International communication management in the latvian olympic committee
INTERNATIONAL COMMUNICATIONS OVERVIEW 6 1. Definition of communication and key theories of communication 6 1. Key elements of communication 6 1. Globalization and main objectives of communication 6 2. INTERCULTURAL ORGANIZATIONAL COMMUNICATION 7 2. International communication management in the Latvian Olympic Committee: Findings from the focus group interview 30 4. Results summary 30 CONCLUSIONS 31 RECOMMENDATIONS 32 APPENDICES 36 List of used literature and sources………………………………………………………. ……31 Appendixes………………………………………………………………………………. ……34 Introduction The studies on international communication gained traction in the 20th century with the advent of media and communication systems. Before this cutting edge innovations, it was really hard for one to imagine how they can pass a message from one corner of the world to the other. The explanations and practical research using both expert and focused group interviews can adequately provide a clear view of what is needed to effect communication in the global sphere.
It will also offer diverse perspectives on how the Olympic committee can make use of the existing international communication platforms to create cohesiveness among their members. Topicality: The management of the international communication is a very up-to-date and extremely significant topic nowadays. It is obvious without saying that communication surrounds everyone and everywhere, yet the international communication in the organization is an absolutely different perspective of the subject. The author finds this topic of high personal interest and global demand nowadays, thus she decided to research this issue on the example of the Latvian Olympic Committee, where she had accomplished her internship. I will also apply interview techniques in the Latvian Olympic committee organization to ascertain their views in the entire matters.
Most of the questions which will be answered are the qualitative questions which will provide an experience view of the workers and experts who have been able to apply this form of international communication. Focused group interviews will particularly entail all the workers drawn from various departments within the organization and majorly the communication department. The expert interviews will be conducted in a various officers of the experts of the international communication including directors of communications and sports within the company. Interviews are particularly important since one cannot be able to hide his true feelings and experience needed while answering the questions. Also, main objectives and globalization of communication will be discussed. Definition of communication and key theories of communication Communication can be defined as a two-way process that involves the participants not only exchanging information, feelings, ideas, but also the creation and sharing the meaning for reaching of mutual understanding.
The process of communication involves the expression of one self’s messages, thoughts, ideas using writing, signals, or speech. Communication can also be said to be the method used to bring information or ideas to the perception of other individuals. In a vast and important communication, there are inherent theories that help people to understand the whole process of communication. This is in contrast to traditional theory which is only oriented towards explaining or understanding society. People who apply the critical theory of communication usually challenge and question the convictions for what they are or what they appear to be. The theory is also concerned with questioning with what is right or wrong in society and taking steps to correct the wrongs and reaffirm the rights.
This theory is therefore, always concerned with inquiring into limitations and problems, the incoherence and contradictions, and the mistakes in how human beings operate in particular hierarchies or relations with one another, and within particular kinds of structures (Miller, 2005). The main aim of the critical theory of communication can be said to be correcting the vices in society and replacing them with positive qualities for the benefit of the society. This is usually the ideas or information the source wants or intends to communicate. Encoding Encoding involves assembling the message (thoughts, ideas, and information) into representative designs with the aims of enabling the receiver comprehends it efficiently (O'Sullivan, 1983). Communication can only be established if both the receiver and source of information understands the information in a similar way.
Great communicators are usually by default, great encoders. They have to know how to present their messages in ways in which their audiences can comprehend them easily. Good communicators usually take the receivers’ frames of reference and preconceptions into consideration. This includes factors like their moral conduct, their sense of humor, where there is a shared common ground, and how they will react. All these factors have effects on how the messages are decoded by the receivers. Feedback Feedback can be defined as the responses or reaction of the receivers towards the message received. The feedback is an important part of any communication process as it is the determinant of the success or failure of the communication process. To persuade Persuasion is the process of convincing people to get to do something that one wants or desires them to do (Hallahan, 2015).
This is usually used in many contexts for example when students try to convince their parents to pay for them a trip to a foreign country. Another common context where this happens is in the sales context. All salespersons should have a strong persuading power lest they fail to convince the potential customers to buy their products. All successful salespersons are always trying to convince their potential customers of the suitability of their products either through direct or subtle methods. The goal of the organization is delivered to the employees through communication via different channels. Upon receiving and decoding the message, the employees have to give a feedback to make the communication complete. In essence, organizations are run through the sending and receiving of messages and the better the messages are communicated, the more effective and effective the organization becomes.
It is safe to say that an organization that has efficient communication strategies translates to one that meets its objectives. There has been an array of studies on the importance of communication to the success of an organization. Effective communication is known to yield; greater employee satisfaction, increased levels of trust and commitment, increased productivity and quality products and services. Employees in an organization have high regard of the line manager and the better they handle themselves and their subordinates, the better the organization is perceived by the employees (Hargie, 2016). This shows that when effective communication exists between the managers and the subordinates in an organization, the chances of success are high. In this section, the discussion will be focused on the organizational communication, intergroup differences and international communication strategies in organizations with employees from different cultures.
Communication Model Noise The message is composed by the sender and put in symbols. People do not need to travel but rely on emails, telephones and videoconferencing to communicate. However, people who have close relationships prefer face-to-face communication for their own personal reasons. The deal focused market has, made suppliers and their partners to demand face-to-face meetings more than is deemed necessary (Gesteland, 2002). This is so because their deals are dependent on the good relationships that they have established. Significance of intercultural communication Many organizations are global in the current business world. What is said by one person is not what the person on the other end hears. The meaning of a message is greatly depended on the cultural context. In this respect, when cross-cultural communication occurs, the sender of a message does it in his/her context while the recipient gets and decodes it in a totally different cultural context.
The difference in cultural context is what is referred to as ‘noise’ during communication because it impedes good communication. Organizational communication As has been captured earlier, communication is an important item in the success of an organization. There is downward communication, upward communication and vertical communication. What these different models of communication entail is discussed in detail below. • Upward communication In this type of communication, messages are sent from people who have low ranks in the organization to people in high positions. An example is when a subordinate interacts with the manager on matters concerning the organization. • Downward communication This is where messages are send from people in senior positions to people in junior positions. This showed a gap between the views of the supervisors and the employees.
The second study was also conducted in the UK and it involved 46 CEOs – it was conducted by the Marketing Society in 2013. The participants identified a list of essential leadership skills at this senior level to be: communicating clearly, building the team around the leader, giving a clear sense of direction, earning rewards through building trust, listening with humility and acting with courage among other skills. Most of these skills had a direct relationship with communication. These implied that how the leader handled communication had a great impact in realization of the organization goals. In these respect, communicators are considered as the most important element. This element has two perspectives which are the leaders and the followers. Leadership has been neglected by many researchers in relation to communication in what Hargie (2016) terms as a surprising thing owing to the fact that it is an important factor in the success of the organization.
In terms of leadership, there is a disparity as far as gender is concerned with most people in leadership positions being male. This has to do with stereotypes that male are better leaders than females and if an organization has to show its strength, then it should have men dominating the leadership positions. According to Fortune Magazine CEOs in the range of 500 in the US are likely to be at least 6’2” taller than an average male American. This is proof that people in leadership positions should be taller compared to the average height in a particular organization. In so being, they are likely to be held in high regards by their subordinates which ensures a certain level of respect. The third future of leaders is physical attractiveness.
This is an aspect that is based on the maxim of physical attractiveness bias that considers people who are attractive to be credible, persuasive, attractive, popular, intelligent, and trustworthy among other likeable qualities. This can only be made possible if communication at all levels is effective and efficient so that members know what to do and the time they should be doing it. The third element of communication is the message. Messages in an organization are sent and received through five channels. There is interpersonal communication ( self talk and evaluation), upward communication, down ward communication, outward communication and horizontal communication. An effective message should be timely, accurate, relevant, clear and from a credible source. For instance, when a close friend makes an achievement in life, it is prudent that we congratulate them in person rather than calling or messaging them.
The channel used to communicate shows the level of importance and urgency of a message. Mostly, personal and urgent information is passed through face-to-face contact for timely and immediate feedback. The way leaders communicate with their subordinates will also show the relationship they hold. Mostly, employees will feel important if they are communicated to face to face by their bosses. Structural difference is brought up depending on the different roles employees play in an organization. Such include groups such as the managers and the subordinates, those working in the finance department, employees in the communication department, full time employees, contracted employees, those on internship and those that are on industrial attachment. Differences may also arise culturally depending on the backgrounds of employees.
Such things that bring about such are difference in nationality, religion, ethnicity, beliefs and social class. Stakeholders in organizations should be conscious of these factions if they have to effectively realize the company goals. This is so because most organizations are international and have members of staff that are from different cultures. According to Hambrick et al. there is evidence of many types of multinational groups. Such groups include, a group tasked with formulating an integrated European strategy and the management of a multinational joint venture. A multicultural team is made up of team members from different nationalities who work towards the realization of the goals of a company. His thoughts were supported by Terry and Callan (1998) who looked at the causes of conflicts among groups in organizations and established that competition over group status was a major contributing factor.
Communication between groups in an organization can escalate the level of identification. It can make members in an organization hold the firm in high regard or vice versa (Suzuki, 1998). There can also arise problems when the communication between supervisors and subordinate staff is not effective. Supervisor-Subordinate Communication Previous research on communication in organization has focused on how the subordinate staff communicates with their supervisors. This assertion reflects what organizational communication is all about. A supervisor will be judged depending on the relationship he has with the subordinate he is communicating with. Perceptual incongruence Like mentioned earlier, there is a high level of interaction between the supervisors and the support staff. However, studies have proved that there is a lack of agreement between the perceptions of each other, the work environment and themselves.
According to Berman and Hellweg (1989) this semantic information distance is brought about by the problems the two groups face at work like job duties and the skills they are thought to have. This can occur when a person does not understand the figures of speech in a particular language. In intercultural communication, there are a number of problems that can occur when one is translating a message. These problems are discussed below: • Lack of vocabulary equivalence, different languages lack words that can be translated directly according to Jandt (2013). • Lack of idiomatic equivalence, this arises because idioms vary from language to language and if they are translated directly, they lose their original meaning. • Lack of grammatical-syntactical equivalence, means that grammar varies from language to language.
Organizations should prepare their staff for international assignments and educate them about tolerance. This is because the contribution and evaluation of people is dependent on their culture and if not treated with caution, they are likely to develop mistrust and feel unappreciated. Schroll-Machl asserts that the contribution of members towards the realization of the organization goal is inclined to their cultural background. Owing to the diverse nature of organizations, if communication is interpreted differently, then the organization is likely not to realize its objectives. International communication strategy in organization This section is focused on the communication strategies that are established by international organizations. In order to develop a communication strategy, an organization is required to examine its objectives and goals. The strategy should outline how efficient communication can help attain the general goals of the organization.
Also, it should capture how it would attract the interest of potential partners and demonstrate the success of the activity the company is involved in. there should also be assurance of mutual understanding across the different cultures the organization is likely to serve. In the introduction of the strategy, the scope of the organization should be captures and its functions addressed. They include, international organizing meetings, provision of online communication, monitoring information disseminated by mass media and elaborating the message released to the public. However, there is a degree of stress put on digital strategies of communication due to the nature of the world today. Most people are on digital platforms and get access to information from these platforms. A digital strategy is depended on how an organization builds up an online presence.
The strategy should include an organization having a functional and efficient website. Basically, there should be a way in which the communication can be assessed in terms of the number of people it has reached. It is important to note that the communication strategy should also give ways in which people within the organization should communicate. In internal communication, the methods of communication include face to face communication which involves meetings. Telephone calls, emails, memos and letters. The mode of communication that has been proved to be most effective is the face-to-face communication. A communication strategy should consider all the forms of communication which include written, oral, visual, audio and electronic. The one that appeals most to people should be used dominantly.
Most importantly, the different strategies should be considerate of the cross culture environment of international organizations. This section discussed intercultural communication, organizational communication, intergroup differences and strategic communication in international organizations. The most important point derived is that without effective communication, an organization may fail to achieve its desired goals. Brief summary of the entire chapter, 2-3 sentences what next chapter will be about 3. INTERNATIONAL COMMUNICATION MANAGEMENT IN LATVIA Short description of what chapter will be about, how many subchapters will be here and the reasons why they are included (0,5-1 page) This chapter discusses communication management in Latvian Olympic committee. Different aspects of communication will be addressed such as the organizational communication process and how international communication is handled. It will contain two subchapters: Overview of the local organizational communication process and peculiarities of international communication on behalf of Latvian organizations.
Overview of the local organizational communication process Communication in this committee is aimed at structuring and maintaining the relationship between different stakeholders in the organization. Furthermore, the organization uses memos for internal communication to and this can be sent through electronic mail or be posted on the notice board. The staff within the organization interacts through these different forms towards the realization of the objectives of the firm. Communication in the organization is organized well to avoid cases of distortion of data. Upward communication especially is scrutinized to ensure that the subordinate staff does not report false data as has been a norm common in many organizations. The main objective of communication in the organization is to provide the employees with accurate data that is meant for the operation of the company.
The organization has a website that is ran by the media team where information about the organization can be obtained. Some of the information displayed here include the work that of the organization, the mission, the goals, the organizations partners and their sponsors. In addition to this, the organization has social media handles on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. However, these are not as detailed as the website but have regular activities in terms of posts. The posts average a regularity of 1 in 2-3 days – not satisfying but good enough to engage their audience. First, there is the internal communication which entails sharing of information within the organization. This is done through ways such as meetings, emails, internal memos and face-to-face interactions.
The other way is external communication which involves sharing of information outside the committee. Information can be shared with media houses, sponsors and partners of the committee. Such information is shared through forms such as, the official website, social media platforms, newsletters and brochures. The information displayed here includes the activities they are involved in, their partners and sponsors. The website can be accessed from anywhere around the world and in essence is a medium for international communication. Another way through which international communication happens is through physical meetings with other stakeholders. The organization has to have contact with Olympic committees from other nations to discuss matters that concern the events. For instance, the Latvian Olympic committee has been in contact with stakeholders from Sweden to assess the possibility of Stockholm and Sigulda hosting the 2026 winter Olympic Games.
The committee is aware of English being a lingua franca and in their recruitment and selection; it has been made as a condition. Latvian caters for local communication while English is used when dealing with the global audience and stakeholders. The communication department is tasked with dealing with different aspects of international communication. Such tasks include choosing the channel of communication, whether it should be public or private. Public communication is done through the website and the social platforms while private communication is done through emails or encrypted messages on the internet. They handle and neutralize propaganda that might be created against the organization. This involves both local and international image. As a requirement during selection, the PR specialist should have competence in both English and Latvian languages.
Another requirement is competence in cross cultural communication for the ability of appealing to diverse cultures associated with the committee. There are different approaches for international communication in the Latvian organizations. First, an overview of the communication process in the organization was carried out where the roles of different stakeholders in communication were established. Communication in the organization should satisfy each member to ensure a peaceful coexistence. On international communication, the organization has specialists like the PR officer who ensure that the good image of the organization is maintained. Chapter four will discuss the organizational structure of the committee and the functional divisions in depth. Also, how international communication is addressed in the organization will be highlighted. The committee comprises of 34 different national confederations of the Olympic sport.
In addition, it has elected members that are involved in management. Notably, the general body that oversees the Olympic activities is the general assembly. The organizational structure of the assembly is complex. At the top of management is the president with two vice-presidents serving directly under. General assembly It supervises the activities of the committee in overall. It is also responsible for organizing the Annual General Meeting. Executive Committee. It comprises of the president, two vice presidents, the general secretary and other members. Their task is to supervise the General Assembly. ” The goals of the committee as highlighted on the official website are (www. olympic. org, 2018); • Promote sports ethics and fair play; • Fight against cheating and doping; • Cooperate with public and private organizations to place sport at the service of mankind; • Manage the Olympic Movement in Latvia and to coordinate the work of the Latvian sports federations, whose respective sports and disciplines are included in the Olympic Games program; • Observe the principles of the Olympic Charter in its activities and to monitor their implementation in Latvia, to promote the development of culture and art in the field of sports; • Oppose all forms of commercial exploitation of sport and athletes; • Popularize the sports spirit and interest of the Latvian people (in sports), especially among young people; • Promote sports activities for people with special needs; • Promote Olympic education by developing and implementing educational and cultural programs related to the Olympic movement; • Cooperate with the International Olympic Academy, to support the Latvian Olympic Academy, to create an Olympic museum, to promote and support their development and activities; • Maintain its independence under conditions of any political, economic or religious pressure, if they are obstructed by the Olympic Charter; • Promote the organization of Olympic, World, European, regional and other international youth and adult sports competitions if organized in Latvia; • Protect athlete’s physical and psychological health; • Promote women in sport and in sports organizations; • Promote sport and competitions through the intermediary of national and international sports institutions worldwide; • Work in conjunction with other global and regional organizations dedicated to the promotion of international competitions.
These goals are what guide the committee in its activities. From these goals, it is known what is required from different stakeholders associated with the committee. The units include five divisions and five commissions that assist in management. The five divisions are general assembly, board of directors, executive committee, Olympic sports federation and the employees. They perform different roles which are aimed at achieving a common goal. On the other hand the five commissions are sport games commission, regional program, financial. Sport work organizing commission and legal committee. Lastly, there is the head of international cooperation programs. The role of the office holder includes working together with the international Olympic committee and committees from other countries to promote the values and principles of olympism.
From the main organizational structure are the five divisions that are mentioned earlier. In general, they work to ensure that the objectives of the international Olympic committee are met. The Latvian Olympic committee like aforementioned has five commissions and five divisions. There are two categories of the Olympic Games which are the summer Olympics and winter games. Winter Olympics comprises of sports such as World Curling, Hockey and Skiing. On the other hand, Summer Sports include Football, Badminton, Boxing, Athletics and Gymnastics. Athletes in the different categories have to be natures from a young age so that they can lift the name of the country high. Legal Commission The legal commission deals with matters that are concerned with the law. Basically, what is taught is that sports can be used as a career.
Regional Program Commission It is tasked with the role of planning and organizing events on behalf of the committee. They also organize events that are used to select athletes for Olympic Games. These activities range from swimming, boxing, football to skiing. The roles of the commission have been discussed in another section. However, these federations must be affiliated to the respective international federations. • Athlete representatives that are elected. The representatives must have taken part in Olympic Games at one point. However, a waiver to exempt some of the representative from this rule might be given upon request by the committee. The government or other authorities are prohibited from having members in the committee. The interview process may run into a great risk of misinterpretation and under-theorization of the findings.
The assumption which most of the people have in this kind of interview is that it can offer actual realities. Just like any other research method, it needs a solid understanding of the skills, theoretical background, and careful validations. The interview conducted in the Latvian Olympic Committee involved a senior communication director at the company who has experience spanning a large number of years. Other respondents are the leading communication experts working in the company. This research method is considered the best in communication methods research and other related fields. The people usually interviewed are well understood to have a particular involvement in a certain concrete situation (Merton, & Kendall, 1946). The hypothesis and the research question has already been identified by the researcher in the beginning and their significance analyzed.
The investigator is also required to have a research guide which is well set up indicating the hypothesis. The focus of this method is in the subjective experiences of the particular members of the group in their particular fields. How often do you get briefs on matters communication? 11. What are some of the communication standards need to be used by the committee? 12. Do you think it is effective and rewarding to use such standards? 13. Is it fair to indicate that international communication at the Latvian Olympic Committee is a difficult task? 14. Have you ever come across any challenges while communicating? 15. Cross-cultural adjustment: A theoretical perspective on social support. International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 12,183–204. Bisel, R. Messersmith, A. and Kelley, K. Cultural diversity in organizations: Theory, research, and practice.
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