D.B.A. Baker College (Michigan), 2012.
Specialization: Business; Management; Organization Theory.
Management communication requirements of U.S. companies during times of organizational change: A mixed-methods investigation
225 pages. UMI #: AAT 3518013
Bibliographic Record in ProQuest Dissertations & Theses Database
Research indicates that management communication has a direct effect on organizational change effectiveness and also that many change initiatives fail. Change theorists such as Lewin state that the best way to motivate employees to change is with information. However, there is little clarity on the communication needs at the different organizational levels. To help close that gap, this researcher investigated (a) current management communication effectiveness, (b) perceived management communication needs at the major organizational levels, (c) ways management could tailor communication to meet needs at the major organizational levels, and (d) the effects tailored management communications would have on change initiatives and employees. In this mixed-methods study, participants were purposely selected certified project management professionals (PMP) experienced in organizational change in the United States. Quantitative data were collected from 36 PMPs from several different industries via a questionnaire and analyzed using descriptive statistics and regression analysis. Qualitative data were collected from 6 PMP participants via one-on-one interviews and 5 functional managers. All interviews were analyzed using Nvivo 9. The study results showed that (a) the current change communications approaches were potentially ineffective, (b) the major levels of organizations have different communication needs, (c) tailoring management communication to the major organizational levels would improve the chances of change success, and (d) management communication is not being tailored to meet the needs at the major organizational levels. The research indicates that management needs to develop a comprehensive communication strategy that includes (a) understanding that there are different communication needs at the major levels of the organization, (b) taking steps to comprehensively define these different needs and tailor different messages to meet them, (c) engaging employees to actively participate in planning, developing, and deploying these different communication messages at every level, (d) anticipating questions and concerns encountered at the different organizational levels and preparing communication packages to address these questions when encountered, and (e) establishing a communication schedule with well-defined feedback points and adjusting the messages to ensure employee concerns are being addressed.