ABSTRACT: The research examines the effect of poor Internal Public Relations on company’s productivity with a specific focus on Globalcom Nigeria. For organisation to grow, survive and have favourable image, it must have good support of its internal and external publics, socially responsible. The research was anchored on the Grunig and Hunt Model, Systems Theory and Situational Theory. Survey research method was used while the data collection instrument used was the questionnaire. The study used Multistage sampling techniques to selected 100 respondents across various departments within Globalcom Office Lagos. The data were analysed in frequency and percentage method. Findings show that Globalcom has active internal public relations department and PRs Consultancy Firms. Also, Globalcom is really making use of PRs to maintain its internal publics’ rapports, corporate reputation and overall performance of the company. Also, poor internal public relations may lower workers morale, low productivity and eventually lead to low commitment. The study recommended that Public Relations department should be more creative and innovative in designing new approach to solve every challenge and device new tactics that can facilitate performance while, management of corporate or business organizations should ensure that they make use of social media and other news media effectively in disseminating, interacting and solving problems.
INTERNAL PUBLIC RELATIONS
1.1 Background of the Study
The concept of “Publics” has become synonymous with public relations. This is simply based on the fact that without publics there cannot be “public relations”. No publics, nothing to relate with. Thus, the whole idea of public relations begins with publics and ends with publics because the public relations stands on the point that organisations, whatever or whichever the type, must maintain and sustain mutual understanding and relationships with their various publics. No wonder it is rare to see any definition of public relations without the concept PUBLIC not mentioned. For instance, the most popular acceptable definition of public relations offers by the British Institute of Public Relations states that “Public relations is a deliberate, planned and sustained efforts to establish and maintain mutual understanding between an organization and its publics” cited in (Ogbiten, 2014).
Therefore, no single organization can boast of it success or survival for another year; if it fails to manage the human, material and other resources carefully and judiciously. Also, there is no amount of fund used in establishing a firm and without adequate management, it will run out crash in due time. The foremost resource to manage and ensure they are in good condition and shape is human resources because they make other resources (material, financial and other resources) works.
This human resource is invaluable asset to every organization willing to success. It can be internal and external public or internal and external community. An organisation like Globalcom has several publics it deals with and that deals with the company too, such publics include but not limited to the staff (full time and causal), management team, government agencies (NCC, CAC, FIRS, Ministry of information etc), phone call customers, data customers, other telecommunication companies, Nigeria banking sector, CBN, National Assembly committee on telecommunication, GSM/Smartphone Providers, search engine companies, social media companies, contractors etc
This public or community can be summed up as the internal publics and external public. It is internal when it involves people employed by a firm or members of an organization and they are intimately related with the functioning of the organisation such as the full time staff, casual staff, management staff and company executive. While the external public or external community are those public that is not from within the organisation but from external whose activities may have impact on the activities of the organisation such as government and its agencies, customers and contractors etc (Ogbiten, 2014).
To achieve effective and dynamic work flow in an organisation, the management team or business owner must decide which of the type of public relations should be adopted i.e in-house style or external style otherwise known as consultancy firm because both comes with lots of advantages and disadvantages. Global Com as a big firm adopted in-house department of public relations otherwise refers to as public affairs department to handle and design all public relations programmes that will enhance it productivity.
Internal public relations can be defined as a type of public relations style in which a unit, individuals or department is created within an organization for public relations purposes, rather than out-sourcing for consultancy. It also means when an organization create, own, finance and manage its information and other public affairs internally without hiring or seeking any external assistance (Olayinka, 2016).
A public relations practitioner who is employed by an organization, to solely manage the affairs of its public relations department can be said to be an in-house public relations specialist. This individual is usually a member of the management board. He advises management on the implications of policies formulated to run the affairs of the organization.
Global Com Nigeria Ltd adopted In-House Public relations style because it deals of lots of publics and issues being a very large establishment with over 2500 staff and over 8 million subscribers. Going by the definition of British Institute of Public Relations (BIPR), it implies that one of the core objectives of public relations is to ensure mutual understanding between an organization and its various public. Public relations is an essential function of management because no organization can survive without good rapport with public. Organizations, institutions, individuals and corporate entity do have two or more public they deal with and as a result, they must strike a balance so as not to lose their reputation and trust rather they build, maintain and sustain good image.
Therefore, public relations is an all-embracing concept that pervades the entire management process of today’s commercial and non-commercial organizations or institutions. It is largely a social philosophical and practical concept based on the premise that people matter and that for environment of the modern society it must be seen as adequately addressing itself to the peculiar needs and interests of all with whom it deals. And one of the common ways to ensure peace in an institution is to engage the service of public relations to prevent crisis, manage crisis, promote good image, build good relations between and among the publics through community relations and internal public relations.
Public relations should know to communicate effectively to the public effectively and know to present the information because poor handling of information or wrong channels of disseminating information can bring more problems while it also expected of the PRs to counsel managements on various policies and programmes that may not go down well with the internal publics.
It is against this background that the research examines Poor Internal Public Relations and its Implications on company’s productivity with a specific focus on Global Com with the view to know the type of PR adopted by Glo, the extent which the internal public relations department is performing its functions, some of its challenges among others.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Previous studies on public relations on organisations find out that so many organizations in the past neither recognise nor appreciate public relations efforts in Nigeria (Hamad, 2014). The managements do not realize the potential of public relations activities in building and enhancing not only a good image for the success of the organization but also ensuring success. It has been observed that the management’s attitude is lukewarm and non-challant toward public relations department and their activities (Okonkwo, 2015).
Besides, they don’t want to spend money on its activities such as organizing seminars, press conference, press tour etc because of the erroneous and selfish belief that public relations efforts bring little benefits to the organization. Although, lots of studies have been conducted on the role of public relations in an organization, such as Aregbesola (2017) titled “role of public relations in building mutual understanding between Osun State Polytechnic and Iree Community”, Ajayi (2013) titled “role of public relations in building corporate image of Dangote Group of Company”, Akpan(2014) titled “role of public relations in enhancing corporate image of the Nigerian army” but little or no research has been specifically conducted to focus on the effect of poor internal public relations on company’s productivity and it against this background that this study is set out to examine the Poor Internal Public Relations and its Implications on company’s productivity within the Globalcom a frontline telecommunication company in Nigeria.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
- To ascertain the extent which internal public relations unit/department contributes to the corporate reputation and overall performance of Globalcom.
- To determine the extent which Globalcom in Lagos use public relations to build good rapport within its internal and external public.
1.4 Research Questions
- To what extent is internal public relations unit/department contributes to the corporate reputation and overall performance of Globalcom?
- To what extent is Globalcom in Lagos use public relations to build good rapport within its public?
1.5 Significance of the Study
The study will help brand owners to understand the importance of public relations especially the role of internal public relations on the overall organization success.
It will also enable companies to structure their public relations programmes, campaigns, and activities to achieve mutual understanding not only with the external publics but also with the internal public in order to improve company corporate image and leading to better performance and public acceptance.
This study will give a clear insight into how internal public relations can increase workers morale and equally influence workers attitude, love and interest that will result to the overall performance of the organization.
Research like this will benefit a lot of people. Few among the beneficiaries include but not limited to undergraduates. And graduates of mass communication and public relations.
It will as well benefit the public relations practitioners on what is expected of them in higher institutions. It will serve as eyes opener to the management of higher institution of learning on the need to have a functioning public relations department or unit on their campus
In addition, this research work tries to provide satisfactory answers to some questions that are disturbing the mind of policy formulators, students and researcher.
Researchers will know how the public relations promote mutual understanding between the organization and publics; Students in various institutions will benefit from this project work by knowing the roles of public relations in the society.
Moreover, policy formulators will benefit from this research work because they will be able to identify the usefulness of public relations to them on policy formulations and corporate management.
Above all, this study will serve as an addition to existing literature on the topic. Future researchers and students will find the material relevant as it forms bulk literature that exist in the field of mass communication, public relations, consumers behaviour, etchat they can lay hands on when carrying out research related or similar to this.
1.6 Scope of the Study
The study which examines Poor Internal Public Relations and its Implications on company’s productivity has been narrowed in scope to Globalcom headquarters in Lagos. The choice of this scope is due to the fact that Telecommunication Company often employs many staff to handle and perform lots of tasks and deals will lots of customers. Other factors are proximity, inadequate time and fund to study all organisations in Nigeria.
1.7 Operational Definition of Terms
Effect: This refers to the impact that poor internal public relations has on organisation’s productivity.
Poor: This means in effective or lack of public relations department, unit or personnel to handle its internal publics adequately.
Internal Public Relations: This refers to the type of public relations style in which a unit, individuals or department is created within a Global com to achieve public relations purposes such as corporate image, corporate social responsibility etc.
Company’s Productivity: This is the degree of success and performance experienced by Globalcom relations to how public relations department/unit of the company handles its internal publics.
Globalcom: This is one of the leading telecommunication giants in Nigeria and it covers several states providing data, voice call, sms etc to Nigeria.