Does Transparency in Communication Matter? The Impact of Transparent Communication by Immediate Supervisors on Trust in Supervisors and Readiness to Change

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2022-11
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Abstract

Change is constant within organizations today, and transparency in communication is essential to ensure employees are ready to change. The aim of this research was to assess the impact of transparent communication by an immediate supervisor during strategic change on the perceived trust in the immediate supervisor and employees’ readiness to change. Transparent communication by immediate supervisors was hypothesized to positively impact trust in supervisors and employee readiness to change, and trust in supervisors was hypothesized to positively impact employee readiness to change, and partially mediate the relationship between transparent communication by immediate supervisors and employee readiness to change. Data was collected through a Qualtrics® panel using an online cross-sectional survey of respondents who worked full time in the U.S., were experiencing change at work, and reported to a supervisor in an organization. The hypothesized relationships between transparency,readiness to change, and trust were supported. This study was the first to assess the impact of transparency by immediate supervisors on the readiness to change of employees, and the hope is that this finding will spur additional research and practical conversations around the impact of transparent communication on employee outcomes.

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Keywords
transparency, organizational change, reactions to change, trust, trustworthiness
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