TITLE

ORGANIZATIONAL STORIES: ONE MEANS OF MOVING THE INFORMAL ORGANIZATION DURING CHANGE EFFORTS

AUTHOR(S)
McConkie, Mark L.; Boss, R. Wayne
PUB. DATE
June 1986
SOURCE
Public Administration Quarterly;Summer86, Vol. 10 Issue 2, p189
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
This article examines data from the public sector and data which deal with organizational stories as a means of moving the information organization during change efforts. Organizational stories can serve as effective means of behavior reinforcement. Because such stories provided a safe, shared and commonly accepted image, they at the same time made it easy for some employees to speak about things which they otherwise might not have discussed. Sometimes the nuances are subtle but the context of the story makes them a little easier to decipher. Meanings always has a context. However, for all the strengths associated with the use of stories, they are not without their dangers. For one thing, stories can be put to manipulative and thus destructive ends. Like parables, stories are sufficiently vague that they become amenable to different interpretations. While such ambiguity can be helpful, it also has confusing dimensions. Because of their inherent vagueness, stories can promote miscommunication to the point of reducing the willingness of people to believe those whose interpretations differ from their own, even when dealing with the same phenomena. Anthropologists, psychiatrists, psychologists, counselors and others often use stories because they are a rich data source.
ACCESSION #
7163618

 

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