Internal Communication as a key driver of employee engagement and organizational performance : a case study of LG Electronics, South Korea
Mmutle, Tsietsi Jeffrey
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This research stems out of the desire to uncover and learn the impact and influence of internal communication as a strategic function that enhances productivity, organisational growth, employee engagements and above all organisational success 1 . Internal communications is a body of knowledge that is gaining momentum throughout the world. It is a global discipline that organisations have adopted as their instrument to measure the effectiveness of their communication campaigns, programmes and strategies both internal and external. Internal communication has been forced to adjust to numerous changes in the workplace. Macleod and Clarke (2009) argue that good quality internal communication enhances engagement and emphasise that employees need clear communication from senior management to understand how their own roles correspond with the leadership vision. The overarching aim of this investigative study was to examine the influence of internal communication as a key driver of employee engagement and organisational performance. In doing so, the research study employed qualitative approach method to investigate the extent in which internal communication as a strategic function enhances employee engagement and promotes organisational performance. This qualitative exploratory study relied on the experiences, thoughts, behaviours, and the understanding of the research respondents to articulate their knowledge about the phenomenon under investigation; therefore data was collected by means of various processes, including semi-structured interviews, and focus group discussions. The study was carried out amongst employees of LG Electronics2 , Seoul in South Korea to establish the extent to which internal communication influences or drives employee engagement3. The study adopted content analysis as a well-tested method of data analysis to better understand the data collected. Through content analysis, thematic connections were made and data was categorised in different themes that emerged systematically from similar characteristics mentioned in the conversations with the respondents. Inferences were drawn from the similar characteristics and presented in the data analysis and interpretations chapter of the research study. The results revealed that a deep awareness of internal communication existed among the respondents of the study. They also revealed high levels of consciousness of factors that contribute immensely to internal communication as a strategic function that enhance engagement, organisational culture, goals and values. The results revealed that a strong sense of identification and ownership was given to employees as part of programmes that intensified employee's contributions, level of engagement and understanding of goals and culture of the organisation. The empirical findings further postulated that employees were incorporated into the dominant coalition of the organisation and were also regarded as change agents, through which their inputs and suggestions were valued and recognised. The empirical study also revealed that employees were engaged because of the organisational culture shared by the strong leadership and management philosophy; LG-way was implemented as a framework to guide open and transparent communication. The results indicated that there was no salary gap between males and females, employees were rewarded according to their performance targets and capabilities and were also encouraged through coaching to improve their targets where necessary for the successful growth of the organisation. Through the empirical findings, the study recommended that a well coordinated internal communication function which is aligned and guided by the fundamental principles of the organisation will produce rewarding results for the organisation. There is a greater need for the organisation to conduct an intensified research on the impact and contributions of proactive internal communication strategies. Such research will guide and direct the coordination and implementation of proper and relevant programmes to assist the organisation to be more engaged and embedded among employees. LG Electronics must also come to terms with the fact that internal stakeholders make or break the organisation. The organisation needs to treat all employees equally and monitor the value of employees in the organisational growth and success. Management needs to know that the internal stakeholders are important as they provide the foundation of the organisation as well as acting as the liaison between the organisation and the external stakeholders.
- Humanities