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ERIC Number: EJ851126
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
ISSN: ISSN-1080-5699
Use of Uncertainty Reduction and Narrative Paradigm Theories in Management Consulting and Teaching: Lessons Learned
Barker, Randolph T.; Gower, Kim
Business Communication Quarterly, v72 n3 p338-341 2009
Teaching business communication while performing professional business consulting is the perfect learning match. The bizarre but true stories from the consulting world provide excellent analogies for classroom learning, and feedback from students about the consulting experiences reaffirms the power of using stories for teaching. When discussing this article, the authors recognized that they used two distinct communication theories for consulting and then for relaying these experiences in teaching. First, they talked about the challenge of truly in-depth process consulting: determining with the client what they "need," not simply what they want. This requires extensive uncertainty reduction theory (URT)--continuing to drill down until the true nature of the problem is revealed and further consulting can begin. In the classroom, however, the authors relay their consulting opportunities using narrative paradigm theory (NPT). Students are constantly amazed when it is explained that the organizations they are going to work for, in truth, are not always incredibly organized or managed, so the rational and value-laden approach of NPT helps to enhance the believability and learning. In this article, the authors present a story illustrating that the effective use of URT, when consulting, provides a wealth of classroom narratives (NPT) for teaching.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A