Social media and new forms of communicative work
Published inJYU dissertations
© The Author & University of Jyväskylä
Advances in communication technology have had fast and fundamental impacts on human behavior and organizational functioning. In light of the resultant communicatization of working life, organizations are becoming increasingly dependent on their members' communicative activity and ability. Seeing organizations as dynamic systems consisting of multiple interrelated components, which together contribute to the organizational representation, foregrounds the need to understand the distribution of communicative work as systemic change. Within the field of corporate communication, this dissertation focuses on the communicatization of working life and the subsequent distribution of communicative work within a corporate communication system. Overall, the dissertation draws attention to a shift in communication management research from a focus on managing communications as content and symbols, to managing organizational members who communicate, and asks how corporate communication as a management system is changing in relation to the communicatization of working life. The dissertation utilizes a mixed methods approach to explore the meanings ascribed to change by organizational members, both managers and employees. The managerial cognitions towards the distribution of communicative work are discussed through managerial expectations and valued managerial practices. Relatedly, employees' cognitions are examined by studying their beliefs regarding communicative roles and social media communication self-efficacy. Taken together, the understanding of these views, and the mechanism affecting how they are formed and how they affect employee behavior, contributes to understanding the distribution of communicative work as a systemic change. An overarching summary and five research articles comprise the dissertation. Two of the articles (sub-studies I and II) discuss the conceptual foundations of the phenomenon and explore employees' communicative role and competence in communication systems related to organizational representation. The third article (sub-study III) is an empirical, qualitative study (n=23) focusing on the management of employees' communication behavior in six Finnish organizations operating in the professional service sector. The study identifies three management approaches in use and categorizes enabling and motivating processes that are used in engaging employees in work-related social media use. The last two articles (sub-studies IV and V) are quantitative studies (n=1,179) aimed at increasing understanding of employees' perceptions of their communicative role and ability, the mechanisms through which these perceptions are formed, and how they affect employees' actual communication behavior. Based on the results of the sub-studies, I propose a conceptualization of communicative work, and discuss changes in the cognitions of management and employees in relation to work-related social media use. In addition to the main thesis that corporate communication is undergoing a change at the systems level and that communicative work is becoming increasingly distributed within organizations, I posit that 1) Communicative action and ability have increased their significance in contemporary work environments; 2) Communicative work is contextual and purposeful in nature and many knowledge workers do not feel confident about their abilities to take on these new work roles; and 3) Managing corporate communications includes a new sub-area that deals with managing communicative human resources. The practical value of the dissertation relates to advancing understanding of how communicative action is embedded into contemporary knowledge work, how corporate communication is changing, and – perhaps more importantly – how it should be changed in the future to enhance the positive aspects of this development, and to mitigate the negative aspects through managerial work and public policy. ...
- Artikkeli I: Pekkala, K., Valentini, C. & Luoma‐aho, V. Communication competence as a precondition for communication behavior – tracing the history of communication competence of organizational advocates. Accepted for publication..
- Artikkeli II: Pekkala, K. (2018). Employees constituting corporate voice as sensemakers and sensegivers. Conference paper presented at the 68th Annual International Communication Association (ICA) Conference, Prague, Czech Republic, May 2018.
- Artikkeli III: Pekkala, K. (2020). Managing the communicative organization : a qualitative analysis of knowledge-intensive companies. Corporate Communications, 25(3), 551-571. DOI: 10.1108/ccij-02-2020-0040 . JYX: jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/73642
- Artikkeli IV: Pekkala, K. & van Zoonen, W. Is it my job or not? Employees’ perceptions of their communicative role, its antecedents and relationship to work-related communication in social media. Submitted manuscript.
- Artikkeli V: Pekkala, K., & van Zoonen, W. (2021). Work-Related Social Media Use : The Mediating Role of Social Media Communication Self-Efficacy. European Management Journal, In Press. DOI: 10.1016/j.emj.2021.03.004
MetadataShow full item record
Showing items with similar title or keywords.
What's in it for me and you? : Exploring managerial perceptions of employees' work-related social media use Pekkala, Kaisa; Auvinen, Tommi; Sajasalo, Pasi; Valentini, Chiara (Emerald, 2022)Purpose -- This study focuses on managers' perceptions of employees' communicative role in social media, and explores the changes in the contractual nature of employment relations in mediatized workplaces in which the ...
Pekkala, Kaisa; van Zoonen, Ward (Elsevier, 2022)Social media use has become an indispensable part of knowledge work. Employees posting work-related content on social media are considered credible sources of information and have significant importance for how stakeholders, ...
van Zoonen, Ward; Sivunen, Anu (Sage Publications, 2023)This study presents an analysis of the extent to which enterprise social media (ESM) use enhances visibility of content (message transparency) and connections (network translucence) in organizations, and how this affects ...
Ihanainen-Rokio, Outi (University of Jyväskylä, 2014)
Benefits and drawbacks of communication visibility : from vicarious learning and supplemental work to knowledge reuse and overload van Zoonen, Ward; Sivunen, Anu; Rice, Ronald E. (Emerald, 2022)Purpose This study aims to examine some of the benefits and drawbacks of communication visibility. Specifically, building on communication visibility theory, the authors study how and why message transparency and network ...