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Organizational Communication Week 3

by: Mariah Tucker

Organizational Communication Week 3 COMM 6120-01

Marketplace > Southern Utah University > Communication > COMM 6120-01 > Organizational Communication Week 3
Mariah Tucker
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About this Document

These notes cover systems theory, and the way that different systems work together within society.
Organizational Communication
Dr. Arthur Challis
Class Notes
communication, Organizational sciences, Systems
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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Mariah Tucker on Saturday September 24, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to COMM 6120-01 at Southern Utah University taught by Dr. Arthur Challis in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 4 views. For similar materials see Organizational Communication in Communication at Southern Utah University.

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Date Created: 09/24/16
COMM 6120 Organizational Communication Week 3 Notes Systems Theories Systems theories evolved from the thoughts of Maslow and McGreggor. They focused on human relations, and how communication affects human relations. Communication is shared meaning between two or more people. It can be a one on one experience, or a speaker to an audience experience. Systems theories evolved from the way that people worked. People used to earn their pay by doing 100% of the tasks they were asked to complete for the day, and if they didn’t meet that, their pay would be cut. It isn’t necessarily the way things work today. People are still expected to earn their pay, but it isn’t that cut and dry today. People’s pay usually won’t be affected by the things they don’t necessarily complete during the day. People typically participate more to what is going on, when they know they are being watched, or they know that someone is paying attention to them. There was an experiment done in the 1950’s that indicated that there needs to be a certain amount of respect between employees in order for them to feel like their time and effort is worth investing in the company. Organizational communication serves as a way for businesses to discuss disputes, and solve problems that arise within the organization. If a business can maintain open communication between employees, they have the potential to be successful. A paper by Redding and Bednar examined the ways that different management styles at Walmart influenced employee motivation. The researchers looked at the different managerial responsibilities that determine effectiveness in different Walmart stores, to see if there was a specific style or system that would be beneficial for other stores or teams to follow for effective management. The classical theories used in this research were built on the traditional theories, and expanded what was learned from previous research. The systems theory is focused on finding out the best way for different parts of a system or a company to work together. In the traditional theory there are two major study types that contribute to the different research done. The Interpretive Approach is the symbolic study of structure. It tends to rely a lot on symbolism in society. The Critical Approach focuses on looking for the different fallacies in the article or artifact being studied. Art used President Wyatt’s Day in the Parks initiative to illustrate the different parts of a system working together. The event was planned by all of the departments on campus, the National Parks Foundation, local businesses, and community members. Each detail had to work the way it was supposed to, or the trip might not have actually happened. He talked about the way that organizations can dramatically change between business owners or supervisors. He talked about sports coaches for schools specifically. Sports coaches essentially have the same job description wherever they go, but each coach has a different method of training and teaching athletes, and sometimes the organization has to make some new changes in order to accommodate the different methods for management. Systems and organizations can’t stay the same, because the world is constantly changing and evolving. Douglas McGregor believed that there were two different types of people in the work field, and he created a classification system for the individuals. “X” individuals hated working, and saw it as a chore and burden. They would be the people that would only be at work when they had to be, and wouldn’t be anywhere near the office or factory when they didn’t have to be. These were the people that viewed work as simply a way of getting a paycheck, and nothing more. They saw no other value to working than earning an income. “Y” individuals are the exact opposite according to McGregor. “Y” workers thoroughly enjoyed working, and gladly completed the tasks they were given. Art said “Y” individuals are better suited for jobs in sales, because working in sales isn’t easy. It requires a person who is particularly motivated, and monetary compensation doesn’t do a lot to make the job more desirable. Sales is a lot of knocking on doors and a lot of rejection, so Art said that it would be particularly hard for an “X” individual, because it isn’t a desk job where they do the same thing day in and day out. According to our discussion “X” individuals would be more suited for factory or desk jobs, where they would essentially do the same thing day in and day out. We talked about how we don’t see it as clearly defined, because sometimes we are motivated to work, and other days we don’t necessarily want to be at work, so it drags on forever. For any type of industry or worker, it is important to understand what they are particularly motivated by. Some people are motivated by money; others are motivated by promotions and awards, while others could be motivated by praise. It depends on the person, but it is important for an organization to understand what the best motivation tools are for each employee, so they can use the best method for the individual. If people are adequately motivated, then the work quality will improve. Systems theory focuses on the way things work. Everything is a system. A system is a whole made of separate parts. We talked about the body as a system. For a body to actually function, the heart needs to beat, the lungs need to exchange oxygen and CO2, and the brain needs to be functioning, so all of the limbs and organs are working properly. All of the pieces of the system are important in maintaining the overall function. If one of the pieces is missing or not working properly, the entire system becomes impaired. Systems can function as open or closed depending on their overall purpose and goals. An open system interacts with the local community and environment. For instance a grocery store would be an open system, because people can go in and out and get what they need, and manufacturers can place their products on the shelves of that store to get them sold to consumers. Closed systems are the opposite. In a closed system there is very little interaction with outside companies or individuals if there is any interaction. A closed system would be an organization such as the Federal Bureau of Investigations or the President’s Cabinet. The organizations may have an influence on society, but they don’t generally do a lot with individuals outside the organization. In society there are different subsystems that exist in every system. For instance SUU would count as the main system, but all of the colleges, departments, offices, clubs, and organizations would each count as a subsystem of SUU. They are still part of the system, but they each have a slightly different purpose in being a part of the university as a whole. In systems and subsystems they either maintain synergy or are entropic. Synergy is order within the system, and entropy is a lack of predictability. Each organization can encounter either of these stages, based on the way the world changes. Organizations need to be able to adapt to changes in society in order to actually be successful. Many organizations and systems maintain interdependence, and rely on other organizations to work properly. A grocery store relies on producers to bring produce to sell at the store, or they don’t have any for their customers to purchase. It works the same way with any of their products. It is a very open system that depends on others to provide what they need to keep their doors open.


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