Trust repair in times of crisis: the influence of stealing thunder and culture on employees’ evaluation of organizational trustworthiness, emotions, and willingness to forgive

Aviankoi, Erna (2013) Trust repair in times of crisis: the influence of stealing thunder and culture on employees’ evaluation of organizational trustworthiness, emotions, and willingness to forgive.

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Abstract:This study explored how ‘stealing thunder may affect the evaluation of organizational trustworthiness, emotions, and willingness to forgive across cultures during an organizational crisis’. The primary goal of this study was to explore whether an employee’s cultural background might have an impact on the effectiveness of trust repair strategies. By studying the factor of culture, a clear understanding is gained of how employees might respond to organizational crises which are intentionally caused by mismanagement. There was a gap regarding the behaviors of internal stakeholders during and/or after an organizational crisis caused by mismanagement. Many studies focus on the repair of organizational trust after a crisis, however their focus was on the perspectives of external stakeholders (i.e., consumers, investors). Therefore, this research project aimed at bridging this gap. The present study also focused on the interaction between national cultures and stealing thunder (as a crisis communication strategy), and how these together might influence employees’ evaluation of organizational trustworthiness, their emotions and willingness to forgive within the corporate trust repair process. Stealing thunder and its opponent thunder were used as scenarios for a 2 x 2 between subjects experiment. Two separate groups of employees (Surinamese and Dutch) were consulted. The research had a broad perspective, therefore, respondents were randomly recruited among Dutch and Surinamese citizens in general. Subsequently, various independent sample t-test and multivariate analyses of variance (MANOVA) were executed to analyze the data. The results showed that stealing thunder is an effective crisis communication strategy as a means to enhance organizational trustworthiness. Besides, it had a significant main effect on the positive emotion, empathy. The study also proved that employees’ cultural background is relevant to the judgment of organizations’ credibility, emotions, and the willingness to forgive, during a crisis. In summary, the study outcomes are beneficial for both the crisis communication research field, and organizations (business and nonprofit).
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:05 communication studies
Programme:Communication Studies MSc (60713)
Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/essays/63531
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