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Visioner och verkligheter : Kommunikationen om företagets strategi / Visions and realities : A case study of communication on corporate strategy

  • Johansson, Catrin
Publication Date
Jan 01, 2003
DiVA - Academic Archive On-line
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The starting point for this study is the question of why organizational visions are often interpreted by employees as unintelligible and insignificant. The knowledge gap in this area makes the study of communication about vision and goals both urgent and interesting. Accordingly, the purpose is to advance knowledge on communication processes in organizations through description and analysis of communication about strategy, encompassing vision, strategic objectives and common values, in a company. A case study design was chosen and a longitudinal qualitative study was conducted in the company, from April 1998 to January 2000. A combination of methods were used, including participant observation, discourse analysis and interviews. Communication about the strategy followed a typical top-down model, starting on group level and ending on department level. In this process, Balanced Scorecard was used as a tool to communicate the strategy. It was concluded that visions formulated by top managers met different realities constructed by managers at lower levels in the company. Managers’ attitudes, knowledge and interpretations were important individual factors that influenced communication about the strategy. Employees did not have the same detailed knowledge of the strategy as the managers, nor were they given the same opportunities to obtain it. The discourse analysis reveals power structures, conflicts, individual attitudes and perspectives. The study thus results in a deep understanding of communication problems in the organization.

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