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Strategic Communication and Organizational Strategies

Strategic organizational communication is the development of systems of communication by which the management within an organization can control the flow and content of messages. Systems are implemented and sustained with incentives and control.

The organizational structure of the company in the case study was centralized with a totally autonomous managerial group that compensated the employees as they pleased. The only real reward that the management offered was the large annual employee bonus, and that was kept a secret all year. Long, grueling hours without vacation time were demanded by the management as well as respect for their decisions. Employees that did not fit this mold were not compensated as well as other employees were at the end of the year.

In this case study of Industry International, the changes in the rule-reward system that caused resistance amongst the employees were completely based on the low bonuses given at the end of the year. Because the employees worked very hard without vacation or any other reward, they relied on and were motivated by their annual bonus. When that bonus was no longer available in the typical large amounts, the workers did not feel like it was worth their hard work. The employees speculated about different reasons for the low bonuses; greedy management, unethical practices, or just a decline in business overall. They felt that it was no longer worth their hard work if they did not receive the bonuses that they had grown accustomed to.
Money was the one strategy being used to motivate these people. When the business was no longer as profitable and capable of providing those large employee bonuses, its employees were no longer as motivated or loyal to the company.

It is not difficult to see why this was a flawed system. The heavily centralized management provided their employees with only one incentive, only one reason to be loyal to the company. The bonus at the end of the year was a large monetary reward. The company’s inability to sustain that kind of bonus provision was inevitable. It also encouraged poor financial habits amongst the workers as the majority of their income came in one lump sum. This caused them to spend in anticipation of that money all year long, and when it didn’t arrive, they were left in debt and sometimes without homes.

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