Organizational Communication

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last updated 10/25/2016

Everyday Interactions as Forms of Performance Control (in HR and Culturally Managed Organizations)

A.  One on One Influence Strategies - How do you control organization member performance?  (Descriptive list in order of frequency of use)

  1. Reasoning - presenting a logical argument for compliance (usual first choice in most organizations)
  2. Assertiveness - asking for compliance firmly
  3. Bargaining - offering something in return for compliance
  4. Coalition - seeking support from others as backing
  5. Friendliness -
  6. Calling on or making reference to higher authority
  7. Sanctions - punishment or threats

B.  Goal Setting - Goals can control performance whether set jointly or unilaterally.  They channel behavior and thinking.

  1. Goal specificity - Greater specificity yields greater effectiveness of performance
  2. Goal difficulty - Realistic, achievable but challenging goals work best.
  3. Mutual participation in goal setting tends to produce more challenging goals

C.  Feedback - In "systems theory" terms,  feedback consists of messages that control the system and keep it stable. Usually the messages are assumed to come from supervisor but that isn't always the reality of the workplace.

  • positive feedback - messages that tell the system (employee) to keep doing what it's doing
  • negative feedback - messages that tell the system (employee) to change what it's doing
  • Feedback is most effective if it is --
    • rapid - occuring quickly after behavior occurs
    • frequent - daily or weekly is better by far than quarterly or annual reviews
    • specific - feedback messages deal with very specfic behaviors/actions/oputcome

Feedback Characteristics that Influence Its Effectiveness in Controlling Performance

  1. Valance - positive or negative
  2. specificity - level of detail, how behavioral
  3. timeliness - proximity to the performance the feedback references
  4. frequency - how often is feedback delivered
  5. sensitivity - to what degree are the feelings of the receiver considered in the message