Applying Change, (Social) Network and PR Theories to Introduce Social Media-Based Internal Communication

15th International Public Relations Research Conference, March 2012

12 Pages Posted: 27 Feb 2012 Last revised: 31 Mar 2012

See all articles by Holger Sievert

Holger Sievert

Macromedia University of Applied Sciences; Technical University Munich; University of Florida - College of Journalism & Communication; University of Cambridge

Astrid Nelke

[know:bodies] gmbh; MHMK - University for Media and Communication, Berlin

Date Written: February 27, 2012

Abstract

Global, fast-moving societies also require organizations to provide increasingly flexible structures and thinking patterns. This not only applies to commercial corporations and companies, but also ministries, such as the German Federal Foreign Office (FFO).

Referring first to Change, Network and PR Theories (section 1), this paper presents results of a new study on internal communication done in 2010 within this ministry (section 2). This comprised a content analysis of the ministry's internal communications, an online employee survey distributed to 1500 employees, and some face-to-face interviews on particular issues.

The findings of the research show very clearly that leadership and communication are amongst the decisive indicators in the change process, and that building networks in these situations is a core success factors for modern internal PR.

They also indicate that the role of internal communication will shift its focus in the future from a top-down communication to real interaction less controlled by management, e.g. using social media.

The conclusion (section 3) shows that this is the only way in which internal communication will be quick and flexible enough to deal with rapidly changing environments.

Keywords: internal communication, PR, social media, change, government, ministry, Germany

JEL Classification: Z00

Suggested Citation

Sievert, Holger and Nelke, Astrid, Applying Change, (Social) Network and PR Theories to Introduce Social Media-Based Internal Communication (February 27, 2012). 15th International Public Relations Research Conference, March 2012 , Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2011953

Holger Sievert (Contact Author)

Macromedia University of Applied Sciences ( email )

Head of Research Commission
Brüderstr. 17
Cologne, 50667
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.macromedia-fachhochschule.de/en/people/holger-sievert/

Technical University Munich ( email )

Institute for Life Long Learning
Arcisstr. 21
Munich, 80333
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.lll.tum.de/de/about/executive-professional-education-board

University of Florida - College of Journalism & Communication ( email )

Internal Communications Research Hub
1885 Stadium Rd
Gainesville, FL 32611
United States

HOME PAGE: http://https://www.jou.ufl.edu/icrh-thought-leaders/

University of Cambridge ( email )

Churchill College
Storey's Way
Cambridge, CB3 0DS
United Kingdom

HOME PAGE: http://www.cam.ac.uk

Astrid Nelke

[know:bodies] gmbh ( email )

sophie-charlotten-str. 103
berlin, 14059
Germany
01777037412 (Phone)
0307032668 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.knowbodies.de

MHMK - University for Media and Communication, Berlin

M33 Höfe
Mehringdamm 33
Berlin, 10961
Germany

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