last updated 11/14/2003
EFFECTIVE MESSAGES IN ORGANIZATIONS
Listening to messages
1. Messages have meanings at 3 levels
1. cognitive (content) - literal
2. Messages have implications at 2 levels
(1) the functional quality of the message
(3) command, ritual?
(2) the negotiation of organizational roles
2. Personal - how does it appear to impact the person.
(1) psychologically (motivation, esteem, etc.)
Constructing Effective Messages
1. Consider the implications of the above and adapt message to them
2. Give good reasons
1. Universal good reasons - fairness, equality, consistency, strength, moral (in context) -- also lesser reasons: science shows, others are doing it
2. Topoi - the "good reasons" of your org.
3. Types of Messages Used in Defending a Damaged Personal Image
1. denial - not my fault
2. bolstering - error is part of a virtue
3. differentiation - split issue into parts and focus on the good part (e.g. "but in the long run we'll be better off.")
4. transcendence - making the issue a broader one