Journal article

When communication professionals become trainers : a new role


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Publication Details

Author list: Bergman, Sandra

Publication year: 2020

Start page: 85

End page: 102

Number of pages: 18

ISSN: 1363-254X


View additional information: View in Web of Science


Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to examine how communication professionals enact an educational role aimed at improving organisational communication through communication training. Furthermore, this article analyses what this implementation means for the role of the communication professionals. Design/methodology/approach: Qualitative interviews were conducted with seven communication professionals and ten managers in two organisations. The organisations were selected due to their involvement in developing and implementing communication training programmes. The interviews were then transcribed and analysed inductively. Findings: This study demonstrates how communication professionals are expanding their professional role to become trainers in communication. The managers who participated reported increased awareness of the communication departments and the support they can provide. The communication departments became more visible in the organisations. Research limitations/implications: The study is qualitative and limited to two organisations. The managers perspectives suggest that when communication professionals act as internal trainers, their role within an organisation is strengthened. Practical implications: The results of this study indicate that in-house communication professionals enable managers to improve their communication, boosting their ability to implement simultaneous large-scale training and rendering the communication department more visible and available throughout the organisation. Originality/value: This study adds to the existing discussion regarding the new roles of communication professionals in organisations by presenting two cases in which communication professionals are successfully functioning as internal communication trainers. The findings can help both researchers and practitioners gain insights into the future role of the communication profession.


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