Ina review of Glimcher Realty Trust case study, one can evaluate theimportance of communication within an organization, by evaluating thecompany CEO’s communication style to employees during difficultfinancial times. We review how CEO, Michael Glimcher usescommunication to retain morale and commitment among the employeesdespite the trying financial crisis facing the company.
Aftercarefully reviewing the financial state of the company, Glimcherdevelops a plan of action necessary to keep the company afloat.However, his decision to communicate his plans to his employees wascrucial to ensure that employees were aware of their role to meet theset objectives. Firstly, he was specific and clear on the objectivesand how the company was going to meet them. Glimcher’s publiccommunication to employees outlined that he was confident that thecompany would survive the financial crisis, which was meant to createassurance to employees whose livelihood depended on the company’sprosperity (Certo& Certo, 2013).He also points out the numerous challenges facing the company, how towork through them and their eventual contribution to the success ofthe company.
Glimcher’stone in communication was vocal and honest. He elaborated on thefinancial state of the company and what it meant for the employees.He noted that there was a probability that the company would beforced to sell off some of its properties to make ends meet, whichmeant that some of the employees could lose their jobs. Although suchinformation could create low morale, it was in the best interest ofthe company employees to know what was at stake and rally them tomake more sales. Finally, Glimcher’s communication also inspiredcommitment as he treated his employees with respect as opposed tousing a reprimanding tone which would not have been helpful in thiscase. He also led by example by also doing what he asked hisemployees to do. Therefore, Glimcher employed the ten commandments ofcommunication well, ensuring clarity, commitment and a motivatingattitude towards organizational goals.
AlthoughGlimcher’s communication to employees was well articulated, therewere several imminent micro and macro communication barriers. Inconsideration of barriers that may exist in Glimcher communicationstyle, micro communication involving interpersonal communication withemployees was not emphasized. Interpersonal communication helpsinspire personal confidence and develop trust between the managementand employees. It also encourages employees to seek clarity onobjectives and present ideas that may prove helpful towards thecompany’s goals. Encouragingconsultation between employees was also not encouraged.Assuch, employees may feel alone and insecure while conducting theirduties. On a macro communication level, Glimcher does not employdialogue which is vital in aligning personal agendas with those ofthe company. Miller(2006), observes that consideringemployees’ input towards planning company goals, allows the companyto utilize individual employee skill set at an optimum level bymatching their skill set to particular areas that would be moreproductive. Dialogue also facilitates queries and feedback regardingthe plans and objectives of the company. While it was also necessaryto inform the employees of the company’s plan to downsize, Glimcherdid not consider how the information would affect individualemployees. Such information may create fear of job loss amongemployees. The information should have followed up by interpersonalor group level of communication where each employee’s emotionalstate would have been evaluated and dealt with appropriately. Thiswould ensure that each employee is motivated in the right way toalleviate any fear and ensure productivity on their end.
Aclose review of Glimcher’s communication style shows that he usedan informal form of communication. Informal communication does notemploy well-known channels of communication that are predefined andplanned. In this case, Glimcher called for a state of the companymeeting that would involve all members of the company (Certoand Certo, 2013).Although a meeting is traditionally viewed as a formal communicationtrait, the state of the company meeting was not predefined rather itwas set in place to address a sudden crisis that was facing thecompany. Notably, in a formal communication style, discretion isusually maintained while information in informal communication can befreely shared among employees. Although Glimcher addresses the grimfinancial crisis facing the company and an outline of objective settowards the survival and eventual success of the company, theinformation was shared with employees to encourage personalinitiative. There was no intention of maintaining discretion on thematter as everyone in the company attended the meeting.
Itis also important to note that the information discussed onlyoutlined the goals and objectives of the company, but did notspecifically affect the company or departmental policy, which iscommon in formal communication where objectives are meant to affectcompany policies (Christensen& Cornelissen, 2010).In this case, Glimcher’s information gave a general overview ofwhat needed to be done while leaving room for personal initiativefrom employees to affect the changes. Additionally, as opposed to aformal communication style where information flows in a systematicpath to address specific issues, informal communication does notdirectly address specific issues and allows information presented, tostretch in different directions. However, formal communicationfollows a clear direction and is set towards meeting certainobjectives with proper information channels. With formalcommunication, a bureaucratic process is usually involved indelivering information, whether upwards to top management ordownwards to the staff members. In this case, Glimcher, the CEO ofthe company directly addresses the employees thus eliminating themiddle management.
Certo,S. C., & Certo, S. T. (2013). Modernmanagement: Concepts and skills.Pearson Higher Ed.
Christensen,L. T., & Cornelissen, J. (2010). Bridging corporate andorganizational communication: Review, development and a look to thefuture.ManagementCommunication Quarterly,0893318910390194.
Miller,K. (2006). Organizationalcommunication.Belmont, CA: Thomson/Wadsworth.