ERIC Number: EJ901021
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Oct
Reframing Michael Scott: Exploring Inappropriate Workplace Communication
Schaefer, Zachary A.
Communication Teacher, v24 n4 p208-210 Oct 2010
Individuals who work in professional settings interact with others who may exhibit a variety of cultural beliefs and decision-making approaches. Page (2007) argues that cognitive diversity (i.e., how people approach and attempt to solve problems) is a vital asset in effective organizations. Michael Scott, who portrays the inept main character on the television show "The Office," constantly offends his employees with sexist, racist, and otherwise insulting comments as a "well-intended" motivational strategy. By taking on the role of manager, students discuss the implications of Michael's intentionality and reframe his ideas to create more effective outcomes. The point of this activity is to challenge students to reframe Michael Scott's remarks into more productive workplace communication. Depending on the course, the activity may lead to a class discussion about the relationship between framing ideas, cultural competence, and civil discourse. Discussions revolve around how these ideas are vital to the successful functioning of groups, organizations, and societies. A list of references and suggested readings is included.
Descriptors: Group Discussion, Communication Skills, Discussion (Teaching Technique), Business Communication, Beliefs, Communication Strategies, Intercultural Communication, Organizational Communication
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A