It was the resource that was especially useful to me recently because it provided me with opportunities for work communication and information contacts. Information technology has helped people survive in difficult times like the pandemic and develop and strive. It motivates individuals to continue living, find meaning in their activities, and feel that they are part of the more extensive community. When individuals had no opportunity to communicate with others in real life, they substituted this communication with a digital presence. In addition, information technologies reformed the sphere of work significantly, making freelance easy to realize. During the pandemic, human lives have become more digitalized, and the focus has shifted to media and information technology much more than in the previous decade. E-commerce and media showed significant and rapid growth in 2020, at 15 and 80 percent, respectively (Bridges, 2017). Most people are shifting their focus to media, and this trend, activated and catalyzed during the pandemic, will intensify in the future.
In a changing business environment, the leadership structure must also evolve. Employees and business leaders need to be present on social networks to communicate directly with clients, articulate the company’s position, and participate in economic life and solve social and cultural problems. Clients’ responses on social media give a business direct feedback concerning the organizational change that is necessary at the moment. For instance, when people need smartphones with bigger screens, but the company continues to disregard these desires, its profit decreases. Thus, an effective leader needs to use social networks and actively communicate with customers and employees.
The first ethical problem when implementing social media initiatives is leadership strategy inconsistency. Not all leaders can find balance in clear leadership and concessions they should make. For instance, the company can state that it supports diversity but refuses to hire people with disabilities or show them in its promotion campaigns. The second issue is the lack of transparency, which leads to the loss of credibility of the company. Contemporary communication requires a high level of transparency, which means that the company should have a stable position that people understand (Jiang & Men, 2017). When companies try to withhold or hide information, the public gets nervous and trusts the company less.
Effective change in an organization’s adoption of social media initiatives is essential nowadays and requested by workers and customers. More than half of the employees ask for more digital communication because they want to be updated on the course of their actions as often as possible (Bridges, 2017). Moreover, customers note that in more than two-thirds of cases, they turn to the organization’s website and social networks for clarification on various situations (Bridges, 2017). It means that if a company cannot build strong and direct relationships with employees and customers, it will be managed by other media platforms that will be ready to provide information.
The first ethical problem that I expect to encounter is the conflict between transparency and consistency. It is not obvious what information the company should share with the public and what information is to be left hidden. Some information can also be personal or vital for other people, like company workers or counterparts (Purtova, 2017). The second ethical problem is derived from personal information protection and media transparency. Nowadays, personal data protection is a conditional concept, and there is no one hundred percent security policy (Purtova, 2017). However, the ethical costs of leaking personal information always fall on businesses. Similar ethical principles can be applied to the course project because there should be a balance between transparency and privacy.
Businesses should declare an honesty policy for the customers and employees to help the company remain stable under challenging situations. A 2017 survey on business transparency showed that companies should treat transparency strategically, purposefully, and instrumentally. First, it is critical to develop a list of ethical standards and share it among the employees. Second, ensuring these standards are pursued in practice is vital. Third, the company should become the guarantee in biased situations that promote its ethical standards (Baraibar‐Diez et al., 2017). Thus, direct communication, constant contact, and building quasi-personal relationships with clients help to survive difficult periods of uncertainty.
I assume that my classmate might also encounter ethical issues connected with diversity. The person’s cultural background influences the ways they think about the surrounding reality, communication, and ways to develop business. For instance, a Muslim woman might not regard personal contact from the manager as positive. Therefore, the inability to meet the person’s ethical values from a different culture might become a problem in communication. It is possible to solve this ethical issue using the individual approach for every client. It might be challenging because an individual approach requires much attention and time, which is not always possible in business interactions.
Baraibar‐Diez, E., Odriozola, M. D., & Fernández Sánchez, J. L. (2017). A survey of transparency: An intrinsic aspect of business strategy. Business Strategy and the Environment, 26(4), 480-489.
Bridges, W. (2017). Managing transitions: Making the most of change. Da Capo Lifelong Books.
Jiang, H., & Men, R. L. (2017). Creating an engaged workforce: The impact of authentic leadership, transparent organizational communication, and work-life enrichment. Communication Research, 44(2), 225–243.
Purtova, N. (2017). Do property rights in personal data make sense after the big data turn? Individual Control and Transparency. Journal of Law and Economic Regulation, 10(2), 1-26.