The Importance of Strategic Communication During Change Management at Palm College of Hospitality and Event Management

Caroline Day
Mathilda van Niekerk, University of Central Florida
Fevzi Okumus, University of Central Florida


This case study engages with the importance of strategic communication during the change management process at Palm College of Hospitality and Event Management. The college is currently experiencing a change in administration from a dean of almost ten years who has been replaced by a new dean. The change management process is analyzed by means of the framework of the entrepreneurial organization theory (EOT), from which strategic communication and its four components are derived (aligning, energizing, visioning, and constituting). A lack of or ineffective strategic communication pertaining to the new vision, future direction and staffing of the college is causing confusion, a lack of trust, declining morale, and conflicting emotions among organizational members. Furthermore, the multi-campus nature of the college makes strategic communication, information dissemination, and strong leadership even more challenging. Without effective strategic communication, the morale of faculty and staff will continue to decline and eventually they may struggle to uphold the vision of the administration. Potential solutions aimed at overcoming the communication challenge across multiple campuses are offered.