0000The dynamics involved
in creating an effective working relationship between Unit Commander
and Public Affairs Officer are complex and dependent on numerous
variables. Recognizing factors contributing to a dysfunctional
working relationship and planning effective measures to rectify
problems, misconceptions or personal constructs impacting functionality
is imperative to mission accomplishment for both PAO and Commanding
Primary in this effort must be the establishment of a baseline
regarding actual and perceived status of relationships between
PAO and CO. A correlative analysis of public affairs officer and
commanding officer survey results provides the information needed
to establish this baseline. Qualitative data provided by Commanding
Officers illustrates possible cause / motive rational for particular
behavior patterns exhibited by CO's when dealing with public affairs
It is expected the data will show a correlation between perceived
value levels and perceived degrees of integration of PAO assets
and programs from both the PAO and CO perspectives (see Fig 1).
More importantly, it is expected that qualitative data collected
from CO surveys will provide categorical information which will
lead to greater understanding of the interpersonal or organizational
Experience, Example) = Integration
0000The 3-E model provides the framework
from which this data will be displayed (see Fig. 2). The basic
information provided from this method of research affords a PAO
a foundation from which to plan communications strategies aimed
at enhancing PAO / CO relationships and maximizing functionality
within the command.
|EDF - Education (Formal)
||EXP - Experience (PA Personnel)
||EMP - Examples (PA Personnel)
|EDI - Education (Informal)
||EXA - Experience (PA Activities)
||EMA - Examples (PA Personnel)
0000Utilizing the theoretical perspectives
provided in this study a PAO can approach interpersonal and organizational
communication problems with the tools necessary to explain, predict
and control circumstances associated with PA and commander interaction
as explained in the VI Spiral Model (see Fig. 3).
of the basic principles of co-orientation theory helps the public
affairs officer assess the factors involved in creating a climate
of trust between himself or herself and the commander. Keeping
the goal in mind of attaining second level CO-orientation and
monitoring the BRP dyadic relationship, the PAO can increase the
level of trust through a formal or informal training or educational
0000Predicted outcome value theory
guides the PAO in understanding the motivations behind specific
behavior patterns exhibited regarding the level of communication
between the PAO and commander. Actively seeking out contact, or
avoiding and restricting contact are actions based on the assessment
made pertaining to the predicted outcome of the relationship.
Manipulating the information influencing the commander's formation
of outcome maximization goals will assist the PAO in producing
a climate conducive to mutual cooperation.
0000Utilizing the persuasive techniques
outlined in social judgment theory, a PAO increases the likelihood
of widening a commander's latitude of acceptance on a given subject
through advocating a position strategically placed in the outer
limits of the commander's latitude of non commitment. The commander's
level of ego-involvement if also a factor in planning communication
strategies designed to alter a commander's social judgment of
Leader member exchange theory assists the PAO in understanding
various levels of trust accorded to different subordinates serving
the commander. Cultivating the PA and commander relationship with
in-group or out-group criteria in mind the PAO increases the likelihood
of greater work related responsiveness and increased communication
and administrative activities.
0000The demographic information collected
in each survey provides opportunities for further analytical scrutiny
regarding correlations across a broad spectrum of comparisons
as well as specific applications of the theoretical principles
proposed in the main study. Each branch of military service is
comprised of multiple layers of command and control assets, each
posing different communication and organizational problems to
PAOs regarding their respective commanders. A breakdown of the
data by type command or other categorical separation would provide
applied communication possibilities tailored for specific situations
0000This study can serve as a catalyst
for further research into the psychological and sociological aspects
of military command and their ramifications on organizational
communication regarding public affairs and unit effectiveness
toward mission accomplishment. Although this study looks at a
narrow field of causal and sociocognitive reasoning for certain
behavior patterns exhibited among commanding officers, there are
numerous other factors unique to military command that contribute
to overall interaction with subordinate elements which could be
examined more closely.
0000Additionally, the perspective
of the public affairs practitioner can be further scrutinized.
Numerous variables exist within the subordinate role similar to
those of the commanding officer regarding relationship and trust
building as well as sociological interaction factors affecting
progress toward a common goal.
0000Existing studies may also serve
to enhance the findings of this study. Many works in different
disciplines are relevant to the basic precept of this study including
sociocognitive learning structure studies as well as the volumes
of existing work on interpersonal and organizational communication.
The application of existing studies must be modified to apply
to the specific gravity of military command, but the basic concepts
of communication studies offer a wealth of prospective research
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