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Authentic enterprise, organization-employee relationship, and employee-generated managerial assets

Yeunjae Lee (Brian Lamb School of Communication, Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana, USA)
Jeong-Nam Kim (University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma, USA)

Journal of Communication Management

ISSN: 1363-254X

Article publication date: 7 August 2017



The purpose of this paper is to examine the impacts of perceived authenticity of organizational behaviors and types of organization-employee relationship (i.e. communal and exchange relationship) on intangible assets of organizations generated by employees’ communicative behaviors (ECBs) (e.g. megaphoning, scouting).


A web-based survey was conducted with full-time 528 employees working in medium- and large-sized companies in the USA.


Results showed that an organization’s authentic behaviors are positively related with employees’ perceived communal relationships, but not with exchange relationships. However, both communal and exchange relationships turned out to increase ECBs: positive megaphoning, negative megaphoning, and scouting. The existence of both communal and exchange relationships was more significant than having only communal relationships in terms of encouraging employees’ active communicative actions.

Research limitations/implications

By building links between employees’ communicative actions and its antecedents, perceived authenticity, types of relationship; this study contributed to the body of knowledge on exchange and communal relationship in the context of employee communication and extended the understanding of motivations of ECBs.

Practical implications

The findings suggest that employees’ communicative actions are highly facilitated by organizations’ authentic behavioral efforts and perceived relationship. To encourage employees’ information seeking and sharing behaviors, for organizational effectiveness, organizations should behave in authentic ways – be trustful, transparent, and consistent – and build both communal and exchange relationship.


This study first attempted to demonstrate the impacts of both communal and exchange relationships for organizations empirically in internal communication and relationship building practices.



Lee, Y. and Kim, J.-N. (2017), "Authentic enterprise, organization-employee relationship, and employee-generated managerial assets", Journal of Communication Management, Vol. 21 No. 3, pp. 236-253.



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