavior-Based Conflict
Specific Causes of Work-Life Conflict
Social Norms That Increase Work-Life Conflict
--Ethical Issue: To Work or Not to Work, That Is the Question
Outcomes of Work-Life Conflict
Managing Work-Life Boundaries
--Communication Challenge: Choosing Communication Media for Boundary Management in Global Virtual Organizing
--Ethical Issue: Segmenting Salaried Workers
Family-Friendly Work Policies
Positive Effects of Family-Friendly Policies
--Communication Challenge: Unintended Consequences of Family-Life Policies
Problematic Issues of Family-Friendly Policies
--Career Repercussions
--Difficulty Negotiating Leave Policies
--Peer Pressure Against Using the Policy
--Resistance to Work-Life Integration
Work-Family Third-Place (Life Enrichment) Balance
Volunteer Roles
Types of Volunteering
Work-Family-Life Enrichment Balance
--Ethical Issue: Disingenuous Volunteering?
Key Terms

13. Communication and the Changing Work Environment: Technology, Diversity, and Globalization
Systems Theory
Defining Change
Reactions to Change
Diffusion of Innovation
Change and Emotion
--Communication Challenge: Resisting Changes or Change Communication
Communication and Change
--Communication Challenge: Design a Ceremony
Changing Communication Technology
Media Richness Theory
Changes in Communication Expectations
--Changing How Meaning Is Established
--Ethical Issue: Organizational Image Versus Personal Social Media Use
--Changing Decision-Making Expectations
--Communication Challenge: Creating a Collaborative Organizational Policy of Internet Usage
--Changing Interpersonal Communication Interactions
--Ethical Issue: Using Social Media to Convey and Express Private Opinions
Summary of Changing Communication Technology
Cultural Diversity: The Changing Workforce
Cultural Diversity and Communication
Cultural Diversity in the Workplace
--Ethical Issue: Creating Teams
Influence of Diversity on Group and Organizational Effectiveness
Summary of Cultural Diversity
Change and Nonprofit Organizations and Volunteers
Changes in Funding and Collaboration
Changing Volunteers
Culturally Diverse Understandings of Volunteers
Globalization and Volunteers
Key Terms

14. Communication During Career and Organizational Transitions
Sensemaking Theory
Individual Career Transitions
Communication and Promotions
Promotion Selection Context
--Ethical Issue: Promotion Types and Bias
The Selection Process for Promotions
Promotion Process
Communication and Job Transfers
Communication and Domestic Job Transfers
--Purposes of Domestic Job Transfers
--The Process for Job Transfers
--Pre-Move or Loosening Phase
--Effects on the Workgroup
Communication and International Job Transfers
Communication and Career Plateaus
Organizational Transitions
Mergers and Acquisitions (M&As)
The M&A Process
--The Pre-Merger Phase
--The In-Play Phase
--Communication Challenge: Rumors and Sensemaking
--Transition Phase
--Ethical Issue: Leading the Combining of Two Cultures
--The Stabilization Phase
Reductions-in-Force or Layoffs
Pre-Announcement Phase
Announcement Phase
Post-Layoff Phase
Individual and Organizational Transitions for Volunteers
Key Terms

15. Communication During Organizational Exit
Social Exchange Theory
Voluntary Exit
Planned Exits
Gradual Disenchantment
Mixed Reasons for Voluntary Turnover
--Network Location
--Career Opportunities
--Career Changes
The Voluntary Exit Process
--The Preannouncement Phase
--The Announcement Phase
--The Exit Phase
--Exit Interviews
--Communication Challenge: Exit Interviews with College Interns
Involuntary Exit
Immediate or Summary Dismissal
Progressive Discipline
--Ethical Issue: Fired over Facebook
--Communication Challenge: The EAGR Approach to Giving Corrective Feedback
A Third Form of Exit
Exit and Volunteers
Key Terms
A Dark Side of Organizational Membership
Socialization and Individualization

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