Assignment Week #16 — Wrapping Up

The Social Network:

This was a great way to end a semester by having us, or at least me, watch a movie which I haven’t seen before and gave me a chance to view it for the first time. This class has been a great experience because I could watch some of the favorites and others which I have never seen before. Now going to the post itself, for me the word “Organizational Communication” means communication happening in an organization. In this movie, in my opinion, there is none. For example, just starting with when Mark gets the letter from the lawyer that they will be suing him for stealing the idea, he didn’t share it with Eduardo. Later, once he moves to California, he also doesn’t tell Eduardo about his involvement with Sean Parker and also hides things from Sean as well. Within the “upper management”, which at that moment consisted of Mark, Eduardo, and Sean if you want to include me, as well as other programmers who had little stake in the company, none of them communicated amongst each other. There was also no structure set up either to get the work done. There was also no direction or shared vision and everybody had different directions they wanted to see the company go in. Systems’ thinking simply says that in order for one individual to succeed, the team as a whole or all the members of an organization must succeed. In this model, we could see that this was not working. Mark created the site on its own and wasn’t getting others on board as far as what he wanted to do or where he wanted to take the company. Yes, there were some aspects where he would involve Eduardo, especially when he needed money to expand, but otherwise Eduardo had no idea what was going on. My view of the internet is that once you are online, nothing about you remains private or safe. People share what they want and write as they please. The communication is spread around the world with a simple click of a button. When an individual posts on Facebook, it can potentially be seen by everybody who has Facebook. The pictures, comments, personal information all are available with ease to anybody who may want it. This opens many doors to people who may want to cause harm. Although there are rules and laws prohibiting this, it still does not stop people from “stalking” or getting information on others and there is no way for anybody to stop that. Although Zuckerberg was creating a culture where people could say and write as they pleased online about whatever they pleased, it was still opening up doors to issues. One simple example was about his own ex-girlfriend who he blogged about and was read by her friends and was spread around campus.

End of Semester Assignments — Semester Reflection:

When I first started this course, I honestly did not know what to expect or what I could gain out of it, if anything. However, after these few months, I can say that this course has opened my eyes in various ways. As I look into the future and when I may be part of an organization, I will be able to look back and relate to some of these topics and maybe even help improve the environment. One of the things I learned included the several types of powers including reward, expert, legitimate, etc. Few other topics which were really interesting to me included identity and difference, difference between teams and networks, dialogues, Karl Weick’s sense-making model, and the five theories of leadership. Starting with the five theories of leadership which included trait leadership, leadership style, situational leadership, transformational leadership, and discursive leadership, it gave me a good insight to see that leadership could be natural or it could be bred it. However, in my opinion, a natural leader can transform their style depending on the situation whereas for an individual to whom leadership doesn’t come naturally, it could be tough to adjust in situations where it may need to changed. I feel that if I get a chance to go into a leadership position, it would come to me naturally rather than have to be taught to me. When I read Karl Weick’s model, I realized I do the same things many times. If I have a plan in mind which needs a lot of preparation, I sit there and use the three parts he has mentioned including enactment, selection, and retention. Obviously, when the situation differs, the process differs accordingly. But I think by reading and learning about this, it has brought more awareness to my actions. One of the ways I have been and will continue to use enactment, for example, would be when preparing for a presentation in front of a class or a department at work. I stand in front of a mirror and read out my notes and watch my movements and prepare accordingly. Also, going back to leadership, I would also say that now that I have learned various traits and theories, I am more aware of how I will use these if I become a leader and how other individuals will perceive me as a leader and how I would want them to perceive me. Before taking this class, I had a certain way of leading and did not think of how I was being reflected and if I was leading the way I would want to be lead. But now, it has brought more knowledge and tips to include communication, open mind, more discussions, and allow equal chances to all individuals present in the room. This class has also brought more respect in my eyes for all the leaders in all types of organizations and what they may have to deal with on an everyday basis which could include harassment and bullying. I knew that harassment was present but now realizing that bullying could take so many forms even in a workplace has made me more aware of my surroundings. Also, writing about it in a blog and reading others blogs has also opened my eyes to various ideas of how I could help my group/organization come over bullying and stop the issue. Suggestions such as trainings and private sessions were all great ideas and suggestions. Lastly, when we first started the topic of teams and networks, I felt that I knew what the differences were and this would be easy. However, as I read more and more into it and realizing what all it includes and how these models work, I got more confused. I wasn’t sure whether I was in a team if I was in an organization or was making a network? I researched a bit more and to some extent did get the understanding. As usual, you came back as a rescue by providing a new blog just on the topic of teams and networks which gave more in depth knowledge and understanding. For example, I then realized that teams have goal-oriented communication while networks have other types of communication including circle, wheel, chain, or all-channel communication. After learning so much this entire semester, I can FINALLY say I AM READY TO PASS THIS CLASS WITH AN A!!!! :) Go Organizational Communication.