Organizational Behavior Communication

You have been hired as the department manager for Customer Service for the Superior Widget Corporation (SWC). SWC is a young organization (two years old), and is experiencing rapid growth pains. The CEO has determined that the Sales department, which had been responsible for sales and customer service, is heavily sales oriented to the detriment of customer service. To maintain SWC's rapid sales growth and ensure a standardized approach to addressing customer feedback and concerns, the CEO centralized the Customer Service Department. It is no longer merely a team within each sales region. The CEO implemented this change quickly, without feedback from affected departments. This change resulted in a number of positions being eliminated or downgraded within the regional sales departments, creating anxiety and strained relations within some parts of the organization. On the other hand, some departments have welcomed the change, and have expectations of improved communication and teamwork with the new Customer Service Department. In addition to this, you are also responsible for working in a matrixed style with other business units. You have regular meetings with the other SWC Department Managers to address and act upon cross-functional issues (e.g. customer order processing, resolving customer complaints in conjunction with the shipping division). You need to quickly assess your new organization and department and determine a plan of action.

Until recently, upper management has attempted to accomplish coordination of the department managers by using unscheduled e-mails and memoranda. The CEO has come to the realization that in order to foster cooperative problem solving among the managers, a different communication style will be needed. In an attempt to increase efficiency and accuracy, the CEO has asked you to identify two types or models of communication and explain how they would enhance a matrixed style organization.

Prepare a short presentation, with notes, to be given to the CEO.

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