Communicating Change - Changing Communication? Towards a Model of Communication in Planned Organizational Change

21 Pages Posted: 5 Mar 2009

See all articles by Tim Wray

Tim Wray

Irish Management Institute

Martin R. Fellenz

Trinity College Dublin - School of Business

Date Written: September 3, 2007

Abstract

Communication and organisational change are inextricably linked. This paper reviews the role of formal and informal communication in organisational change and identifies and discusses the central processes of sense-giving and individual and social sense-making. It presents an initial model that posits that individual views of change are influenced by three key inputs: formal management communication, intra-personal information processing, and inter-personal processing of information through social interactions utilising informal networks and channels of communication. The pragmatic implication of our model is that the communication strategies in support of planned change employed by most organisations are flawed because they take an incomplete view of the communication tasks. For change communication to deliver and control the received message a much more sophisticated understanding of the role of informal communication and of individual and social sensemaking processes is required.

Keywords: communication, change, change management, sensemaking, informal networks

Suggested Citation

Wray, Tim and Fellenz, Martin R., Communicating Change - Changing Communication? Towards a Model of Communication in Planned Organizational Change (September 3, 2007). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1353950 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1353950

Tim Wray

Irish Management Institute ( email )

Sandyford Road
Dublin, 16
Ireland

HOME PAGE: http://www.imi.ie

Martin R. Fellenz (Contact Author)

Trinity College Dublin - School of Business ( email )

College Green
Dublin 2
Ireland

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