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The Significance of Communication in Managing Change in a Dynamic Environment

Importance of Effective Communication During Change

The purpose of this study is to investigate the significance of Communication for an organization in managing change in a dynamic environment, as well as whether or not communication is successful in a dynamic environment, and why that is or is not the case. Moreover, this study aims to clarify the difficulties arising from transferring face-to-face communication to online interaction, as well as the difficulties associated with handling online communication. In order to address the issues identified, its important to find out the strategies to be followed in order to overcome them. Additionally, it is essential for leaders of the organization to communicate and manage their relationships with teams and stakeholders when changes in communication processes occur.

Management has to make decisions on various issues that affect the smooth functioning of the organization in consultation with the business units where possible. Communication plays an important role in managing change. By giving Management and the author information in relevant areas, communication enables timely and accurate decision making. Additionally, to implement a plan in an organization effectively, it is imperative to consult and gather information. Data must come from various sources and relevant information must be gathered in order for the plan to be implemented, workers and members must be encouraged to participate in the plan as well as given feedback and direction.

Communication is one of the most important aspects of change management, and there is an extensive literature on it, including hundreds of journal articles. As a first step to gaining a thorough understanding of the subject, the author reviewed a few academic articles that discussed the importance of communication, such as Hasanaj (2017) and Elving (2014).

As outlined above, the literature review has been organized to better correspond with the structure of the author's research question; ‘What changes in communication processes have happened in an organisation as a result of Covid-19’s impact?’ and the research objectives are as follows:

To identify why effective communication is important for an organisation for managing change. 
The challenges and the barriers in handling of internet communication effectively.
What strategies are been appointed by organisation for efficient and effective online communication.
The role of organizational leaders and management in communicating with teams and stakeholders during Covid-19. 

The importance of effective communication during change. 
The act of communicating involves at least two people delivering, receiving, and reacting to messages. It is proving to be a crucial tool in social and business life (Hasanaj 2017). Several textbooks and journals have addressed organisational change. The failure of organisational change is still common despite all the attention and research. The failure of so many organizational change efforts is due to various reasons, including the organizational culture and the timing of the change effort. Communication during organisational change will be emphasized in this section. In addition, the model of planned organisational change demonstrates how important communication is. Changing the tasks of individual employees is a key element of organisational change, and communication about the change is a vital component of change efforts and strategies. A key goal of organizational communication should be to inform its employees about its policies and goals. Second, communication should establish an environment of community within an organization. As the organisation becomes more committed, its management gains greater trust, and it becomes more identifiable, its readiness for change increases (Elving, 2014).
Organizational change cannot be effectively implemented without effective communication. Inefficient communication can result in rumors and resistance to change. To overcome resistance to change, Kotter and Schlesinger suggested that informing people in advance could be part of the solution. Employees should be kept informed when the change is to take place, how it will be implemented, what to expect of them, how the change will affect them in the job, and how the company will sustain and motivate them to participate in the change (Hasanaj, 2017). Effective Communications are critical to the successful implementation of change because they are used to announce, explain or prepare people for change (Malek, 2012). 
Communication has two key aspects: building trust, and empowering employees, both of which are necessary to motivate employees to accept change. In order to avoid the impacts of poorly performing and expensive uncooperative employees during the change process, management should foster positive attitudes towards their work in employees. These tendencies include organisational commitment, job satisfaction, and work motivation (Acharya, 2012). Overall, The use of communication can result in reduced resistance, reduced uncertainty, and greater involvement. Change managers have been shown to be enabled to challenge embedded cultural and structural norms by effective communication at the organizational level. On the other hand, ineffective communication contributes significantly to organizational failures when it comes to change initiatives (Harkness, 2010). 

Challenges of Handling Online Communication

A common cause of uncertainty during change processes is the goal, process, and expected outcomes of the change, as well as the implications to the individual employee. Different employees may perceive the same situation differently. The ability to effectively communicate change is a means of managing uncertainty. When employees are uncertain during change processes, they may be adversely impacted by their own actions or the environment in which they are working. People might wonder if they will still be employed after the change, if the co-workers will remain the same after the change. And whether they can still perform their tasks in the same way as before (Acharya, 2012). As well as affecting feelings of uncertainty and job insecurity, organisational communication objectives themselves are more likely to influence feelings of uncertainty. Communication problems in this instance will make it difficult to effectively communicate about the organization's change which will leads to feelings of uncertainty (Elving, 2014). 

Its important for organisation to provide consistent, frequent, and diverse communication about the changes, through presentations, writing, video, training and intranets, etc. Communicate should happen as soon as possible any changes that have been made. In addition, one should make clear that he/she is in favor of instant communication, in case some details may change in the future. One could also hold off on communicating until he/she is completely sure about the decisions, goals, and progress, but this can be dangerous in effective change management (Heathfield, 2021).

Secondly, its critical to provide context, purpose, and need for the changes so people understand them. Creating a theoretical framework to underpin the change is called "building a memorable conceptual framework." The communication process should be proactive. The rumors will circulate around if the organisation didn’t communicate with the employees on time. Late reaction will cause tremendous damage to an organisation’s reputation as a result.  Facilitate networking between people both informally and formally so that ideas about change and change management can be shared (Heathfield, 2021).

Lastly, the organisation needs to train and equip virtual teams with the tools they need to effectively communicate (Pennestate, 2020). Zoom, Microsoft teams can be great alternative tools to replace face to face meetings and people can still see the facial expressions and clear messages getting across without confusion. 

Emails, social networking sites like Twitter, WhatsApp, Facebook, and Instagram and websites are among the digital communication channels and platforms. The purpose of this research here is to identify the barriers to and challenges to active message exchange. Communication via digital means is often affected by language barriers. Some audiences may have difficulties understanding the language used when conveying messages. Generally, organizations experience this problem when marketing to customers in different regions or nations (Rashedi, 2020).
Digital media can also be impeded by other semantic differences besides language differences. For example, sending ambiguous messages is one of these barriers. Despite understanding the language, the recipients may not understand the meaning of the text. Therefore, whenever a language is used, senders should keep in mind whether the recipient will understand it (Icrowdmarketing, 2020).

Strategies for Efficient and Effective Online Communication

Digital media communication is also hindered by the physical barrier. Technology makes it easier for people to communicate with recipients who are thousands of miles away. However, Physical barriers remain despite the removal of distance. For example, environment factors like time, place, and medium can cause a barrier. The lack of sufficient time can be a barrier when it comes to updating websites or responding to inquiries from customers and others. Digital media platforms can be barriers if issues with them prevent targeted audiences from effectively receiving a message. Furthermore, some of the targeted audiences might not have access to the hardware or internet connections necessary for accessing the digital media platforms. And when the intended recipients no longer have access to the digital media platform used by the sender or no longer use it, the place can be a barrier (Rashedi, 2020).

It is also difficult to convey information effectively through digital media due to emotional barriers. It is possible for recipients to misinterpret the information if they perceive the sender as possessing negative emotions. Many people are likely to respond to messages by making judgments rather than reading and understanding them. Without making use of vocal inflections, tone of voice, facial expressions, body language and other cues, meanings can easily be misinterpreted. And this will in turn make it hard to communicate effectively online (Icrowdmarketing, 2020). 

A vital part of people's wellbeing is communication. It is impossible for humans to survive without interacting with their environment. Communication facilitates the emergence of relationships within society. Well-being is affected by our relationships at work, at home, and at play. Having a bad relationship can cause pain, while having a good relationship can bring joy. Having close relationships with neighbors, friends, and family, and participating in social groups, improves people's sense of self-esteem, connection to their communities, and psychological and physical well-being (Leung, L et al., 2011).

The study showed that participants who were more likely to use the Internet had fewer communications with family members, a smaller social circle, and more depression and loneliness (Brutto et al., 2021). Time displacement is the first factor to consider. Furthermore, the Internet is displacing strong ties. The explanation says that people are spending more time engaging in social activities now because they spend more time on the Internet. Internet can be addictive and can cause people to disengage from their social circles and may leads to mental disease. However, the research also found that interpersonal communication constituted the most important mode of communication in the group. Thus, the Internet does not seem to displace people's traditional methods of communication. But the Internet can negatively impact a person's quality of life when used for interpersonal communication. Conversely, daily face-to-face contact with family or friends for 10 minutes or more improves quality of life (Leung, L et al., 2011).

Role of Organizational Leaders During Covid-19

As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, older adults suffer from diminished communicative skills, social isolation, and mental health problems, especially for those with hearing impairment (Brutto et al., 2021). 

Although digital communication may assist with sustaining interpersonal relationships and organizing everyday life during the COVID-19 pandemic, such communications and their advantages may not be available to everyone. Low Internet access quality and low Internet skills are associated with less Internet usage for communication and information. Higher levels of education, higher household income, being employed, and living in suburban areas were related to greater Internet skills, while older age and identifying as female were related to lower Internet skills (Nguyen, Hargittai and Marler, 2021).

Many old people can suffer from loneliness as they may have hearing problems and cant hear the voices during Zoom meeting, they may also find difficult to read the information that put on Zoom as they cant see clearly when their eyes are aging. this cause huge issues for elderly group to be able to communicate efficiently during pandemic time (Brutto et al., 2021).

Regardless of what organization you are with or what project you are working on, communications are key. It helps to set expectations early on in your project with your team and your stakeholders, which makes it easier to shield yourself from requests that are not related to the project. Just as a project plan, a communication plan also outlines the scope, the components, and the roles of the individual and collective parties will make work more productive (Financesonline, 2021).

In a traditional office or in an online environment, the team can communicate using a variety of channels, such as: Email, Videoconferencing, Apps like WhatsApp. one should consider the communication goal, your audience, and what you hope to achieve before deciding what channel to use. Its important to ensure the channels that have chosen in ways that are accessible and simple to understand when communicating. One needs to follow Instructions for accessing the meeting, such as how to download a certain app, may need to be provided to everyone (Ricard, 2020).

However, Email has acquired something of a bad rep over the years due to the same criticism that gets leveled against a lot of technological platforms: that when you communicate via email, you lack the extra sensory cues provided by body language and tone of voice in face-to-face interactions. On another hand, communicating on a professional level via email is an efficient method to communicate with colleagues, so long as it doesn't take them away from other tasks (Perryer, 2018). When information or messages are not received on time, opportunities are missed and confusion occurs. With today's communication software and collaboration platforms, there is no reason why people cannot communicate clearly and efficiently. With two-way instant messaging, phone calls, and video conferencing, real-time updates and instant collaboration drive productivity and efficiency. This allows team members to keep up with project progress. In addition to being able to quickly address issues, instant communication allows you to skip the team hierarchy or not wait for the next meeting. By establishing a real-time communication strategy, the team will be able to respond and decide right away what to do when unexpected problems arise. This has resulted in a more responsive and agile team capable of dealing with and resolving unforeseen issues (Financesonline, 2021). 

Barriers to Effective Communication

Businesses in all industries rely heavily on social media nowadays. Among other reasons, social networking provides businesses with a platform to interact freely with their clients. Since most businesses are trying to reach as many customers as possible, social media allows them to gain access to customers in different demographics. Social media platforms allow businesses to attract new clients, and form long-term relationships with them that benefit both parties (Social Media Specialist, 2014). Engagement with customers can be achieved most effectively through social media, Using the online community, members can interact easily with each other and share their views, as well as ask questions personalized to their viewpoints (Bisen, 2019).

The effectiveness of social media communication, however, is a crucial element of social media success. In the digital age we are living in, many organisations use the digital platforms such as LinkedIn and Facebook to grow their influences, by doing so will attract people to follow them and encourage people to know more about their news and products. People's perceptions of your business are influenced by how you communicate on social media. Therefore, by communicate well on social media can also increases organizations’ reputations (Social media specialist, 2014). by respond to customer grievances directly, monitor negative comments, and remove them in a positive manner without any cost (Bisen, 2019). In addition, there will also be enhanced interaction by enabling the sharing of results, best practices, and other information. When employees are involved in the daily operations, they are more motivated to be engaged (Bacha, 2018).

Digital communication comes with the challenge of people being constantly online. Communications are frequent and continuous thanks to many communication platforms, such as internal workplace networks, Messenger, Twitter, e-mail, and Linked in. Business partners or colleagues who work in different time zones should not be hindered by digital communication, as it should be an aid to getting work done instead of getting in the way. This makes it challenging to switch off the communication completely. 
Managing the online workload is another challenge facing digital communication. With so many digital platforms, it is hard for employers and employees to figure out what matters. In order for companies to have a positive impact on their internal and external environments, they must have a strong digital presence, but they don't know how to achieve that, and they could suffer negative consequences if they don't get it right (Bacha, 2018). 


As a result of the Coronavirus, uncertainty, stress, and anxiety have increased, and people have been experiencing tunnel vision, focusing only on the present rather than looking to the future. An increased desire for transparency, guidance, and making sense of what happened is linked to a crisis when information is inaccessible or inconsistent, and when people are uncertain about what they know. During times such as these, leaders' words and actions are crucial for keeping people safe, dealing with their emotional challenges, and finally putting their experiences into context and drawing meaning from them. But a conclusion may be difficult to find, as this crisis evolves from a life-or-death issue involving public health and workplace safety to existential issues such as business continuity, job losses, and radical new ways of working. Despite some seeking meaning in the crisis and transitioning into the "next normal," others may not be ready for hope as they face growing uncertainty and worry about the future. As Covid-19 unfolds, leaders need to face the complicated challenges that can't be easily resolved (Mendy, A et al., 2020).

Researchers found that in high-performing organizations, managers gained employee trust through their awareness and concern for employee issues. Employee involvement was significantly higher where managers were more transparent about their goals and recognized their employees' performance more effectively. On the other hand, Employees will pay more attention to management's behavior than to the words being spoken. Does senior management provide feedback to their employees in a two-way process? If not, It would be difficult to develop a successful communications plan if management do not get constructive feedback (Harkness, 2010).
It has been frequently emphasized that leadership plays an important role in supporting and valuing the communication function in an organization. In the context of an organization, stakeholder integration means the incorporation of all functions who are responsible for cultivating relationships with internal and external stakeholders (Einwiller, S., Boenigk, M., 2011). According to Reid (2005), a company cannot integrate internally unless it is integrated externally.

A decision-making process for analyzing, planning, organizing, implementing, and evaluating a company's communication with its various stakeholders, based on communication objectives matched with corporate strategy and using instruments which are matched in terms of content, form, and timing. Achieving ICM requires leadership support as well as a differentiation of the four angles of integration - stakeholder, process, and executional - which all lead to effective communication (Einwiller, S., Boenigk, M., 2011).
As a consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic, digital channels have become even more important. To effectively engage their stakeholders from a distance, organizations had to pivot quickly. An organization's customers, employees, partners, shareholders and communities have significantly more communication channels as a result of the growing digital content ecosystem. Incorporating digital and traditional channels into a comprehensive communication strategy helps businesses build and sustain trust with audiences and provide positive brand experiences (Beehive, 2020). 

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