I recently left a company that identified a need to improve organizational communications. You could say that communicating the need to communicate better was the intended agenda. A survey was sent to all employees to gather feedback and prioritize the necessary activities to generate improvement. However, in keeping with the original problem, their approach to communicating with employees was vastly deficient.
Memos were emailed to all employees,, ensuring the leadership team took their survey feedback seriously. Promises to develop better communication plans were made. However, senior leaders berated front-line managers in management meetings and demanded they better communicate with employees. No desired vision was shared, the company’s definition of “communication” was ambiguous, no communication training was provided, no guidelines were established regarding topics they felt should be communicated, and no tracking mechanisms were developed to gauge the level of improvement.
Not long before I left, a senior management team member left the organization. Rather than ensuring widespread and consistent communication regarding his departure, the company chose not to address the issue. Rather, employees were left to speculate whether the termination was voluntary or forced. Without communication, employees began creating versions of the truth – and rumors spread like wildfire.
In complete contrast with what had been promised, the company withheld information from its employees. This undermined the entire communication effort and resulted in a lack of trust in the organization and its communications (Vaughn, 2012).
Vaughn, D. (2012). The top five reasons communications fail. TMCnet.com. Retrieved from http://www.tmcnet.com/topics/articles/253113-top-five-reasons- communications-fail.htm
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Reflect on the communication failures you have witnessed in organizational change efforts, and answer the following:
- What was communication failure?
- What communication needs were not met?
- What was the result of these failures in communication?
- What needed to be done to correct this problem?
Submission, APA, 1 1/2 paragraphs
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