Purpose – To investigate the effectiveness of internal communication during a crisis by comparing how Italian companies communicated to employees during the 2008-2009 global financial crisis and how employees interpreted these efforts. Design/methodology – The study used interviews with internal communication managers and employees. It also drew data from two focus groups and a survey involving internal communicators. Findings – The results indicate a misalignment between what companies meant to communicate and what employees perceived. Companies planned excellent communication, made extensive use of official instruments and depicted the crisis as an opportunity, while employees complained about the lack of listening and about the clarity of messages, disliked hierarchical communication, and accused their companies of opportunism. Research implications – Further research is needed to explore the antecedents of the effective manager-employee sensemaking process during a crisis. Practical implications –To reduce misalignment companies should strengthen trust relationships before a crisis occurs and should focus on open and continuous listening during a crisis. Originality/value – The two perspectives of managers and employees used simultaneously offer a more comprehensive understanding of the complexity of internal communication during crises.

Manager-employee communication during a crisis: the missing link, 2011.

Manager-employee communication during a crisis: the missing link

Mazzei, Alessandra;Ravazzani, Silvia
2011

Abstract

Purpose – To investigate the effectiveness of internal communication during a crisis by comparing how Italian companies communicated to employees during the 2008-2009 global financial crisis and how employees interpreted these efforts. Design/methodology – The study used interviews with internal communication managers and employees. It also drew data from two focus groups and a survey involving internal communicators. Findings – The results indicate a misalignment between what companies meant to communicate and what employees perceived. Companies planned excellent communication, made extensive use of official instruments and depicted the crisis as an opportunity, while employees complained about the lack of listening and about the clarity of messages, disliked hierarchical communication, and accused their companies of opportunism. Research implications – Further research is needed to explore the antecedents of the effective manager-employee sensemaking process during a crisis. Practical implications –To reduce misalignment companies should strengthen trust relationships before a crisis occurs and should focus on open and continuous listening during a crisis. Originality/value – The two perspectives of managers and employees used simultaneously offer a more comprehensive understanding of the complexity of internal communication during crises.
Inglese
Emerald Group Publishing Ltd
16
3
243
254
12
United Kingdom
internazionale
esperti anonimi
A stampa
Settore SECS-P/08 - Economia E Gestione Delle Imprese
Highly Commended Award Winner at the Literati Network Awards for Excellence 2012
2
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/10808/3830
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