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Psychology 2060 Study Guide - Voicemail, Cascina Increa, Decapod Anatomy

Course Code
PSYCH 2060

of 9
February 7, 2013
Chapter 11: Organizational Communication
Non-Verbal Behavior in Communication
Types of Organizational Commitment
1. Upward communication communication within an organization from employees up to
Quality of upward communication is a significant factor in job satisfaction
Ideal upward communication: employees speak directly to management in an
environment with an “open door” policy
Direct upward communication may not work due to:
oPotential large volume of communication
oEmployees feel threatened by managers - unwilling to openly
communicate bad news or complaints
Serial communication – message is relayed from an employee to their supervisor
to the supervisor’s supervisor etc. until it reaches the top
oContent and tone of message changes as it moves from person to person
oMUM (minimize unpleasant messages) effect - bad news and complaints
are rarely relayed due to stress with delivering bad news; good survival
strategy for an employee
oInformal communication channels and proximity less effective the
farther away 2 people are from each other; proximity does not play a role
when messages are communicated through e-mail
Attitude surveys outside consultant conducts an annual questionnaire to
employees on their opinions of certain factors and given an opportunity to list
complaints or suggestions
oOnly useful if organizations take the results seriously
oOrganization should share survey results with employees to increase trust
Focus groups meeting with a group of current employees to get opinions and
suggestions and information is passed to management
Exit interviews – with employees voluntarily leaving an organization
Suggestion/complaint boxes upward communication where employees are
asked to place their suggestions in a box; allow immediate communication of
employees feelings anonymously
oMust respond to suggestions/complaints in a timely manner
oLarge organizations use web-based software that allow employees to
submit suggestions/complaints, notify management when one has been
received and keep the employee informed of the progress and outcome
3rd party facilitators increases upward communication; takes
complaints/suggestions and personally working with management to find a
oLiaison person who acts as an intermediary between employees and
management OR employee who sends and receives the most grapevine
oOmbudsperson person who investigates employees complaints and
solves problems; neutral and works towards a solution acceptable to
February 7, 2013
employees and management; supervised at vice-presidental level so they
are not scared of being fired or stepping on a few toes
oUnion steward in organizations with a union; has a difficult time
solving problems because they are not perceived by management or
union members as being neutral
2. Downward communication – communication within an organization from management to
Key method to keep employees informed and communicating vital information
needed for employees to perform their jobs
Bulletin boards informal or unimportant written information posted in a public
place; communicates non-work-related opportunities; low cost and wide
exposure especially if placed in high-traffic areas
oIn-house message networks electronic bulletin boards display even
more current information
Policy manual formal method where an organizations rules and procedures are
placed in a manual; legally binding by courts of law so they must be updated
every time a policy changes
oPolicy manual – specific and lengthy; contains all rules and policies
oEmployee handbook – shorter; contains most essential policies and rules
Newsletters communicate organizational feedback and celebrate employee
success; bolster employee morale by discussing happy events (3 B’s: babies,
birthdays, ball-game scores)
oGood source of information for celebrating employee successes,
providing feedback on the organization, introducing a new employee and
providing reminders about organizational changes
oCyber-publications saves printing expenses, faster dissemination of
information and provides flexibility for making changes and updates
Intranets computer-based employee communication network used exclusively
by one company
oReplaces bulletin boards, newsletter and company manuals
oRapid speed at which the company can survey employees about new
oOther advantages: employee self-service, convenience and 24-hour
support, reduced paper, printing and postage costs
3. Business communication transmission of business-related information among
employees, management and customers
Memos provides detailed information to a large number of people in a short
amount of time; replaced by e-mail
Telephone calls used to be that it was only appropriate when the message was
short and only a small number of people needed to receive it
oConference calls increased the number of people who can be reached
oFax machine allows detailed sketches or numbers to be sent to people in
different locations
oNon-verbal cues are not available so there is now video-enhanced
February 7, 2013
oConversations are not documented which may lead to blaming the wrong
E-mail and voicemail exchange general and timely information and ask
oAdvantages of voicemail - reduction in use of filing paper; time saved by
avoiding “small talk”
oDisadvantages of voicemail - may result in “phone tag”; reduces
opportunities for personal contact
oAdvantages of e-mail - ability to easily document the sending and
receiving of e-mail; opportunity to communicate with many people at
one time; potential for quick response times
oDisadvantages of e-mail misinterpretations due to absence of
paralanguage; tends to be too informal; increased likelihood of
expressing negative emotions; tendency not to proofread
Business meetings
oTypical employee spends 4.35 hours in 3.34 meetings/week
oSupervisors spend 6.6 hours in 5 meetings/week
oTime demands can result in negative employee attitudes
Office design
o“Open” or “landscaped” office design/”cube farm” large, open office
areas without walls
Separation by plants, bookcases, desks and partitions
Employees communicate better with each other, easier to
supervise and help without physical barriers
In 70% of organizations
Can increase contact and communication and are cheaper
Can lessen productivity and job satisfaction
oFreestanding/bullpen design all desks placed in a large area that is
completely open
oUniform plans desks placed at uniform distances and separated by
panels into cubical areas
oFree-form workstations combination of designs so different needs of
each worker is accommodated
oBoulevard wide hallway that runs through several departments; space
for employee communication and encourages employee interaction
oPortable offices containing employees computer, files and supplies
that can be wheeled into a walled office or cubicle when privacy is
4. Informal communication communication among employees not directly related to the
completing of an organizational task
Grapevine unofficial, informal communication network; common because they
provide employees with information, power and entertainment; usually contains a
lot of truth but is incomplete
4 grapevine patterns, David 1953
(1) Single-strand grapevine message is passed in chainlike fashion until the
chain is broken