Managing Risk in Communication Encounters: Strategies for the Workplace

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Overview

Managing Risk in Communication Encounters: Strategies for the Workplace focuses on the types of risky interactions that threaten identities, relationships, and sometimes careers, including voicing dissent, repairing broken relationships, managing privacy, responding to harassment, offering criticism, and communicating emotion. Each chapter is grounded in real-life organizational scenarios, includes recent research, applies a standard theoretical framework, and illustrates a full range of communicative tactics and discourse practices. Throughout the book, authors Vincent R. Waldron and Jeffrey W. Kassing provide examples to spur thinking, raise questions, and help readers understand how organizations benefit when employees communicate in ways that manage risk.

Key Features

Risky work situations are examined closely to help readers understand the types of situations they may encounter in their working lives.

Vivid examples and narratives illustrate the inevitable tensions that emerge among ethical, relational, and performance obligations in the workplace.

The roles of discourse, interaction, and communication tactics in managing risk, constructing role identities, and promoting ethical workplaces are explained.

Real-life organizational scenarios and research on the lived experiences of workers help readers understand how individual, organizational, and cultural forces shape workplace communication.

A theoretical model helps students and scholars integrate existing research, analyze situations, and generate new questions.

Intended Audience

Managing Risk in Communication Encounters: Strategies for the Workplace is intended for use as a supplemental text for undergraduate and graduate courses in organizational communication, business and professional communication, leadership communication, managerial communication, and supervisory communication.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781412966672
  • Publisher: SAGE Publications
  • Publication date: 3/2/2010
  • Pages: 257
  • Sales rank: 728,973
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.80 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Vincent R. Waldron is Professor of Communication Studies at Arizona State University, where he teaches courses on communication in work and personal relationships. Professor Waldron received his Ph.D. from Ohio State University in 1989. Dr. Waldron’s research explores how employees manage difficult workplace encounters, such as expressing intense emotion, exercising upward influence, and repairing damaged relationships. The author of two previous books on these subjects, Professor Waldron has published his work in such outlets as the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, Management Communication Quarterly, and Communication Yearbook. Vince Waldron has been recognized as a Professor of the Year by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. He is chair-elect of the Interpersonal Communication Division of the National Communication Association. With his wife Kathleen and daughters Emily and Laura, Vince Waldron resides in Phoenix, Arizona.

Jeffrey W. Kassing is an Associate Professor of Communication Studies at Arizona State University where he teaches graduate and undergraduate organizational, applied, and environmental communication courses, as well as research methods. He earned his Ph.D. from Kent State University with an emphasis in organizational communication in 1997. Dr. Kassing’s primary line of research concerns how employees express dissent about organizational policies and practices. This work, which began with his dissertation and development of the Organizational Dissent Scale, now spans over a decade and appears in numerous scholarly outlets including Management Communication Quarterly, Communication Quarterly, Communication Studies, The Journal of Business Communication, and The International Encyclopedia of Communication. Before seeking a career as an academic, Dr. Kassing worked as an office manager in the real estate industry, as an area coordinator in residence life at a state college, as sales agent in the bicycle business, and as a professional house painter.

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Table of Contents

Preface xi

Chapter 1 Introduction: A Theoretical Model for Managing Workplace Risk 1

The Anatomy of Workplace Risk 2

Forms of Risk 4

Individual Risk 4

Relational Risk 7

Organizational Risk 8

Communal Risk 8

Societal Risk 9

A Communicative Approach to Risk 10

A Risk Negotiation Framework 12

Historical Factors 12

Context 12

Risk Perceptions 14

The Risk Negotiation Cycle 15

Attending 16

Sensemaking 16

Transforming 17

Maintaining 17

Outcomes of Managing Risk 18

Conclusion 19

References 19

Unit 1 Managing Risk to the Individual

Chapter 2 Delivering and Seeking Feedback 21

Why Is Delivering and Seeking Feedback Important? 24

Improving Performance 24

Adapting to Changing Conditions 26

Honoring Those "Closest to Work" 26

Managing Misunderstanding 27

Key Research Studies 29

Delivering Bad News at UPS 29

Cultivating Multisource Feedback 31

Feedback-Seeking Behavior 33

Negative Feedback and the Risk Negotiation Cycle 35

Attending 35

Sensemaking 37

Transforming 38

Maintaining 39

Conclusion 39

References 41

Chapter 3 Managing Emotion 43

Why Is Managing Emotion Important? 44

Improving Task Performance 45

Enhancing Climate 45

Forging Relationships 46

Signaling Moral Failure 46

Identity Restriction 48

Burnout 49

Key Research Studies 49

Emotion as the Work 50

Emotion in Work Relationships 50

Emotional Tyranny 53

Coping With Emotion and the Risk Negotiation Cycle 56

Attending 56

Sensemaking 59

Transforming 62

Maintaining 63

Conclusion 63

References 65

Chapter 4 Resisting Bullying and Harassment 67

Why Is Resisting Bullying and Harassment Important? 71

The Detrimental Effects of Workplace Bullying on Employees 71

Organizational Challenges That Accompany Workplace Bullying 71

A Notable Increase in Bullying Behavior 72

Key Research Studies 73

Explanatory Models of Workplace Bullying 73

Spillover Effects of Workplace Bullying 77

Phases of Bullying 78

Coping With Workplace Bullying 81

Resisting Workplace Bullying 81

Resisting Workplace Bullying and the Risk Negotiation Cycle 86

Attending 86

Sensemaking 88

Transforming 88

Maintaining 89

Conclusion 90

References 91

Unit 2 Managing Risk to Relationships

Chapter 5 Negotiating Workplace Relationships 93

Why Is Negotiating Workplace Relationships Important? 95

Key Research Studies 97

Managing Relationship Threats 97

Managing Deteriorating Workplace Friendships 99

Responding to Relational Wrongdoing 102

Managing Workplace Relationships and the Risk Negotiation Cycle 106

Attending 107

Sensemaking 109

Transforming 109

Maintaining 110

Conclusion 111

References 113

Chapter 6 Monitoring Organizational Romance 115

Why Is Monitoring Organizational Romance Important? 116

The Prevalence of Organizational Romance 116

Concerns Associated With Organizational Romance 118

The Possible Outcomes of Organizational Romance 118

Organizational Policies on Workplace Romance 120

Key Research Studies 121

Models of Workplace Romance 121

Power Dynamics in Organizational Romance 125

Workplace Romance and Sexual Harassment 126

Organizational Romance 128

Monitoring Organizational Romance and the Risk Negotiation Cycle 130

Attending 130

Sensemaking 132

Transforming 132

Maintaining 133

Conclusion 134

References 135

Unit 3 Managing Risk to the Organization

Chapter 7 Dealing With Difference 137

Why Is Dealing With Difference Important? 139

The Diversifying Workplace 139

The Benefits of Workplace Diversity 139

The Challenges of Workplace Diversity 141

Key Research Studies 142

Communication Forms 142

Privileged Discourse and Muted Voices 145

Cultural Diversity and Identification 149

Dimensions of Interaction in Culturally Diverse Workgroups 150

Dealing With Difference and the Risk Negotiation Cycle 153

Attending 153

Sensemaking 155

Transforming 156

Maintaining 156

Conclusion 157

References 159

Chapter 8 Expressing Dissent 161

Why Is Expressing Dissent Important? 163

Dealing With Organizational Constraints 163

Drawing Attention to Overlooked Issues 163

Exposing Unethical Behavior and Organizational Wrongdoing 164

Providing Corrective Feedback 165

Key Research Studies 165

Employee Responses to Dissatisfaction 165

A Model of Employee Dissent 166

Upward Dissent Expression 168

Practicing Circumvention 168

An Issue of Principle or a Matter of Personal Advantage 169

Expressing Dissent and the Risk Negotiation Cycle 173

Attending 173

Sensemaking 173

Transforming 175

Maintaining 175

Conclusion 176

References 178

Chapter 9 Proposing New Ideas 179

Why Is Proposing New Ideas Important? 180

Key Research Studies 183

Collections of Creatives 183

A Lesson From the Arts 184

Innovation Champions 186

Proposing New Ideas and the Risk Negotiation Cycle 189

Attending 191

Sensemaking 191

Transforming 192

Maintaining 193

Conclusion 193

References 196

Chapter 10 Responding to Difficult Team Members 197

Why Is Responding to Difficult Team Members Important? 198

The Prevalence of Teams 198

The Permeability of Teams 199

Mutual Accountability in Teams 200

Identification in Teams 201

Key Research Studies 202

The Characteristics of Difficult Team Members 202

Making Attributions About Poor Performance 203

The Importance of Roles 205

Responding to Poor-Performing Peers 205

Effective Communication Skills in Teams and Workgroups 208

Responding to a Difficult Team Member and the Risk Negotiation Cycle 209

Attending 209

Sensemaking 211

Transforming 212

Maintaining 213

Conclusion 214

References 215

Chapter 11 Conclusion: Risk and Next-Generation Challenges 217

Individual Risks 219

Frequent Job Changes 219

Obsolete Skills 221

Working 24-7 222

Relational Risks 223

Intergenerational Conflict 223

Intercultural Difference 225

Organizational Risks 226

The Temporary Workplace 226

The Virtual Workplace 227

Societal Risk 228

Risk Revisited 229

Attending 231

Sensemaking 232

Transforming 232

Maintaining 233

References 233

Index 235

About the Authors 257

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