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Abstract

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Leading with Presence: Fundamental Tools and Insights for Impactful, Engaging Leadership
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78714-599-3

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Article
Publication date: 17 August 2012

Henning Bang

The purpose of this paper is to explore why executives participating in a top management team meeting avoid speaking up when they experience the goal as unclear or the…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore why executives participating in a top management team meeting avoid speaking up when they experience the goal as unclear or the discussion as wandering off track.

Design/methodology/approach

A total of 21 executives (CEOs and level 2 managers) from seven top management teams were interviewed, and the interviews analyzed according to the principles of Grounded Theory.

Findings

The executives’ silence was primarily governed by a core belief that to speak up about miscommunication is a negative act, which will probably elicit undesirable consequences. This assumption was reinforced by how the executives perceived themselves, other persons and relationships in the group, group norms, and the issue discussed in the meeting. In addition, three other basic beliefs prevented the level 2 managers from speaking up: “We have no tradition for speaking up in this group”, “It's futile to speak up”, and “It's not part of my role to speak up in this group”.

Research limitations/implications

The data were collected from executives representing only seven top management teams from the public sector in Norway, limiting the generalizability of the findings. Future research should increase the number and types of top management teams from which informants are drawn.

Practical implications

Executives should be aware of how their beliefs and perceptions prevent them from voicing their concerns when experiencing miscommunication during the TMT meeting, and how remaining silent in these matters represents an important barrier to team effectiveness in the meetings.

Originality/value

The study shows that even among executives at the top of the organizational hierarchy, people refrain from speaking up when experiencing miscommunication, and that there are more reasons for not voicing concerns than fear of consequences and feelings of futility.

Details

Qualitative Research in Organizations and Management: An International Journal, vol. 7 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1746-5648

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Article
Publication date: 3 September 2018

Jie Li, Qiaozhuan Liang, Zhenzhen Zhang and Xiao Wang

The purpose of this paper is to find how leader humility affects employees’ constructive voice behavior toward supervisor (speaking up) and coworkers (speaking out) from…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to find how leader humility affects employees’ constructive voice behavior toward supervisor (speaking up) and coworkers (speaking out) from an identification-based perspective, and seeks to verify the effectiveness of leader humility in the Chinese context.

Design/methodology/approach

Data were collected from 325 employees in four Chinese companies with two phases. In the first phase, the participants were asked to report the leader humility, their identification of their relations with the supervisor, and their identification with their organization. In the second phase, they were asked to report their voice behaviors toward their supervisors and coworkers.

Findings

The results indicate that leader humility strongly predicts both employees’ voice behaviors of speaking up and speaking out. Results further suggest that relational identification with the supervisor explains why leader humility promotes employees speaking up, while organizational identification explains why leader humility promotes employees speaking up and speaking out.

Practical implications

Managers with humility can successfully shape employees’ relational and organizational identifications, which in turn encourage their voice behaviors toward supervisors and coworkers. Hence, behaving humbly in working places could be an effective way for managers to promote organizational cohesion and creativity.

Originality/value

Although leader humility attracts much attention in both academia and practice, researchers have been primarily focusing on conceptual development and measurement issues, and empirical studies are rare. This is the first research connecting leader humility and employee proactive behaviors. Moreover, it takes an in-depth analysis of the constructive voice behaviors by differentiating them based on their targets.

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International Journal of Manpower, vol. 39 no. 6
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0143-7720

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Book part
Publication date: 24 July 2020

Soo-Hoon Lee, Thomas W. Lee and Phillip H. Phan

Workplace voice is well-established and encompasses behaviors such as prosocial voice, informal complaints, grievance filing, and whistleblowing, and it focuses on…

Abstract

Workplace voice is well-established and encompasses behaviors such as prosocial voice, informal complaints, grievance filing, and whistleblowing, and it focuses on interactions between the employee and supervisor or the employee and the organizational collective. In contrast, our chapter focuses on employee prosocial advocacy voice (PAV), which the authors define as prosocial voice behaviors aimed at preventing harm or promoting constructive changes by advocating on behalf of others. In the context of a healthcare organization, low quality and unsafe patient care are salient and objectionable states in which voice can motivate actions on behalf of the patient to improve information exchanges, governance, and outreach activities for safer outcomes. The authors draw from the theory and research on responsibility to intersect with theories on information processing, accountability, and stakeholders that operate through voice between the employee-patient, employee-coworker, and employee-profession, respectively, to propose a model of PAV in patient-centered healthcare. The authors complete the model by suggesting intervening influences and barriers to PAV that may affect patient-centered outcomes.

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Research in Personnel and Human Resources Management
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-80043-076-1

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Book part
Publication date: 10 June 2015

Kathy L. Look Howery

This chapter presents an exploration of the phenomenon of speaking with, or perhaps better stated “through,” a device. Autobiographical works and other published accounts…

Abstract

This chapter presents an exploration of the phenomenon of speaking with, or perhaps better stated “through,” a device. Autobiographical works and other published accounts of perceptions of Speech-Generating Devices (SGDs) by persons who have used them are reviewed. The bulk of the chapter focuses on insights gathered from research into the lived experiences of young people who use SGDs. Emerging themes focus on what is “said” by a person who cannot speak, how SGDs announce one’s being in the word, the challenge of one’s words not being one’s own, and the constant sense of being out of time. Reflections on these themes provide insights for practice in the fields of speech language pathology, education, and rehabilitation engineering. The importance of further qualitative inquiry as a method to gather and listen to the voices and experiences of these often unheard individuals is stressed.

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Efficacy of Assistive Technology Interventions
Type: Book
ISBN: 978-1-78441-641-6

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Article
Publication date: 6 June 2016

Sean Donovan, Michelle O'Sullivan, Elaine Doyle and John Garvey

The purpose of this paper is to present an exploratory study of employee voice and silence in international auditing firms. The authors examine two key questions: what is…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to present an exploratory study of employee voice and silence in international auditing firms. The authors examine two key questions: what is the propensity of employees in training to speak up on workplace problems and how would management react to employees in training speaking up on workplace problems?

Design/methodology/approach

The authors compare and contrast the views of employees on training contracts with management including partners. Semi-structured interviews were carried out with eight managers/partners and 20 employees working in six large auditing firms in Ireland.

Findings

The authors find that employees on training contracts have a high propensity to remain silent on workplace problems. Quiescent and acquiescent forms of silence were evident. Management expressed willingness to act on employee voice on workplace problems concerning business improvements and employee performance but were very resistant to voice in regard to a change in working conditions or a managers’ performance. Employees and management couched employee voice in terms of technical knowledge exchange rather than being associated with employee dissatisfaction or having a say in decision making.

Originality/value

The authors highlight how new professional employees are socialised into understanding that employee voice is not a democratic right and the paper provides insight on the important role of partners as owner/managers in perpetuating employee silence. Previous research on owner/managers has tended to focus on small businesses while the auditing firms in this study have large numbers of employees.

Details

Employee Relations, vol. 38 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0142-5455

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Article
Publication date: 7 September 2015

Karim Sadeghi and Jack C. Richards

Mastery of spoken English is a priority for many learners of English in Iran. Opportunities to acquire spoken English through the public school system are very limited…

Abstract

Purpose

Mastery of spoken English is a priority for many learners of English in Iran. Opportunities to acquire spoken English through the public school system are very limited, hence many students enroll in “conversation” courses in private institutes. The purpose of this paper is to report a study of how institute teachers address the teaching of spoken English.

Design/methodology/approach

Eighty-nine teachers completed a questionnaire on how they teach spoken English. The information was supplemented with interviews and classroom observation.

Findings

Results suggest that institute courses reflect a poor understanding of the nature of spoken interaction, which is reflected in speaking courses that are unfocused and that do not address key aspects of conversational interaction.

Practical implications

Suggestions are given for a re-examination of the differences between “conversation” and “discussion” in spoken English classes as the basis for designing spoken English classes and materials, as well as for the use of out-of-class learning opportunities to enhance the learning of spoken English in Iran and elsewhere.

Originality/value

This paper is based on the authors’ original research, and the authors believe this is the first study of its kind in the Iranian context.

Details

English Teaching: Practice & Critique, vol. 14 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1175-8708

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 17 September 2019

Vibeke Thøis Madsen and Winni Johansen

The purpose of this paper is to explore the discursive tactics that employees use when they speak up on internal social media (ISM) to gain support for their cause, and…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to explore the discursive tactics that employees use when they speak up on internal social media (ISM) to gain support for their cause, and how this can develop into a “spiral of voice” when organizational members interact with each other on ISM.

Design/methodology/approach

The study is based on screenshots of four months of coworker communication on ISM in a Danish bank and on semi-structured interviews with 24 employees.

Findings

Employees succeeded in speaking up and gaining support on ISM by using eight different discursive tactics. These tactics helped move organizational issues from an operational to a strategic level, thus making the issues relevant for management as well as gaining the support of other coworkers. The visibility and persistence of communication on ISM forced managers to react.

Research limitations/implications

Further research should investigate whether similar tactics and reactions occur in organizations with a less open communication culture where it might be less safe for employees to speak up.

Practical implications

Organizations need to be aware of the dynamics of the “spiral of voice” and of the way in which the visibility and persistence of communication on ISM forces managers to handle organizational issues.

Originality/value

This study is the first to explore what happens when employees speak up on ISM and to propose the concept of “a spiral of voice” as an extension of the theory of “the spiral of silence” (Noelle-Neumann, 1974).

Details

Journal of Communication Management, vol. 23 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1363-254X

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Article
Publication date: 1 February 1977

Lyndon Jones

IBM, one of the best‐managed organisations in the world, has pioneered a very useful technique called Speak Up! Basically, Speak Up! is designed both to improve upward

Abstract

IBM, one of the best‐managed organisations in the world, has pioneered a very useful technique called Speak Up! Basically, Speak Up! is designed both to improve upward communication and to supplement other employee communication efforts. In detail the objectives of the programme are to:

Details

Education + Training, vol. 19 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0040-0912

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Article
Publication date: 19 November 2018

Sriji Edakkat Subhakaran and Lata Dyaram

Despite the increasing prominence of employee voice in organizational innovation and productivity, employees continue to struggle to influence matters that affect them at…

Abstract

Purpose

Despite the increasing prominence of employee voice in organizational innovation and productivity, employees continue to struggle to influence matters that affect them at work. The purpose of this paper is to model work group context and manager behavior as the predictors of employee upward voice. Further, a mediating role of employee psychological safety is examined in this link.

Design/methodology/approach

With data from 575 employees representing various technology firms in India, the authors test the hypothesized relationships using covariance-based structural equation modeling.

Findings

Results indicate coworkers upward voice and manager pro-voice behavior to significantly impact employee upward voice with a mediating impact of psychological safety. This implies that perceived psychological safety plays a significant role in explaining the impact, coworkers and manager behavior would have on regulating employee upward voice.

Originality/value

This study contributes to the employee voice literature from an Indian context, where upward communication is culturally discouraged.

Details

International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management, vol. 67 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-0401

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