Organizational Communication Exam 369 cards

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Those ongoing behavioral and cognitive processes by which individuals join, become integrated with, and exit organizations



Due to changes within the organization, the assimilation process can take place over the entire time a person spends in the organization



Conforming to role expectations and organizational norms (Most research on socialization)



Adapting organizational procedures to one's own preferences


Phases of Socialization

Anticipatory Encounter Metamorphosis


Anticipatory Socialization

Child develops knowledge and beliefs about work Later, develops knowledge and beliefs about a vocation or profession Later, develops knowledge and beliefs about an organization


Encounter Phase of Socialization

Adjusting knowledge and beliefs to reality of an organization Orientation Mentoring


Metamorphosis (Socialization)

No longer an "outsider" an "insider"


What is required for socialization?

Role-related information Organizational culture information


Communication Process in Assimilation- Employment interview

(RJB) Realistic Job Preview Upside: If warned of potential negatives, new employee (member) less likely to leave early Downside: Less capable employee may see potential negative as a challenge and not self-select out of the job


Newcomer Info Seeking

Choice depends on need to know versus the perceived cost of not knowing


Role Development (Individualization)

Organization members accomplish their work through roles. Supervisor: subordinate relationship is central Role-taking: supervisor assigns Role-making: subordinate negotiates alterations Role-routinization: expectations of performance understood and entrenched- especially important in high trust work groups.


Communication and Exits (Not much Research)

Exit is a process- anticipation, maybe negotiation, finalization Negative feedback may precipitate it Impacts those left behind- positively or negatively Involuntarily exits impact leavers' families Departure may be variously characterized


Personality trait- Willingness to communicate

An individual's predisposition to initiate communication with others. May involve themselves more in tasks involving interpersonal and team interaction Unwilling may be less satisfied and leave (cause and effect?) Necessary but not sufficient trait for managers.


Personality trait- Shyness

Refers to the actual behavior of not communicating. Often perceived as a negative reaction to us personally. Doesn't do well in interviews, team, interactions with co-workers and clients. Not likely to move up in the organization


Personality trait- Communication Apprehension

Level of fear or anxiety associated with either real or anticipated communication with another person or persons. Disability- avoidance, withdrawal, dysfunction Likely unwilling to communicate may be less satisfied with work


Personality trait- Self-Perceived Communication Competence

An individual's report of his/her own competence in communicating across a variety of contexts. Affects decisions about whether or how to communicate. Perceptions of self may not be shared by others. Capable people with low self-esteem may avoid communicating when they should.


Personality trait- Compulsive Communicators

An overwhelming desire to communicate. Positively evaluated on leadership ability, competence, liking, honesty, caring for others, task attractiveness, and social attractiveness. Generally do well in organizations.


Personality trait- Argumentativeness and Tolerance for Disagreement

Statement of a position...and support for that position, including why alternate positions are incorrect. High argumentativeness people are influential in the organization High argumentativeness have less interpersonal conflict


Personality trait- Verbal Aggression

Attacking the self confidence, character and/or intelligence of another person, instead of, or in addition to, their position on an issue. Generates conflict Bad trait for a supervisor- leads to low morale among subordinates


Sociocommunicative orientation- Assertiveness

Stand up for themselves, do not let others take advantage of them...without taking advantage of others. Initiate, maintain, and terminate communication in accordance with their own goals. More nonverbally active Fair minded, probably good at most roles in the organization


Sociocommunicative orientation- Responsive

Other-oriented, sensitive to needs, feelings, and communication of others. Not submissive Good trait for teams and group work, probably a helpful co-worker or supervisor


Sociocommunicative orientation- Versatility/Adaptability

Ability to adapt one's communication to the context, situation, and other person(s) involved in a communication event. Communication competence Helpful trait for any organizational leadership role.


Organization Orientation- Upward Mobile

Strong identification with organization or profession Thrives on work, decision-making, power, and rewards. Expects others to share values Probably demanding supervisor If identification is with a profession, may leave one organization to advance career


Organization Orientation- Indifferent

Simply not interested in the job in the it for the paycheck (not interested probably a bit overstated.) Avoid participating in organizational routines Unlikely to do extra work without compensation Unlikely to be placed high in the hierarchy but important to the organization- will do grunt work


Organization Orientation- Ambivalent

Never truly comfortable in any organization May not stay in any one organization for more than a few years Reject the authority structure Moody, difficult to work with or for, disgruntled Probably not likely to advance (cause & effect?)


Personality Types

Personality can be defined as the sum of an individual's characteristics that make him or her unique. Some types have a distinctive impact on people in organizations.



The sum of an individual's characteristics that make him or her unique.


Personality type- Authoritarian

Predictable. Structured and rule-oriented, obedient. Want respect and obedience in their authority. As supervisor, may be useful if discipline is needed. Often becomes the favorite of a supervisor.


Personality type- Machiavellianism

Willing to manipulate others, enjoys manipulating others, and is good at it. Not necessarily evil or manipulation wrong Will get what they want, get people to do things for them, generally well-liked, generally do well in the organization Inept manipulation is probably somehow punished


Personality type- High Achiever

Money not the main motivator. Work because they want to achieve goals for themselves. Workshores in most organizations. Might take on more than they are capable of. Probably a demanding supervisor.


Personality type- Dogmatism

Have a narrow view of issues and expect others to see their point of view. Communication with highly dogmatic individuals is not easy. Probably not much social interaction with those who hold different opinions. Probably "my way or the highway" on work issues= demanding supervisor or resentful subordinate if ordered co


Personality type- Self-Esteem

Constant feelings of inadequacy. Worry they might get promoted; they know they could not achieve at a higher level. Praise will be met with rejection. Criticism is likely to prompt a highly defensive reaction. Seldom are promoted to supervisor positions.


Perception of people

A process of taking something into account about a person or people and assigning meaning to it (making a judgment).


Perceptions of people- What do we take into account?

Physical appearance. Behavior of the other(s)


Perceptions of people- What "warrants" our judgments?

Experience. What we are told. (Both lead to expectations)


Perceptions of people- What kind of judgments do we make?

Credibility-absolute or relative Interpersonal attractiveness- Physical, social, or task Similarity (homophility)- objective or perceived


Perceptions of People- What mistakes might we make?

Attribution error. Stereotyping


Diversity- A continuing issue of numbers

2050 estimated population composition 24% Hispanic 18% African American 15% Asian Americans


Diversity- A continuing Issue of Emerging Categories

Physical impairments ("Disabled") LGBT Religion- e.g., Muslims Generations Mixed race


Diversity- A continuing issue

Stereotyping- Generalizing about a class Prejudice- Attitude toward individuals in the class Discrimination- Actions affecting one's organizational life


Diversity- Communication Issues

Fewer advancement opportunities Exclusion from informal networks Lack of appropriate mentors Tokenism


Diversity- Multi-Cultural Organization

Meets legally mandated requirements. Tangible support for diverse population Full integration Structurally Informally Universal identification with organization Destructive conflict minimized


Diverse Organization Opportunities

Cost savings- communication issues= turnover= recruiting, training costs Reputation Creativity and problem solving (Perhaps short-term struggle before long-term benefits)


Diverse Organizations Challenges

Reactions to mandates (Civil Rights Act, ADA, ENDA) Sexual harassment Balancing work and home (e.g., "Mommy Track")


Social Relationships at Work

Friends Friends with Benefits Romances


Social relations- Organization= Enabling Context

Lots of time spent in the organization Proximity to others


Social relations- The Good (Usually friend relationships)

Job enjoyment (Study) Social/emotional support Interpersonal needs Share work & non-work concerns Team work- less awkward "forming," friends welfare= motivation Morale- enjoy going to work, no friends= less satisfied Retention- Friends= job benefit, new organization= no friends= job deficit Productivity- some work


Social relations- The Bad (Applies to all forms of relationships)

Distractions from work Maybe policy restrictions (not is same dept., must notify HR, etc.) Policy restrictions= invasion of privacy Others' resentments Perceptions of favoritism Jealous "Left out" Conflicting loyalties- friends vs. organization Friend not performing well Friend somehow cheats or lies Friend becomes whi


Social relations- The Ugly

Bullying: repeated, hostile behaviors that occur in the workplace over an extended period and that are intended- or perceived as intended- to harm one or more parties who are unable to defend themselves. 30% of 400 respondents reported they had been bullied at work Forms: ridicule, rumors, false allegations, insults, t


Social relations- The Ugly (sexual harassment)

Unwanted sexual attention that interferes with an individual's ability to do his or her job and/or behavior that ties sexual favors to continued employment or success within the organization. Two forms: quid pro quo (sexual favor to gain success), hostile work environment (comments, pictures)


Social relations- The Ugly (Sexual Harassment 2)

Courts- "reasonable woman" standard (Would she conclude that it was harassment?) Vast majority don't respond by confronting or reporting Effect- decreased work performance, anxiety, depression, self-blame, anger, feelings of helplessness, fear of more harassment, fear of reporting



Suppression of disagreement A mode of thinking that persons engage in when concurrence-seeking becomes so dominant in a cohesive in-group that it tends to override realistic appraisal of alternative courses of action.


Groupthink symptoms

Illusion of invulnerability Rationalization Illusion of morality Stereotyping Peer pressure Self-censorship Illusion of unanimity Mind-guarding (keep dangerous ideas away)


Preventing Groupthink

Encourage disagreement Assign a "critical evaluator" or "devil's advocate" Seek outside opinion Vote secretly- silence not necessarily consent Use sub-groups Take sufficient time



About substance of an issue About procedure


Disagreement can be productive

Parties learn from each other Better responses or solutions New leaders or person with expertise may emerge But can lead to conflict- necessary but not sufficient



Disagreement plus dislike Can be destructive Can be managed- not resolved


Conflict may depend on tolerance for disagreement

Amount of disagreement one tolerates before perceiving conflict A personality trait Will vary with different "others"


Tolerance for disagreement

Low tolerance- a little disagreement or only a little dislike can lead to conflict High tolerance- take much disagreement or a lot of dislike to lead to conflict Of course, there's a middle ground


Organizational Conflict: What's the fuss about?

"Turf"- whose job/responsibility is it? Role or status- e.g., who gets the promotion? Resources- e.g., who gets the new equipment?


Dislike and Phases of Conflict

Latent- conditions favorable for conflict exist Perceived- awareness of an incompatibility Felt- anticipating the conflict, strategizing Manifest- enacted through interaction Aftermath- things aren't the same


Preventing conflicts: the organization's role

Clear role definitions Clear standards of advancement, reward Appropriate flexibility Workable dispute management procedures


Preventing conflict: the individual's role

Understanding the costs- Is it worth it? Increase tolerance for disagreement


Conflict management- Competitive Negotiation

Limited resources at issue Maximize gains- minimize losses Outcomes: either win-lose or compromise "Game playing"- strategizing, deception (A party may win or lose, but relationships may be damaged)


Conflict Management Collaboration

Resources not necessarily limited or fixed Maximize all parties' gains Outcome not necessarily dependent on concession- creative solution Open sharing of information and ideas (Optimal outcome but idealistic- may not be applicable or workable)


Conflict Management- Third Party Facilitation/ Decision

Could be any disinterested other Formal mediator Formal arbitrator