The relevance of internal communication in contexts of organisational integration.

HARTMANN, Stefan. (2007). The relevance of internal communication in contexts of organisational integration. Doctoral, Sheffield Hallam University (United Kingdom)..

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This study has examined the relevance of internal communication in contexts of organisational integration ('merger communication'). Today, mergers and acquisitions represent a key means of growth. The fundamental impacts of mergers on the people within the affected organisations are, however, frequently underestimated. Many difficulties experienced in mergers appear to be the result of misguided communication founded on a lack of understanding of the underlying communication processes. Previous research and practice on merger communication may have relied too heavily on transmission-oriented approaches which insufficiently address the complexities of merger scenarios. The present study adopts the philosophical commitments associated with 'critical theory' and 'critical realism'. In methodological terms, a qualitative, interpretive approach was used for the research. The data analysis was split into two parts: the first part involved data collection and analysis using grounded theory. As a result a new theory of merger communication was induced. Primary data was obtained by interviewing 32 subjects who were involved or affected by merger integration. Subjects questioned had differing backgrounds, occupied various positions and gained experience in different organisations. The second part of the research involved a broadly-based literature review which, detached from grounded theory principles, served to corroborate the findings from the primary data analysis. The study found that merger communication involves reciprocal interaction processes. During these processes, fields of joint and socially constructed views are produced. Overall, the study advances communication theory which has been empirically tested in merger settings, i.e. there was an examination of the interplay between communication and organisational integration. As a result the field of cultural communication, a route within communication theory, has been furnished with an explanatory approach which extends current understanding of shared meaning relationships. The mergers and acquisitions theory on the other hand is confronted with the finding that an instrumental approach to communication is of limited use only. While a few academics in the area of mergers and acquisitions have regarded merger communication as involving the sharing of meanings none have developed this idea any further with an overarching model.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Thesis advisor - Bryant, James
Thesis advisor - Darwin, John
Additional Information: Thesis (Ph.D.)--Sheffield Hallam University (United Kingdom), 2007.
Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Sheffield Hallam Doctoral Theses
Depositing User: EPrints Services
Date Deposited: 10 Apr 2018 17:20
Last Modified: 26 Apr 2021 11:52

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