Managing internal communication: an organizational case study

Robson, Paul J A and Tourish, Dennis (2005) Managing internal communication: an organizational case study. Corporate Communications: An International Journal, 10 (3). pp. 213-222. ISSN 1356-3289

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– The primary objective of this article is to explore what senior managers think they should be doing to improve communication in their organization, what they actually do in communication terms, and the high work load which senior managers undertake.

– This understanding is advanced by using the results of a communication audit which was conducted in a major European health‐care organization (HCO) undergoing significant internal re‐organization. A communication audit can be defined as: “a comprehensive and thorough study of communication philosophy, concepts, structure, flow and practice within an organisation”. It assists managers by “providing an objective picture of what is happening compared with what senior executives think (or have been told) is happening”.

– First, senior managers who over‐work are even less likely to have the time for reflection, followed by behaviour change. Second, the absence of adequate upward communication may blind managers to the full nature of their problems, which in turn guides the search for solutions.

Research limitations/implications
– Clearly there is a need to examine other types of organizations to establish the universality of the communication issues and problems that were found in a large HCO in Europe, using both quantitative and qualitative methodologies.

Practical implications
– The data suggest that attempting to cover up communication weaknesses by managers working even longer hours only has the effect of further disempowering people, and so accentuating rather than alleviating the underlying difficulty.

– The article has value to fellow academics and managers in practice and contributes to the debate on upward communication and the workload of managers.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Corporate communications, Overwork, Health services
Schools and Departments: University of Sussex Business School > Business and Management
Depositing User: Stacey Goldup
Date Deposited: 13 Jun 2017 06:08
Last Modified: 13 Jun 2017 06:08
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