G5 Doctoral dissertation (article)
Towards maturity in alignment : balancing organizational listening and speaking on social media (2024)
Sosiaalisen median kuuntelun ja puhumisen tasapaino organisaation strategisten linjausten tukena

Erkkilä, T. (2024). Towards maturity in alignment : balancing organizational listening and speaking on social media [Doctoral dissertation]. University of Jyväskylä. JYU Dissertations, 793. https://urn.fi/URN:ISBN:978-952-86-0177-7

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editorsErkkilä, Taina


Journal or seriesJYU Dissertations


Publication year2024

Number in series793

Number of pages in the book1 verkkoaineisto (57 sivua, 71 sivua useina numerointijaksoina, 4 numeroimatonta sivua)

PublisherUniversity of Jyväskylä

Place of PublicationJyväskylä

Publication countryFinland

Publication languageEnglish

Persistent website addresshttps://urn.fi/URN:ISBN:978-952-86-0177-7

Publication open accessOpenly available

Publication channel open accessOpen Access channel


The swift progression in the popularity of social media has significantly impacted organizations. Over the past decade, the role of corporate communications has undergone a significant transformation, evolving into the management and alignment of a dynamic system where interconnected components contribute to organizational representation.
This thesis explores factors that either facilitate or impede effective listening and speaking processes on social media within organizations. It enhances our understanding of how organizations can leverage social listening also in management to align strategies or services to better meet the needs of stakeholders. The dissertation consists of four articles along with this overarching summary. Sub-studies 1 and 2 delve into the maturity and triggers for organizational presence and listening in social media. Sub-study 3 is an empirical, qualitative examination of how communication departments in public organizations, responsible for COVID-19-related communication to citizens, managed the considerable number of comments and questions on their social media channels. Sub-study 4 is a case study on the strategic management of social media communication in two large financial organizations, proposing a new voicing architecture.
The findings suggest that organizations undergo distinct phases of maturity in their adoption of social media. Triggers for active speaking and listening are often related to crisis or issue management. A challenge lies in maintaining a balance between speaking and listening. To support the management of this dynamic system, employees serving as spokespersons for an organization can also act as listening agents. This dissertation elucidates the process of developing and strategically managing the organizational voicing and listening function to optimally support strategic alignment with an emergent approach. A professionally managed social listening approach supports an organization’s resilience and external alignment in the rapidly changing operating environment, fostering trust and engagement among stakeholders.

Keywordssocial mediaorganisational communication and public relationsstrategic leadershipcommunication strategiesstakeholder groupslisteningdoctoral dissertations

Free keywordsorganizational listening; listening agents; social media; strategic communication management; voicing and listening architecture

Contributing organizations

Ministry reportingYes

Reporting Year2024

Last updated on 2024-15-06 at 01:46