Organizational Communication

1. Communication: the transference and understanding of meaning
2. Functions of Communication

3. A Perceptual Model of Communication
(1). Sender behavior          Each culture has a vocabulary of language, rituals, gestures, ceremonies, and routines in express meaning Discussion: how many ways of expressing concern or love for others? Thought or conceptual component

Feeling, or emotional component

 (2) Receiver behavior Failure of communication in corporate America: Discussion: sources of distortion and misunderstanding in the communication process.

4. A Contingent Model for Choosing Media

(1). Information richness of a media: the potential information-carrying capacity of a media

Discussion: the information richness of various media


(2). Complexity of problem/situation


Discussion: how do you choose the media of communication according to the complexity of problem/situation?

5. One-way vs. two-way communication


Discussion: the comparative advantage and disadvantage of one-way vs. two-way communication

6. Verbal vs. Nonverbal communication

    Nonverbal communication: the transference and understanding of meaning without the use of written or spoken words

    Discussion: please clarify various forms of nonverbal communication

7. Defensive vs. non-defensive communication

8. Effective interpersonal communication

9. Formal vs. informal networks in organizational communication

10. Formal small-group networks  

Discussion: compare the speed, accuracy, emergence of a leader, and member satisfaction of the three types of formal networks

Grapevine patterns and implications:


Discussion: why people believe in more information from informal channels?

11. Directions of Organizational Information Flow


Question: how to increase upward communication?

Question: what are the personal/organizational barriers to horizontal communication?


12. Information Distortion in Organizational Communication

Discussion: Sources of unintentional information distortion

Discussion: Sources of intentional information distortion

13. The Johari Window
Two dimensions:

Four areas: Two processes Four kinds of people


Proposition: the larger the open area the better


Question: why are people reluctant to fully disclose their feelings, thoughts, and experiences, how to promote disclosure and feedback?

14. Communication Barriers between Women and Men (Deborah Tannen)

Basic assumption: communication is a continual balancing effort of juggling the conflicting needs for intimacy and independence


Women: speak and hear a language of connection and intimacy


Men: speak and hear a language of status and independence


Discussion: what are the communication barriers between women and men due to their different needs?



The Impact of Electronic Communication

 1. Communication in the computerized information age

(1). Internet: a global network of computer networks

Intranet: an organization's private internet.

Purpose: find, create, manage, and distribute information globally

Discussion: how to use Internet to find and compete for a job.

(2). E-mail: send computer-generated text and documents through internet/intranet
  Discussion: the potential benefits and costs of using e-mail

Discussion: why e-mail communication is not enough


(3). Collaborative computing and groupware: the use of computer software and hardware to facilitate teamwork and cooperation  
(4) Pager, fax machine, cellular phones, voice mail

(5). Telecommuting: receive and sending work from home to the office by using the phone or computer links


Discussion: what types of jobs are suited for telecommuting?

2. The Impact of Computerized Electronic Communication on Organizations and Organizational Behavior

Cross-cultural Communication

 1. Communication styles in contractual culture (US, UK)

(1). Purpose of communication: impersonal transactions satisfying individual needs, task/short-term oriented.


(2). Contents to be communicated

 2. Communication styles in a connectual culture (Japan, China, Southern Italy)

(1). Purpose of communication: establishing and maintaining networks of personal connections, relation/long-term oriented.

(2). Contents to be communicated

Example: Zen in China and Japan

Discussion: possible communication difficulties between contractual/connectual cultures?

Discussion: the comparative advantage and disadvantage of contractual vs. connectual communication

3. Power distance communication between superior and subordinates

(1). High power distance/cooperative (Japan)


(2). Low power distance/competitive (US, Australia)


Discussion: the comparative advantage and disadvantage of these two types of communication?

 4. Sequential vs. Synchronic culture

Sequential culture:

Synchronic culture Discussion: the comparative advantage and disadvantage of sequential vs. synchronic communication