Organizational Communication Assignment

  1. Traditional, interpretive, critical, postmodernism, feminist approach to organizational communication


The traditional approach to communication involves the sharing of information between parties in the organization. It involves informing others what is expected of them as well as the means that they are to follow in order to meet such expectations. This is unlike the critical approach which revolves around control and power. Different people who are involved in the communication hold different levels of control in the organization. As a result under the critical perspective, suspicion is common (Baxter, 2011, p89). This is unlike in the traditional communication approach where information is shared in a uniform manner.  It also differs from postmodernism as it does not involve questioning of what is known. Under postmodernism, the ideas held by others are not just shared. Rather, they are bound to be altered based on emerging ideas and knowledge. The communication in the organization often tends to hinder the portrayal of their actual status as they are masked by the world view (Baxter, & Asbury, 2015, p88). Unlike the traditional approach to communication is mainly on the current functionality of an organization, postmodernism involves the bringing in of emerging information in decision making. It also involved the evaluation of alternatives where no single view is held to be the only right view across time.

Unlike the above approaches to communication which are indifferent to gender, feminism approach to communication emphasizes the need for voice. It is based on the view that over the years, organizations have been insensitive to the gender-based sound. In an organization, a critical perspective on communication emphasizes the effect of the power of the involved parties on the outcome of the discussion.  Such power does not recognize differences in gender. The feminist theory thus goes a step forward by indicating the need for gender-based empowerment in communication. For instance, in the hotel industry, the voice of ladies may not always be paid attention to as that of the males who often take the most senior positions. To bridge this gap, it is thus important for the organization to equally assign positions of power and leadership to females so that their voice is heard.

The feminist approach differs significantly from the traditional approach. For instance, the traditional perspective holds that organization culture is to be adopted at the discretion of the top management. The communication is to occur from the top management to the junior employees and hence not questionable.


Feminist and postmodernism perspectives create room for questioning communication from various quarters in an organization. While the management may pass information that seems to be insensitive to a particular gender, it is evident that people of the gender that feels threatened by such communication is ignored may end up seeking clarification on what is communicated (Braithwaite, Moore, & Abetz, 2014, p56). The interpretive perspective equally has similarities with postmodernism in that unlike in the traditional approach where communication is shaped by the top management, under the interpretive approach, it is usually shaped by the other employees within the organization. Just like the traditional approach, all of the above-discussed perspectives are used in explaining organizational communication



  1. Power and conflict

Power and conflict intertwine in organizations in various ways. For instance, there may exist different goals between the organization and the employees. While the primary purpose of the organization is to maximize wealth, employees’ goal is to maximize their earnings. For instance, in the hotel and hospitality industry, consumers may visit the organization during the day and night. To maximize earnings, the organization may push employees to work extra hours. The conflict would occur if the extra hours worked are not paid for so that the goals of the organization are harmonized with those of the employees. Equally, ethics may be a cause of conflict if not well applied (Chevrette, 2013, p88). The most popular group in the organization is likely to exert their beliefs on others. Scholars like Mayo indicate that conflict has no role in an organization since collaboration is expected to yield more gains to the organization as compared to conflict. Goal incompatibility is thus a key bridge between power and conflict. Task interdependence may also result in conflict in an organization. Different people in an organization has control of specific resources. As a result, when a party that has the power to restrict such resources against their colleagues, this may result in the destruction of the interdependence between them resulting in conflict (Atay, & D’Silva, 2019, p56). Shared resources may also be a source of conflict when the more powerful party limits access in the organization for instance, in the hotel industry, employees may have to share vehicles when moving one location to another. Those in power may have more control over the authorization of individuals to use a car for official purpose something that would result in conflict.

In organizations where the hierarchical, bureaucratic approach to leadership is common, there is a tendency to have the power concentrated on a few individuals. As a result, their discretionary decision making due to their positions may result in conflict within the organization. In the hotel industry, there is often a conflict between the people who will serve specific clients. Equally, when there are workshop trips, it may be designed for only a section of employees. The most powerful in the organization is likely to book themselves for such trips and workshops leaving out the less powerful individuals in the organization (Guerrero, Andersen, & Afifi, 2011, p101).

There are two key ways that the organizations in the hotel industry may employ in managing conflict. For instance, by harmonizing organization goals with the goals of the employees, instances of conflicts in the organization will decline. For instance, when the organizations in the hotel industry increase the working hours to serve customers who come late, with the aim of increasing profits, they should also introduce overtime payment to employees. This would ensure that in the pursuit of the organization goals, the employee goals are also being attained (Allen, 2017, p89).

Another measure that may be used in addressing conflict is power distribution. For instance, while one of the people in the hotel may be the head of the service, the other may be the head of marketing and other examples. This would ensure that no single person that holds all the power at the functional level of the organization.

  1. Language

Language is not the only way that people communicate. Rather, it shapes the way in which people experience the world. Communication is broad-based. For instance, the use of gestures is a crucial approach to communication in an organization. Body language significantly influences how people experience people from different cultures. For instance, in the hotel industry, customers come from different social, cultural backgrounds (Moore, 2017). As a result, while the language may be used in exchanging information, the use of body language assists in experiencing other cultures. Poor interpretation of body language may result in miscommunication. Language not only influences understanding of communication but also significantly affects thought.

Language is not tied to a particular location. It is employed even with people from other cultures. Language not only influences the understanding of what people from other cultures are saying but also affects the understanding of their culture. Language thus goes beyond the passing of information but is also a way of experiencing other people’s beliefs and cultures.

In communication, multiple factors influence the passage of information besides the language used. For instance, the cultural background of individuals affects how people interpret communication. It is easy to understand where people come from depending on their clothing and the food they take when they visit restaurants. Such information may not have to be passed by language but through mere observation of such individuals (Mumby, 2013, p65). Communication is thus a large element that goes beyond the individual language used by people but many other multiple factors associated with them. Nevertheless, language equally increases understanding and minimizes the chance of misinterpretation.

Communication does not serve merely as a way of information transmission. It shapes the experiences that people go through.  It equally shapes our sense of reality. Interpretive discourse assists in a better understanding of the world. It assists in communicating social reality. Communication should not be viewed mainly as something that occurs in an organization. Rather, it should be viewed as an element that creates an organization. The organization should be viewed as cultures that are created by communication (Brewer, & Westerman, 2018, p99). Communication is thus not only used in shaping organizations but is also used in exposing social reality among people. How people use language provides understanding in their perspectives and who they actually are. For instance, in the hotel industry, a discussion between an employee and a senior manager may indicate how each of these people use figurative language based on their perceptions on the issues under discussion. Communication is influenced not only by the information shared in the communication process as well as the actors involved (Tracy, 2012, p45). Language is thus an important element which may be used differently by individuals to arrive at different interpretations even if the words used are the same. Under the postmodernism approach, people not only listen to what others are saying, but they also interpret the same to derive specific meanings. Language thus assists in the understanding of other people, their perspectives and their cultures. Language presents narratives regarding the world. In postmodernism, the truth is constructed by multiple narratives.














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