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Creating a positive emotional culture: Effect of internal communication and impact on employee supportive behaviors



The study surveyed 506 employees in the United States to test the effect of internal communication (i.e., corporate-level symmetrical and leadership-level responsive communications) on fostering a positive emotional culture characterized by companionate love, joy, pride, and gratitude. In addition, we tested the interplay between corporate internal communication and a positive emotional culture and its influence on supportive employee behaviors, specifically, organizational citizenship behavior (OCB) and employee advocacy. Results indicated that symmetrical communication and responsive leadership communication cultivated a positive emotional culture in organizations. Such culture also fostered employee OCB and advocacy. Moreover, corporate symmetrical communication directly and positively influenced employee OCB. Finally, this study found that employee OCB positively affected employee advocacy. The theoretical and practical implications of the findings for public relations scholars and practitioners were discussed.
Creating a Positive Emotional Culture: Effect of Internal Communication and Impact on
Employee Supportive Behaviors
Citation: Men, L. R., & Yue, A. C. (2019). Creating a positive emotional culture: Effects of strategic
internal communication and its impact on employee supportive behaviors. Public Relations Review,
45(3), 101764
The study surveyed 506 employees in the United States to test the effect of internal
communication (i.e., corporate-level symmetrical and leadership-level responsive
communications) on fostering a positive emotional culture characterized by companionate love,
joy, pride, and gratitude. In addition, we tested the interplay between corporate internal
communication and a positive emotional culture and its influence on supportive employee
behaviors, specifically, organizational citizenship behavior (OCB) and employee advocacy.
Results indicated that symmetrical communication and responsive leadership communication
cultivated a positive emotional culture in organizations. Such culture also fostered employee
OCB and advocacy. Moreover, corporate symmetrical communication directly and positively
influenced employee OCB. Finally, this study found that employee OCB positively affected
employee advocacy. The theoretical and practical implications of the findings for public relations
scholars and practitioners were discussed.
Keywords: emotional culture, internal communication, symmetrical communication,
leadership communication, responsive communication, employee supportive behaviors
Creating a Positive Emotional Culture: Effect of Internal Communication and Impact on
Employee Supportive Behaviors
Emotional culture, compared with cognitive culture, affects organizational behaviors in a
different way (Robinson, Watkins, & Harmon-Jones, 2013). Unlike cognitive culture, which
guides how organizational members think and behave, emotional culture sets the tone for how
organizational members feel. Despite the increasing recognition of the importance of how
employees feel and what emotions they experience within their respective organizations, limited
scholarly attention has been given to the emotional aspect of organizational culture. Specifically,
the current study examines a positive emotional culture, characterized by companionate love,
joy, pride, and gratitude, its antecedents, and its employee outcomes. Companionate love
comprises feelings of affection, caring, compassion, and tenderness for others (Barsade &
O’Neill, 2014). A joyous workplace makes employees smile and think creatively (Karl &
Peluchette, 2006). Pride arises when employees are immersed in a positive, encouraging work
environment and when they develop a sense of identification with their organization. In this
work, we also examine gratitude, which is generated when a positive outcome related to oneself
is attributed to the contributions of others (Michie, 2009).
The role of internal communication in shaping organizational culture has been widely
recognized by management communication and public relations scholars and practitioners (e.g.,
Men & Bowen, 2017; L. A. Grunig, J. E. Grunig, & Dozier, 2002; Sriramesh, 1996). To expand
the theoretical knowledge of internal communication and emotional culture, the primary purpose
of the present study is to investigate whether and how corporate symmetrical communication and
responsive leadership communication can induce a positive emotional culture. As the normative
model of how public relations should be practiced, symmetrical communication model advocates
a dialogue between organizations and stakeholders in search of mutually agreeable solutions.
Within the internal context, the symmetrical communication model emphasizes “trust,
credibility, openness, relationships, reciprocity, network symmetry, horizontal communication,
feedback, adequacy of information, employee-centered style, tolerance for disagreement, and
negotiation” (J. E. Grunig, 1992, p. 558). Responsive leadership communication is characterized
by leader responsiveness, empathy, friendliness, compassion, and listening, with a focus on the
relational aspect of leaders’ daily communication (Men, 2015).
This study also intends to demonstrate why and how a positive emotional culture matters
for organizational effectiveness. It then examines how internal communication and a positive
emotional culture interact with each other to influence employee supportive behaviors,
specifically, organizational citizenship behavior (OCB) and employee advocacy. OCB occurs
when employees go beyond the core job obligations and voluntarily act in such a way that
promotes the effective functioning of their organization (Organ, 1988). Employee advocacy, like
OCB, is considered as an extra-role behavior. While OCB primarily focuses on employees’
voluntary behaviors within their organization, employee advocacy refers to employees’ external
behaviors in support of their organization.
This study contributes to the literature by improving our theoretical understanding of the
role of emotional culture in the workplace. Moreover, the findings highlight the pivotal role of
internal communication in fostering a positive emotional culture within an organization. This
study provides significant practical implications for management communication and public
relations professionals with regards to the value of building a positive emotional culture and
finding ways to foster such a culture through internal communication efforts.
Literature Review
Few concepts in organizational theory have faced such diverse interpretations as
“organizational culture” (Barney, 1986). Barney referred to organizational culture as “a complex
set of values, beliefs, assumptions, and symbols that define the way in which a firm conducts its
business” (1986, p. 657). Similarly, Sriramesh, J. E. Grunig, and Buffington (1992, p. 21) argued
that organizational culture provides “a broad base of worldview… that affects all decisions in the
organization.” From the perspective of organizational internal publics, public relations scholars
(e.g., Sriramesh, J. E. Grunig, & Dozier, 1996; Men & Bowen, 2017) have pointed out that
communication among employees often indicates the type of culture present in their
organization. Therefore, employees are the “best sources of information” to better understand
organizational culture (Sriramesh et al., 1996, p. 243). Although the concept of “culture” has
been defined from various perspectives, past studies almost exclusively conceptualized culture
from the perspective of cognition, emphasizing its role in shaping how organizational members
should think and behave within the workplace (Barsade & O’Neill, 2016).
Conceptualizing Emotional Culture
Despite the notion that “emotions are an integral and inseparable part of everyday
organizational life” (Ashforth & Humphrey, 1995, p. 98), organizational leaders do not manage
emotional culture as much as cognitive culture (Barsade & O’Neill, 2016). According to Barsade
and Knight (2015), emotional culture includes “behavioral norms, artifacts, and underlying
values and assumptions reflecting the actual expression or suppression of the discrete emotions
comprising the culture and the degree of perceived appropriateness of these emotions,
transmitted through feeling and normative mechanisms within a social unit” (p. 24). These
norms, artifacts, values, and assumptions are not only descriptive in depicting the actual
emotional culture being expressed in organizations, they are also prescriptive in reflecting
espoused values that may not capture the organizational reality. This conceptualization also
reflects two mechanisms through which employees perceive and enact emotions: “feeling
mechanisms” and “normative enactments.” In feeling mechanisms, employees genuinely
experience positive emotions at work. They also generate positive emotions through emotion
contagion, a subconscious process in which they first feel coworkers’ positive emotions and then
internalize these emotions as their own (Hatfield, Cacioppo, & Rapson, 1993). In normative
enactments, employees engage in norm compliance even though they do not really feel the same
emotions (Levy, 1973). Normative enactment is viewed as strategic acting to match group
expectations (Parkinson, 2005). Eventually, employees who start out enacting positive emotions
are likely to feel those emotions.
This study focuses on examining positive as opposed to negative emotions as
manifestations of a positive emotional culture. Drawing from the literature, the four positive
emotions of our interest are companionate love, joy, pride, and gratitude. Companionate love,
despite being a fundamental human emotion, has rarely been examined in the organizational or
communication literature. Employees experiencing a culture of companionate love show
sensitivity to others and develop an interdependent relationship with other organizational
members (Gonzaga et al., 2001). The second discrete emotion of investigation, joy, is an
important indicator of superior organizational performance (Joyce, 2003). A joyous culture
elicits effective team performance (Rhee, 2006), appeals to top talents, and creates a competitive
advantage for organizations in this regard (Barsade and O’Neill, 2016). An emotional culture of
joviality and of companionate love supplement each other in decreasing employee risk-taking
behaviors (O’Neill & Rothbard, 2014).
In the organizational setting, employees’ sense of pride arises from experiencing group
cohesion and team success (Swanson & Kent, 2016). Following Swanson and Kent’s (2016)
definition, we define an emotional culture of pride as characterized by employees’ feelings of
importance, value, and admiration of their job and organization. Workplace pride is an
organization’s strategic asset, which links to positive employee behaviors and business success
(Katzenbach, 2003). Finally, we examine the emotional culture of gratitude, which indicates the
appreciative atmosphere perceived by all organizational members. McCullough, Kilpatrick,
Emmons, and Larson (2001) found that people who feel grateful not only engage in prosocial
behaviors toward their own benefactors but also toward others. Gratitude is often expressed
through explicit words and actions, and as such, it can be highly contagious among employees.
Internal Communication
Internal communication is about “managing interdependence and building mutually
beneficial relationships between the organization and its employees” (Men & Bowen, 2017, p.
12). It is through internal communication that organizational leaders shape and transmit values
and missions of the organization to employees and therefore involve employees in fulfilling
bigger organizational purpose (Mayfield & Mayfield, 2018; Welch, 2011). Public relations
literature on internal communication has been lacking but the topic is on the rise in recent years
(Tkalac Verčič, Verčič, & Sriramesh, 2012; Welch, 2012). The internal communication system
mainly comprises three components: corporate internal, leadership, and peer (horizontal)
communication (Men & Bowen, 2017). Corporate internal communication is often initiated from
the communication department. Communication departments “provide control over message
timing and wording” and reach employees through mass communication channels, such as the
intranet, e-mail, social media, and newsletter (Men & Bowen, 2017, p. 3). Meanwhile, leadership
communication exerts a key influence on employees. On the one hand, the senior leadership sets
the tone for internal communication and shapes an organization’s reputation. On the other hand,
the supervisory leadership is viewed as the most trustworthy source of accurate, timely, useful,
and job-related information (Allen, Jimmieson, Bordia, & Irmer, 2007; Larkin & Larkin, 1994).
Corporate communication and leadership communication play different roles in
influencing organizational and employee outcomes. Recognizing such a difference, we decided
to explore how corporate-level symmetrical communication and leadership-level responsive
communication (supervisory level), two excellence features of the internal communication
system, contribute to the development of a positive emotional culture in organizations.
Corporate Symmetrical Communication
J. E. Grunig and Hunt (1984) first defined the four models of public relations that
encapsulate the typical ways by which it is practiced. The two-way symmetrical model has been
suggested as the most effective model for achieving organizational excellence (L. A. Grunig, J.
E. Grunig, & Dozier, 2002). The basic premise of symmetrical communication is how
organizations, individuals, and the public use communication to adjust their thinking and
behavior in order to create mutually beneficial relationships instead of seeking to control or
manipulate other parties. Symmetrical communication emphasizes understanding, collaboration,
responsiveness, and a balance of power and interest (L. A. Grunig et al., 2002). It should be
noted that Murphy (1991) proposed a mixed-motive model which claims that organizations and
their publics communicate and act on a continuum from pure advocacy to pure accommodation.
L. A. Grunig et al. (2002) acknowledged Murphy’s view and further clarified the role of two-
way symmetrical model as a way of “reconciling the organization’s and the publics’ interests”
instead of advocating “total accommodation of a public’s interest” (p. 309). From an internal
communication perspective, many empirical studies have shown the positive role of symmetrical
communication in fostering quality employee–organization relationships (Jo & Shim, 2005;
Kang & Sung, 2016; Men, 2014a), employee engagement (Kang & Sung, 2016; Lockwood,
2007), and positive employee communication behaviors (Kang & Sung, 2016; Kim & Rhee,
Internal communication and organizational culture have a reciprocal relationship (Berger,
2008; Sriramesh et al., 1996). On the one hand, culture influences internal communication by
providing a prevailing worldview and context, thereby influencing verbal and nonverbal
languages used in daily communication, as well as the values and meanings embedded in
decision making (Sriramesh et al., 1996). On the other hand, scholars proposed to examine
organizational culture from a communication perspective (Bormann, 1985; Pacanowsky &
Trujillo, 1983). This line of thinking contends that internal communication plays an active role in
shaping and changing organizational culture—a notion that corresponds with the purpose of the
present study. For example, Sriramesh articulated that “changing the communication systems of
an organization may be one of the ways of changing the culture” (1996, p. 238). Similarly,
Kennedy (1983) referred to effective communication on how to build a strong corporate culture.
Thus, communication practitioners, upon sensing the need for change in organizational culture,
should grasp the strategic opportunity to propose a new communication model. Moreover,
Sriramesh et al. (1996) argued that symmetrical communication fosters a participative
organizational culture, wherein employees carry strong organizational missions and managers
demonstrate sincere care for employees as well as value equity and consensus. These scholars
noted that symmetrical internal communication can be the starting point for communication
professionals to affect organizational culture.
To date, the literature has largely ignored the role of communication in fostering a
positive emotional culture, which is a unique facet of organizational culture. Nevertheless, the
key characteristics of symmetrical internal communication, as reviewed above, indicate that
organizational members working in an open communication environment characterized by trust,
symmetry, and reciprocity are likely to experience an overall positive emotional culture. In other
words, employees are happy knowing their voice and opinions are being valued in their
organization. Sincere and open communication also creates a warm atmosphere and thus keeps
employees connected to a companionate culture of love. In addition, organizations’ willingness
to share power with employees in decision-making can lead to employee gratitude. The trust and
care employees perceive from a reciprocal dialogue with organizations are likely to foster
employee pride for being part of a cohesive and caring group. Therefore, we argue that the
practice of symmetrical internal communication can engender a positive emotional culture
featured by companionate love, joy, pride, and gratitude.
H1: Corporate symmetrical communication positively influences a positive emotional
Responsive Leadership Communication
Leadership communication is implicit in leadership behavior and thus has not been
sufficiently emphasized in communication or management literature (Mayfield & Mayfield,
2018). Nevertheless, leaders’ talk supposedly takes up to 80% of leaders’ time, and most of the
talk involves subordinates (Van quaquebeke & Felps, 2018). This study decided to apply the
framework of socio-communicative style developed in instructional context to examine leaders’
responsive communication style and its influence on organizational- and employee-level
outcomes. First proposed by Richmond and McCroskey in 1985, assertiveness and
responsiveness have been identified as the two main dimensions in communication style research
(Waldherr & Muck, 2011). Assertive communicators are typically described as independent,
forceful, and dominant; they also have a strong personality and take control in initiating,
maintaining, and terminating conversations (Richmond & McCroskey, 2000). In comparison,
responsive communicators are other-oriented and have others’ feelings, concerns, and needs in
mind (Richmond & Martin, 1998). Words often used to describe responsive communicators
include “helpful, responsive to others, sympathetic, compassionate, sensitive to the needs of
others, sincere, gentle, warm, tender, and friendly” (Richmond & McCroskey, 1990, p. 449).
Responsive communicators are viewed as more socially attractive than assertive individuals
(Sullivan, 1977).
Studies conducted across various settings have consistently shown the positive role of
responsive communicative style; for instance, students demonstrated satisfaction, trustworthiness
as well as high motivation and willingness to communicate with responsive instructors (Aylor &
Oppliger, 2003; Martin & Myers, 2006; Wooten & McCroskey, 1996). Instructors with a
responsive socio-communicative orientation also reported higher level of job satisfaction
(DiClemente, Ditrinco, Gibbons, & Myers, 2013). In addition, in exploring effective physician-
patient communication, researchers have found that both physician assertiveness and
responsiveness were related to physician credibility while physician responsiveness was highly
associated with patient satisfaction (Richmond, Smith Jr, Heisel, & McCroskey, 2002). Other
organizational research has endeavored to untangle the association between supervisors’
communication styles and their personal characteristics (e.g., Cole & MaCroskey, 2000; Porter,
Wrench, & Hoskinson, 2007; Teven, MaCroskey, & Richmond, 2006). For instance, Porter et al.
found that employees’ perceived supervisor responsiveness is positively related to supervisor
extraversion and negatively related to neuroticism and psychoticism (2007). More recently,
public relations scholars have spearheaded efforts to apply the socio-communicative style to
studying executive leadership communication and employee communication. Men (2015) and
Tsai and Men (2016) examined the role of CEOs’ responsive and assertive communication styles
in influencing the organization’s relationship quality with both internal and external publics.
Although responsive and assertive communication styles have been argued to be important
components of effective communication(McCroskey & Richmond, 1996; Merrill & Reid, 1981),
past findings seem to suggest that responsive leadership communication is more effective in
nurturing relationships and generating positive organizational outcomes compared with assertive
leadership communication.
Therefore, to develop a normative model of a positive emotional culture, the present
study focuses on leaders’ responsive communication. Responsive leaders have a low level of
verbal aggressiveness and are more likely to listen with patience and compassion (Martin &
Anderson, 1996). They also carry facial animations and open body gestures when it comes to
nonverbal communication (Richmond, 2002), suggesting a high nonverbal immediacy (Rocca,
Martin, & Toale, 1998). In addition, research in interpersonal conflict showed that responsive
individuals have a collaborative tendency in conflict situations and have the highest chance to
manage conflicts through emotions and logic (V. J. Lashbrook, W. B. Lashbrook, Larsen, &
Buchholz, 1978). Thus, given that responsive leaders are good at expressing their feelings and
emotions and are oriented toward cultivating good relationships in their interactions with
employees, we argue that responsive leadership communication can be an effective approach in
fostering a positive emotional culture. Therefore, the following hypothesis is proposed:
H2: Responsive leadership communication positively influences a positive emotional
Employee Supportive Behaviors
Another purpose of the present study is to examine how internal communication and a
positive emotional culture interact to influence employee OCB and advocacy. We deem social
exchange theory (SET) (Blau, 1964) as the theoretical underpinning of this proposed
relationship. The basic assumption of SET is that “individuals enter into a relationship with
others to maximize their benefits” (Aselage & Eisenberger, 2003, p. 491). In the organizational
context, organizations provide “material and socioemotional benefits” in exchange for
employees’ “loyalty and effort” (p. 491). According to SET, employees who receive highly
valued “socioemotional resources” from their organization can experience a degree of
indebtedness, which subsequently causes a sense of obligation to repay their organization (Saks,
2006, p. 603). Therefore, employees reciprocate by demonstrating positive attitudes and
behaviors, such as engaging more in their work (Wayne & Green, 1993) and performing OCB
(Bowler, 2006; Organ, 1988). Empirical evidence shows that organizational support, a good
working condition, and trust in supervisors are important factors that elicit employee
reciprocation (Aselage & Eisenberger, 2003; Folger & Konovsky, 1989). Overall, SET has been
applied in a myriad of organizational studies to explain the motivational factors of positive
employee behaviors (Settoon, Bennett, & Liden, 1996).
Organizational citizenship behavior (OCB) describes employees’ discretionary behavior,
which is defined as “behavior that is not an enforceable requirement of the role...behavior being
rather a matter of choice...not necessarily recognized and rewarded by the organization” (Khan &
Rashid, 2012, p. 84; Organ, 1988, p. 4). Past studies have linked OCB with effective
organizational performance and success (Organ, Podsakoff, & MacKenzie, 2006). For example,
Katz (1964) argued that organizational effectiveness relies on the voluntary efforts of employees,
especially in circumstances where formalizing roles in organizations is difficult (Bowler,
Halbesleben, & Paul, 2010).
Emotional Culture and OCB
Organizational culture plays an important role in promoting OCB (Somech & Drach-
Zahavy, 2004; Werner, 2000). In a supportive culture, employees are “valued as human beings,
not just as cogs in a machine” (Harrison, 1987, p. 13). Therefore, they tend to reciprocate by
performing above and beyond the call of duty (Wayne, Shore, & Liden, 1997). Research also
suggests that OCB likely occurs when employees are emotionally attached and identified with
their organization (Efraty & Wolfe, 1988; Lewicki & Bunker, 1996). Scholars recently started to
examine the effect of discrete organizational emotions on employee attitude and behaviors. They
found that organizational pride positively influences OCB (Helm, 2013; Helm, Renk, & Mishra,
2016), employee creativity (Gouthier & Rhein, 2011), and job satisfaction (Weiss &
Cropanzano, 1996). Other emotions like joy are linked to good team performance (Rhee, 2006;
O’Neill & Rothbard, 2014). Meanwhile, companionate love is positively related to job
satisfaction and organizational commitment but negatively related to employee absenteeism
(Barsade & O’Neill, 2014). A positive group affect is identified as a key incentive for positive
employee work behaviors, such as proactive (Tsai, Chen, & Liu, 2007) and citizenship behaviors
(Dalal, Lam, Weiss, Welch, & Hulin, 2009). Therefore, a positive emotional culture filled with
companionate love, joy, pride, and gratitude can motivate employees to reciprocate by engaging
in OCB (Organ, 1988). Thus, this study suggests the following hypothesis:
H3: A positive emotional culture positively influences OCB.
Internal Communication and OCB
Corporate Symmetrical Internal Communication and OCB. Symmetrical internal
communication, as a positive and ethical communication model, advocates openness and
transparency and empowers employees in decision-making. It showcases organizations’
“employee-centric values and organizations’ genuine care and concern for employees’ interests”
(Men & Bowen, 2017, p. 174). Numerous research has demonstrated that symmetrical internal
communication contributes to various employee outcomes, such as job satisfaction, perception of
relationships with organizations, employee engagement, and positive employee communication
behavior (Jo & Shim, 2005; Kang & Sung, 2016; Kim & Rhee, 2011; Men & Stacks, 2014). It
has also been negatively associated with employee turnover intention. One recent study
specifically found that OCB is influenced by employees’ communication satisfaction, thus
pointing to the need to create a positive communication environment to foster employees’ extra-
role (non-mandatory) behavior (Chan & Lai, 2017). Although abundant research has focused on
identifying the antecedents of OCB (Podsakoff, MacKenzie, Paine, & Bachrach, 2000), few
studies have investigated the role of communication (see exceptions: Chan & Lai, 2017;
Moideenkutty, Blau, Kumar, & Nalakath, 2006; Kandlousi, & Abdollahi, 2010; Walden &
Kingsley Westerman, 2018). Therefore, we base our rationale on SET and argue that employees
who benefit from corporate symmetrical communication are likely to repay their organization by
demonstrating OCB.
H4: Corporate symmetrical communication positively influences OCB.
Responsive Leadership Communication and OCB. Supervisors’ communication
effectiveness has been consistently associated with positive employee outcomes, such as
employee engagement, employee–organization relationship, and employee satisfaction (Men,
2014a; Men, 2014b). We have previously argued that employees likely perceive humanistic care
from the management that is not merely task-oriented. Responsive leaders fulfill this need by
communicating with warmth, tenderness, and sincerity and in return, employees go the extra
mile in performing beyond the call of duty. One study found that perceived supervisor listening,
a key aspect of responsiveness, is positively associated with OCB (Lloyd, Boer, Keller, &
Voelpel, 2015). Another study associated leaders’ social skills—a predisposition that shares
similarity with responsiveness in the relationship management aspect—with building trust and
eliciting OCB (Krishnan & Arora, 2008). Thus, this study proposes the following hypothesis:
H5: Leadership responsive communication positively influences OCB.
Emotional Culture, OCB, and Employee Advocacy
Even though employee advocacy has not been extensively researched in strategic
communication scholarship, it has become a buzzword in the professional literature (Men,
2014a). A review of recent studies has revealed the trend of viewing employees as credible
corporate ambassadors and brand advocates due to their neutral role compared to communication
professionals (Center & Jackson, 2003; Men, 2014a; Mishra, Boynton, & Mishra, 2014). Kim
and Rhee (2011) conceptualized employee communication behavior to highlight employees’
roles as organizational advocates, including megaphoning, their external communication
behavior about their organization, and scouting, their voluntary communication efforts to bring
relevant information to their organizations. Despite certain conceptual overlaps with positive
megaphoning, employee advocacy is an influential and behavioral construct that goes beyond the
communicative dimension. Employees who are corporate advocates not only communicate
positively about their company, but also engage in other supportive actions, such as volunteering
in local communities, to promote their company’s social responsibility initiative.
In this study, we define employee advocacy as employees’ voluntary behavior in
forwarding and sharing positive information about their organizations, as well as in
recommending, supporting, and defending their organization to the external public through their
words and actions (Men, 2014a; Walden & Kingsley Westerman, 2018). Following this
conceptualization, empirical studies evidenced that leaders’ open communication, organizational
symmetrical communication, employee-organization relationships, and employees’
organizational commitment all contributed to fostering employee advocacy (Men, 2014a;
Walden & Kingsley Westerman, 2018). Drawing from SET and existing studies indicating the
vital role of culture in influencing employee behaviors, a positive emotional culture can also
motivate employees to engage in external advocacy. Employees who work in a joyous and caring
environment can be intrinsically motivated to engage in positive word-of-mouth in their
conversations with friends and family. Likewise, a culture filled with pride and gratitude can
stimulate employees’ willingness to defend and promote their organization because they likely
internalize their organization’s issues and success as their own. This brings us to another
H6: A positive emotional culture positively influences employee advocacy.
Even though Van Dyne, Graham, and Dienesch’s (1994) conceptualization of OCB
involves “advocacy participation,” it emphasizes employees acting as internal change facilitators
by “making suggestions... and encouraging other employees to speak up” (Kim, Lee, & Hwang,
2008, p.181). Therefore, to enhance conceptual clarity, we argue that it is beneficial to
distinguish between OCB and employee advocacy due to employees’ differential orientation
toward internal (within organizations, i.e., OCB) versus external (outside of organizations, i.e.,
advocacy) extra-role behavior. The positive outcomes of OCB, such as seeing the success of
their organization, may encourage employees to engage in external advocacy. In other words,
employees who are already internal advocates of their organization tend to do the same
externally. Therefore, the last hypothesis is stated.
H7: OCB positively influences employee advocacy behavior.
The hypothesized model (Figure 1) was tested through an online survey of 506
employees who worked in 19 diverse industry sectors in the United States in February 2017, with
the assistance of a global provider of survey services, Survey Sampling International (SSI)
( To obtain a representative sample with comparable genders,
age groups, and corporation sizes across various income and education levels, we used stratified
and quota random sampling strategies. The final sample included 56.3% males, 43.7% females,
as well as 53.6% non-management and 46.4% management employees. The average age of the
respondents was 46, and the average corporate tenure was 11 years. Approximately 62.5% of the
respondents held at least a bachelor’s degree.
The study used a seven-point Likert scale ranging from 1 (strongly disagree) to 7
(strongly agree) to measure the focal concepts (i.e., corporate symmetrical communication,
responsive leadership communication, positive culture, OCB, and employee advocacy behavior).
All measurement items used were adopted from the previous literature and then modified to fit
the context of this study. Before administering the questionnaire to the participants, an online
pretest was conducted with 100 randomly selected respondents through SSI. Our preliminary
analysis of the reliability and validity of measures demonstrated satisfactory results.
Corporate symmetrical communication was assessed using seven items developed by
Dozier et al. (1995) (e.g., “Most communication between management and other employees in
this organization can be considered a two-way communication,” “This company encourages
different opinions’’ α = .92). Responsive leadership communication was measured with nine
items adopted from Richmond and McCroskey (1990) (e.g., sincere, friendly, and
compassionate, α = .98). To operationalize a positive emotional culture, 13 items adapted from
the literature (i.e., Allen, Machleit, & Marine, 1988; Barsade & O’Neil, 2014; Todd & Harris,
2009) were utilized. Specifically, employees were asked to report the extent to which they agreed
with the words describing the prevailing emotions in their organization and their feelings about
its atmosphere, climate, or culture. Four items were used to measure emotional culture of joy
(i.e., delighted, happy, joyful, and excited, α = .97); three items measured the culture of
companionate love (i.e., affectionate, loving, and compassion, α = .93); three items measured the
culture of pride (i.e., proud, superior, worthy, α = .88); and three items measured the culture of
gratitude (i.e., grateful, thankful, appreciative, α = .81). The measurement of employee
supportive behaviors of organizational citizenship and employee advocacy were adopted from
Men and Bowen (2017). OCB was measured with four items (e.g., “When the workload is most
intense, I work extra hours by shortening usual breaks or staying at work later than usual,” “Even
when it is not required, I try to guide the new members of my department,” α = .70). Employee
advocacy was measured with three items (e.g., “I speak favorably about this company in public,”
“I defend the company when hearing criticisms from others,” α = .89). To test the hypothesized
model, structural equation modeling (SEM) analysis was employed using the AMOS 24.0
The proposed model was analyzed and interpreted by employing structural equation
modeling analysis using the AMOS 24.0 software. In the structural model, the unidimensional
variables of corporate symmetrical communication, responsive leadership communication, OCB,
and employee advocacy were treated as observed variables. A positive emotional culture was
treated as a latent variable with the sub-dimensions of companionate love, joy, pride, and
The test of the initial SEM model revealed acceptable but not good fit to the data: c2(16)
= 77.56, p < .001, c2/df = 4.85, RMSEA = .09 (90% confidence interval: .07–.11), SRMR = .04,
TLI = .97, and CFI = .98. Based on the modification indices, the model was slightly modified by
adding one error covariance between the two sub-dimensions of a positive emotional culture,
companionate love, and joy.
Byrne (2010, p. 111) argued that “forcing large error terms to be
uncorrelated is rarely appropriate with real data.” Allowing error covariance within the same
construct can explain content redundancy. The modified model demonstrated excellent fit with
the data: c2(15) = 20.62, p = .149, c2/df = 1.37, RMSEA = .03 (90% confidence interval: .00–
.05), SRMR = .02, TLI = .997, and CFI = .998.
To identify the model with the best fit, one theoretically plausible competing model, in
which a positive emotional culture fully mediates the effects of corporate symmetrical
communication and responsive leadership communication on OCB, was compared with the
The error covariance between companionate love and joy, both of which are basic human emotions (Allen, Machleit, & Marine,
1988), was .45.
hypothesized model. The result showed that the competing model fit was significantly worse
than the hypothesized model, Δ c2(2) = 20.62, p <.001. Therefore, the hypothesized model was
retained as the final model (see Figure 2). Six structural paths demonstrated significant results at
the p < .001 or p < .01 level.
Hypotheses Testing
Hypotheses 1 and 2 proposed the positive effects of corporate symmetrical
communication and leadership responsive communication on fostering an organization’s positive
emotional culture. Results confirmed both hypotheses. Specifically, corporate symmetrical
communication demonstrated a strong positive effect on organizational positive culture (β = .75,
p < .001), indicating that a positive culture of companionate love, joy, pride, and gratitude is
likely nurtured when organizations’ communication system and climate are two-way;
symmetrical; emphasize listening, reciprocity, and feedback; and value employees’ voice and
inputs. Likewise, leaders’ responsive communication demonstrated a significant positive effect
on organizational positive culture (β = .09, p < .05), although to a lesser extent as compared to
the effect of corporate symmetrical communication. The finding indicates that when
organizational leaders at different levels communicate in a responsive, friendly, warm,
compassionate, and caring manner, such a communication style contributes to the development
of a positive culture characterized by companionate love, joy, pride, and gratitude.
A secondary focus of the study was to examine the effects of a positive emotional culture
on employee supportive behaviors, namely, OCB (Hypothesis 3) and employee advocacy
(Hypothesis 6). Results showed that the emotional culture of companionate love, joy, pride, and
gratitude strongly and positively influenced OCB (β = .23, p < .001) and employee advocacy (β
= .60, p < .001), thus supporting Hypotheses 3 and 6. Therefore, when organizations’ atmosphere
and culture are characterized by compassion, caring, tenderness for others, joy, delight, a sense
of pride, gratefulness, and appreciation, employees are more likely to reciprocate with a
discretionary behavior inside their organization and advocate for their organization externally.
Hypotheses 4 and 5 predicted the positive effects of corporate symmetrical
communication and responsive leadership communication on employees’ OCB. Results showed
that, as hypothesized, corporate symmetrical communication strongly and positively influenced
OCB (β = .26, p < .001), indicating that an employee-centered communication system that cares
for employees’ interests and concerns, as well as values employees voice and feedback is likely
to promote employees’ discretionary and helping behaviors in their organization, thus supporting
Hypothesis 4. However, contrary to our expectation, responsive leadership communication did
not show a significant direct effect on OCB, failing to support hypothesis 5.
Finally, Hypothesis 7 proposed a positive association between employees’ citizenship
behavior inside their organization and advocacy behavior outside of it. Results supported this
hypothesis. Specifically, OCB demonstrated a strong positive effect on employee advocacy (β =
.34, p < .001). Thus, the more the employees engage in discretionary efforts inside their
organization, the greater the likelihood that they will defend and advocate for their organization
Indirect (mediation) effects
Apart from hypothesis testing, we conducted a formal test of indirect effects using a
bootstrap procedure (N = 2,000 samples) to further explore the role of a positive emotional
culture in the relationship between internal communication and employee supportive behavior.
Results showed the significant indirect effects in paths from corporate symmetrical
communication (β = .18, p = .018 [95% CI: .04 to .27]) and responsive leadership
communication (β = .02, p = .018 [95% CI: .00 to .05]) to OCB through an organizational
positive emotional culture. Therefore, a positive emotional culture mediates the effects of
internal communication on OCB at the corporate and leadership levels. In addition, indirect
effects in paths from corporate symmetrical communication to employee advocacy through a
positive emotional culture and OCB were significant, β = .61, p = .004 [95% CI: .56 to .69],
suggesting that a positive emotional culture and OCB are mediators in the relationship between
corporate symmetrical communication and employee advocacy.
Discussion and Conclusions
The purpose of this study was to explore the role of internal communication in fostering a
positive emotional culture characterized by joy, companionate love, pride, and gratitude, and
how these two factors interact in promoting employee supportive behaviors. Results provided
significant implications for management communication and public relations scholars,
practitioners, and organizational leaders. These implications are further discussed below.
Internal Communication and Emotional Culture
This study showed that corporate symmetrical communication contributed to the
development of a positive emotional culture. A symmetrical internal communication system is
employee-centered and one that values reciprocity, openness, trust, and feedback. When
employees’ desire to be heard, valued, and empowered is satisfied, and when they feel the care,
respect, and mutual reliance from engaging in open and equal communication with their
organization, they can be happy, proud, appreciative, and affectionate. Previous scholars noted
that symmetrical communication is vital in shaping organizational culture (Sriramesh, 1996). For
instance, a symmetrical internal communication system has been associated with a participative
organizational culture, which emphasizes employee input, participation, sharing, collaboration,
and shared decision-making (L. A. Grunig et al., 2002). The current study’s finding expands the
literature by suggesting that symmetrical communication not only matters for how employees
think and behave (i.e., cognitive culture) but also how they feel (i.e., emotional culture) in their
The study also showed that leadership responsive communication positively influenced
the formation of a positive emotional culture. Employees interact with their direct supervisors
daily (Men & Bowen, 2017). Thus, how supervisors communicate or interact with subordinates
exerts a strong influence on how subordinates feel about their supervisors and the overall
working culture. The study findings show that supervisors who demonstrated warmth,
friendliness, compassion, understanding, and sincerity in their communication with subordinates
induced the growth of happiness, companionate love, pride, and gratitude among employees.
Responsive leaders who placed great emphasis on the relational dimension of management and
were sensitive to employees’ feelings and concerns (Richmond & Martin, 1998) likely garnered
favorability from employees, thereby fostering a positive emotional culture in their organization.
Overall, the finding contributes to the emerging literature, which identifies the crucial role of
leadership communication in generating positive organizational and employee outcomes (Men,
2015; Tsai & Men, 2016). In other words, leaders’ communication behavior and style affect their
organizations’ culture and climate and their employees’ experiences and feelings.
Influence of Emotional Culture and Internal Communication on Employee Supportive
As predicted, a positive emotional culture positively influenced employee OCB. SET
provides a solid theoretical support to this finding. A positive emotional culture characterized by
joy, companionate love, pride, and gratitude is a highly valued socioemotional resource provided
by organizations. Employees who receive this type of socioemotional resource can sense a strong
support and goodwill from their organization. As a result, employees feel obligated to repay their
organization by performing a discretionary behavior that is not part of their job description. The
literature has consistently shown that OCB is the key consequence of a good organizational
culture (Somech & Drach-Zahavy, 2004; Werner, 2000). This study supports and even extends
the line of research on OCB and culture, mainly by attributing employee OCB as a reciprocal
behavior to a positive emotional culture from which they benefit. Moreover, this finding
demonstrates that nurturing a positive emotional culture is just as important as building a healthy
cognitive culture given that emotional culture can directly affect employees’ behavior.
Employees working in a positive emotional culture can be altruistic in helping coworkers,
respectful to organizational members, concerned about the welfare of their company, and can
engage in extra-role activities.
Moreover, a positive emotional culture can lead to increased employee advocacy. The
present study not only enriched the growing research interest in employee advocacy (Men,
2014b), but also delved into organizational culture and pointed out the critical role of emotional
culture in generating employees’ positive external behavior. To return their organizations’ favor
for creating a positive working culture, employees are more likely to speak in favor of their
organizations in public, support, and defend them when criticisms arise. Such a result highlights
the idea that the emotional culture perceived internally by the employees has a significant
influence on their external behavior.
Corporate symmetrical communication also directly affects employee OCB, indicating
that a two-way, equal dialogue could be a key motivator for employees to exceed their respective
job obligations. This finding not only concurs with arguments made by previous scholars that
symmetrical internal communication contributes to employee work engagement (Men & Stacks,
2014) and positive employee–organization relationship (Jo & Shim, 2005; Kim & Rhee, 2011),
but also extends the scope of employee outcomes from the attitudinal to the behavioral level.
However, responsive leadership communication demonstrated no significant direct effect on
OCB despite having an indirect effect through emotional culture. This result may be attributed to
the fact that a positive emotional culture is a prerequisite for responsive leader communication to
affect OCB.
Theoretical and Practical Implications
The findings of the study provide important theoretical and practical implications. First,
theoretically speaking, and with a particular emphasis on organizational emotional culture (i.e., a
positive culture characterized by companionate love, joy, pride, and gratitude) the study fills the
research gap in organizational culture research, which predominantly focuses on the cognitive
aspect of culture. The theorization and operationalization of emotional culture sets a benchmark
for future research along this line. Second, from an internal public relations perspective, the
study enhances the theoretical understanding of the dynamics among internal communication,
emotions, and workplace culture. By demonstrating the positive effects of corporate-level
symmetrical and leadership-level responsive types of communication on a positive emotional
culture, as well as supportive employee behaviors, the study expands the internal communication
literature and provides additional evidence on how communication strategies at various levels
promote a positive culture and drive organizational effectiveness. In addition, the study
conceptualized supportive employee behaviors by integrating internal citizenship and external
employee advocacy behaviors. Demonstrating how supportive employee behaviors are promoted
by corporate and leadership-level types of strategic communication and a positive emotional
culture, the study confirms that the value of internal communication goes beyond changing
employee perceptions and attitudes or developing mutually beneficial relationships (Men &
Bowen, 2017), more importantly, it changes employee behaviors in accordance with the needs of
the organization.
The study also provides important implications for management communication and
public relations professionals. Organizational leaders have long been managing how employees
think and behave. However, they are either unaware or feel incapable of managing how
employees feel at work. Others may even think that managing employees’ emotions is
unprofessional or beyond the scope of their duty (Barsade & O’Neill, 2016). However, the
current study suggests that managing emotional culture is vital and should thus be considered as
a key element of effective leadership. A positive emotional culture elicits positive employee
behaviors which, in turn, enhance organizational effectiveness. Thus, communication
professionals should help educate leaders about their role in fostering a positive emotional
culture. Practitioners should show empirical evidence that supports the connection between a
positive emotional culture and positive employee and organizational outcomes.
Our findings also suggest that internal communication unlocks the secret of a positive
emotional culture. Hence, leaders or managers should communicate in a responsive manner. A
positive emotional culture is formed when leaders show care, warmth, empathy, sincerity, and
willingness to listen. Thus, communication professionals should equip leaders with
communication guidelines and remind them to pay attention to employees’ daily concerns and
feedback. Meanwhile, communication managers should be involved in organizational decision-
making to ensure that an employee-centered symmetrical communication system exists, in which
trust, reciprocity, employee feedback, and voice are highly valued.
Limitations and Future Directions
Despite the original findings and important implications, this study has several
limitations. First, this study employed a cross-sectional survey design, which could not establish
the order of effects among variables. The application of SEM remedied the issue, but future
research should examine the true causal relationships among variables using a longitudinal or
experimental design. In addition, researchers can utilize qualitative methods, such as interviews,
focus groups, and case studies, to gain an in-depth understanding of why a positive emotional
culture matters and exactly how internal communication can foster a positive emotional culture.
Furthermore, this study only explored the responsiveness dimension of socio-communicative
style. Although it has been identified as a significant factor in cultivating a positive emotional
culture, future studies should also include assertiveness to compare their respective roles and
potential interactions in affecting emotional culture and employee behaviors. Moreover, given
the innate connection between organizational culture and organizational identity as
organizational identity has been suggested a self-reflective product of the dynamic processes of
organizational culture (Hatch & Schultz, 1997), it is worthy of examination how organizational
identity could potentially mediates the effect of emotional culture on various employee and
organizational outcomes. Likewise, how emotional culture may be associated with other strategic
communication outcomes, such as employee–organization relationship, employee engagement,
and internal reputation, deserves more scholarly investigation. Finally, this study focused on
supervisory leadership communication from the employees’ perspectives. Future scholars can
investigate the communication style of organizations’ top management as they set the tone for
internal communication (Men & Bowen, 2017). Gathering inputs from top leaders and
communication managers can generate additional information on the role of emotional culture
and how to strategically cultivate a positive emotional culture that eventually leads to positive
employee outcomes and organizational success.
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Figure 1. Hypothesized model of internal communication, positive emotional culture, and supportive employee
Corporate Symmetrical
Responsive Leadershp
Positive Emotional Culture
Love Joy Pride Gratitude
Organizational Citizenship
Employee Advocacy
Figure 2. Results of the hypothesized model.
Coefficients are standardized regression weights. For the sake of brevity, the error terms of indicators and
disturbances of endogenous variables were omitted from the figure. *** p<.001, * p<.05.
Corporate Symmetrical
Responsive Leadershp
Positive Emotional Culture
Love Joy Pride Gratitude
Organizational Citizenship
Employee Advocacy
... This can be achieved by strategically encouraging interpersonal relationships, teamwork, collaboration and disruptive thinking. These practices, accompanied by ethical, assertive and empathetic leadership styles as well as implementing constructive, friendly and positive inter-organisational language can create a commitment, trust and passion for working for a certain organisation (Men andYue, 2019, Jimenez-Marın et al., 2021). At the same time, and also in this issue, Gerrit Adrian Boehncke's paper argued that corporate social responsibility (CSR) has a high potential for recruiting talent including on social media and using digital channels. ...
... Finalmente, Rita & Yue (2019) utilizó un estudio cuantitativo descriptivo, que en base a 506 encuestados, se logró obtener que la comunicación interna en una empresa, caracterizada por el respeto, la gratitud y la responsabilidad, permite que la interacción entre los individuos sea un recurso para mejorar la cultura laboral. Además, los resultados indicaron que la comunicación es un recurso clave para que todas las áreas cumplan con sus tareas y exista una cooperación general, en el caso de la PNP, esta es una herramienta clave porque en vista de la labor que deben cumplir, la comunicación entre ellos es un compromiso que fortalece el vínculo y aumenta la satisfacción de las labores, ya que se desarrollan de manera más rápida y efectiva. ...
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OBJETIVO: La presente investigación tuvo como propósito determinar la correlación entre el Desempeño laboral y comunicación interna en la PNP del Distrito de San Luis, Lima, 2016.METODOLOGÍA: La metodología usada fue cuantitativo, hipotético-deductivo de diseño no experimental de nivel correlacional. RESULTADOS: Se evidencio mediante la correlación Rho Spearman = 0.727 que existe correlación entre las variables, además, presento un nivel de correlación alto. CONCLUSIÓN: Finalmente, se concluye que, el desempeño laboral tiene correlación alta con la comunicación interna en la PNP del Distrito de san Luis, Lima, 2016.
This study describes the influence of Work Discipline and Internal Communication and its effect on Employee WorkPerformance. The object of this research is PT Dwi Indah. This study discusses the theory of Work Discipline andInternal Communication. This study uses a quantitative method through a questionnaire survey which was distributeddirectly to 70 respondents which was then processed using SPSS version 20.0 with the sampling method being non-probability sampling. The results of the hypothesis test (t test) that work discipline has a significant effect on workperformance with a t count of 2,153 and a table of 1,996. Internal communication has a significant effect on workperformance with t count of 3.398 T table 1.996 with a coefficient of determination 41.7%. Work Discipline and InternalCommunication have a significant and simultaneous effect on employee work performance. The implications of thisresearch can provide an understanding for the management to pay attention to Work Discipline and good internalcommunication, especially at PT Dwi Indah. Keywords: Work Discipline, Communication, Performance
Son çeyrek asırda önemi kurumlar tarafından anlaşılan ve odaklanılan simetrik iletişim, kurumların sürdürülebilir başarıyı yakalamalarında önemli rol oynamaktadır. Kurumda karşılıklı anlayışı, müzakereyi, denge ve yoğun geri bildirim ortamını esas alan simetrik iletişim, çalışanların aidiyet duygularını artırarak kurumsal performanslarını olumlu yönde etkilemektedir. Bunun yanında simetrik iletişimin yaşatıldığı kurumlarda, çalışanların yaratıcılıklarını daha rahat bir şekilde yansıtabildikleri söylenebilmektedir. Bu durum yükseköğretim kurumlarında çalışan akademik personel için de benzer özellik göstermektedir. Çalışmada simetrik iletişim, kurum içi halkla ilişkiler süreci dahilinde ele alınmıştır. Bu çalışma ile simetrik iletişimin akademisyenlerin yaratıcılığı üzerindeki etkisinin ölçümlenmesi amaçlanmıştır. Buradan hareketle simetrik iletişim ve yaratıcılık arasındaki ilişkiyi ortaya koymak için nicel araştırma desenlerinden ilişkisel desen kullanılmıştır. Söz konusu araştırmada kolayda örneklem yöntemine göre belirlenmiş 252 akademisyene anket yapılmıştır. Anket sonucunda elde edilen veriler, SPSS 21.0 ile analiz edilmiştir. Buna göre simetrik iletişim ile yaratıcılık arasında pozitif yönlü anlamlı bir ilişki olduğu görülmüştür. Sonuç olarak kurum içinde dengeli ve empatiye dayalı simetrik iletişimin, akademisyenlerin yaratıcılığını olumlu yönde etkilediği görülmüştür.
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This research aims to understand standards of conduct as part of ethics in shaping workplace culture. An exploratory research method is used in this study to analyse the survey result of workplace culture conducted biannually by an international organization in seven provinces in Indonesia. The same data are taken to compare Indonesia with the other seven ASEAN countries: Cambodia, Lao DPR, Malaysia, Myanmar, Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam to enrich the interpretation of the survey result. The research is to answer two research questions: to what extent standards of conduct as part of ethics influence the workplace culture using gender perspective lens and to find out the most crucial factors in cultivating a conducive working environment.
Bullying is a prevalent workplace problem that has received relatively little research attention addressing managerial intervention. We developed a framework and propositions based on the bullying literature and expectancy violations theory (EVT) for understanding managerial interventions aimed at ameliorating workplace bullying. The target’s emotional responses to bullying, target’s profile type, bully’s profile type, and manager’s perceptions of the bully’s organizational value are considered as predictors of violations of the manager’s expectations and intensity of managerial intervention. EVT provides a framework for understanding the components of workplace bullying relationships. Recommendations for future research are also discussed.
Healthy, mutually beneficial relationships with internal stakeholders within an organisation are crucial for its survival, for achieving long-term goals, and for ensuring value for the organisation and the stakeholders. Organisations should therefore manage internal communication strategically. However, there is no practical or academic consensus as to how to identify “internal stakeholders”, which poses challenges in the diverse South African corporate context. This qualitative study attempted to clarify how best to identify internal stakeholder groupings as recipients of communication. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with ten internal communication practitioners employed by ten of the Top 500 companies in various sectors in South Africa and with eight independent internal communication consultants in South Africa. The participants were purposively selected for their achievements, responsibilities, knowledge, and experience in corporate internal communication. We found that the traditional view of internal stakeholders as comprising employees only has become obsolete, and that the volatile South African corporate environment requires a wider range of stakeholders to be included in the organisation's internal circle. The article concludes with recommendations for future research.
Informed by crisis communication literature and dialogic communication theory, this study proposed an internal crisis communication model for the COVID-19 pandemic, considering base crisis responses (i.e., instructing information, adjusting information) and dialogic competency (i.e., mutuality, openness) as key variables. Trust in organizational commitment related to the COVID-19 pandemic was presented as a mediator. Through this model, we examined how employees’ sense of belonging to their organization, relational satisfaction, and their support for organizational decisions about COVID-19 were related to the factors presented. An online survey of full-time employees in the U.S. was conducted. The study found that instructing information in the context of COVID-19 was positively associated with employee trust in their organization’s pandemic-related commitment and, in turn, increased employees’ support for organizational decisions, sense of belonging, and relationship satisfaction. Conversely, adjusting information had a negative effect on employee trust in organizational commitment. The dialogic competency of employers in COVID-19-related internal crisis communication, characterized by mutuality and openness, was not only indirectly related to positive employee responses through trust in their organization’s commitment, but was also directly related to greater support of organizational decisions, a sense of belonging, and relationship satisfaction. Based on the findings, theoretical and practical implications were discussed.
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Internal communication plays a pivotal part in an organisation’s survival. It is regarded as an investment in an organisation’s success and underpins organisational effectiveness. However, when organisations face internal communication challenges, these can threaten internal relationships, with dire consequences for the organisation. This is particularly so in the volatile, uncertain, complicated and ambiguous South African corporate context, which presents direct challenges for internal communication management. Internationally there has been an increase in studies exploring challenges for internal communication, with various authors indicating a need for further research. Our study addresses this gap by probing the internal communication challenges experienced in the South African corporate environment as a developing world view, to make recommendations for mitigating action. This exploratory qualitative interview-based study focused on the perceptions of practitioners working in large organisations, as well as consultants with acknowledged expertise in the field of internal communication. The findings confirmed that internal communication is a complex and multifaceted profession full of challenges. We identified 12 challenges, grouped into four clusters, namely access to technology, lack of formal communication training, parameters for inclusion of internal stakeholders, and management styles and structures. Contributions include recommendations for practice, together with suggestions for further research.
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This is a classic textbook in public relations, which emphasizes a theoretical, managerial approach to public relations.
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Purpose The purpose of this paper is to examine how a company’s symmetrical internal communication efforts could influence its employees’ perception of relationship outcomes with the company and the subsequent employee communication behaviors about the company to others and their turnover intention. Additionally, the mediation effects of employee-organization relationship (EOR) quality between symmetrical internal communication and employee engagement were tested. Design/methodology/approach The study collected the data from a survey of randomly selected 438 individuals who work as sales representatives of the case organization. Respondents were randomly selected through stratified sampling. For the overall statistical procedure, this study adopted the two-step structural equation modeling: on the basis of the final measurement model analysis from confirmatory factor analysis, the proposed structural model was tested using latent variables. Findings The findings of this research clearly demonstrate: employee/internal communication management is linked with employee engagement; employee engagement enhances supportive employee communication behaviors and reduces turnover intention. Also, the mediation results show strong mediation of EORs on the effects of symmetrical internal communication on employee engagement. Research limitations/implications Employees’ communication behaviors such as megaphoning and scouting have special strategic values to organizations. With information seeking, selecting, forwarding, and sharing behaviors of employees, organizations may obtain more valuable information than through formal procedures and channels. Professional literature has long been supporting the importance of fostering positive employee communication behaviors (ECBs), suggesting that WOM and information from the employees deemed as most trustworthy by the external publics. ECBs about their organizations may be viewed as a testament of the quality of EOR. This study results show that employee engagement plays a key role in creating positive ECBs. Practical implications Pragmatically, as noted in the findings, symmetrical communication is an important factor that leads to positive ECB. To facilitate employees’ favorable communication regarding an organization, therefore, the organization needs to practice a two-way, employee-centered symmetrical communication system in its everyday communication management. Communication managers are advised to nurture internal communication practices that listen to the employees and invite their participation in addition to providing complete and fair information to employees. Second, by showing the significant positive influence of EOR on employee engagement and ECB, the finding of the study suggests that strategic relationship management with internal publics affect overall management effectiveness. Hence, organizational managers need to adopt various relationship cultivation strategies in their communication with employees, which have been previously proposed by several studies. Originality/value The findings of the study demonstrated that the effects of employee relationship management and symmetrical internal communication indeed exist beyond ECBs to the actual managerial outcomes. The findings also suggest a three-stage model of employee communication management: employee/internal communication management antecedents; employee engagement; and supportive outcomes of effective employee communication programs, such as supportive/extra ECBs.
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The current study examined the influence of passion and pride on employees of professional sport organizations. Anecdotally, much has been noted about the role that emotions play in making the sport industry one of the world’s largest and most visible. However, empirical investigation is lacking in relation to those who choose a career in this environment. Results from an analysis of 933 employee survey responses representing 89 teams across 5 leagues suggest that passion and pride play an important role influencing commonly-assessed workplace attitudes and behaviors. Notably, obsessive passion seems to work in a distinctly positive fashion within professional sport workplaces, as compared to its negative influence on employees within other non-sport industries researched previously.
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Organ(1988) defined organization citizenship behavior (OCB) as the individual's behavior that is discretionary, not directly or explicitly recognized by the formal reward system and that in the aggregate promotes the effective functioning of the organization. There has been numerous studies performed on organizational citizenship behavior and antecedents of this behavior were explored since this behavior contributes to the effective functioning of an organization. The positive contribution of OCB to organizational performance is widely accepted by literature (Podsakoff and MacKenzie, 1994,1997 ; Podsakoff et al., 2000).). Indeed this behaviors have been described by the service literature as being essential for achieving superior returns.There has been a significant correlation in literature between the relationships of organizational culture, leadership style and organizational justice. This research intends to further explore whether the relationship among all this constructs .Organizational commitment is a mediator and the research intends to explore its role in encouraging the exhibition of organizational citizenship behavior among academicians in private universities in Malaysia. The relevant hypotheses have been developed and further testing on its relationship will be conducted in order to investigate its impact on organizational citizenship behavior to investigate as to whether the independent variables are able to encourage the exhibition of citizenship behavior. This study will provide guidelines to help universities to further understand how to encourage organization citizenship behavior among academicians.
This study investigates the communication elements within organizations that enhance social exchanges and influence an individual’s willingness to spread positive information about their employer. Findings from a survey of employees in a United States–based health care organization (N = 223) indicate that organizational commitment mediates the relationship between employee-centered internal communication by organizations and employee advocacy. Employees with strong organizational commitment perceive that their organization values the exchange relationship, and employees, in turn, report they are likely to take extra steps to support their organization. To encourage organization-supportive employee advocacy behavior, organizations should engage in open and supportive communication with employees and cultivate lasting relationships with them.
On the basis of the proposition that love promotes commitment, the authors predicted that love would motivate approach, have a distinct signal, and correlate with commitment-enhancing processes when relationships are threatened. The authors studied romantic partners and adolescent opposite-sex friends during interactions that elicited love and threatened the bond. As expected, the experience of love correlated with approach-related states (desire, sympathy). Providing evidence for a nonverbal display of love, four affiliation cues (head nods, Duchenne smiles, gesticulation, forward leans) correlated with self-reports and partner estimates of love. Finally, the experience and display of love correlated with commitment-enhancing processes (e.g.. constructive conflict resolution, perceived trust) when the relationship was threatened. Discussion focused on love, positive emotion, and relationships.
This book presents the findings, applications, and theoretical underpinnings of a unique leadership communication model: motivating language theory. Drawing from management, social science, and communication theories, motivating language theory demonstrates how leader-to-follower speech improves employee and organizational well-being and drives positive workplace outcomes (such as employee performance, retention, and job satisfaction) in a wide array of settings. It presents an integrated model based on empirical findings and theoretical developments from the past three decades to explore the three dimensions of motivating language: direction giving language, empathetic language, and meaning-making language. It will be a comprehensive source for its empirical relationships, generalizability, theoretical basis, and future directions for research and practice. © The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2018. All rights reserved.