MUSSON, G. and COHEN, L., 1999. Understanding language processes: a neglected skill in the management curriculum. Management Learning, 30 (1), pp. 27-42
Understanding how language works is central to an understanding of how organizations work. This argument is well rehearsed in the organizational literature, and is implicit in many of the modules taught in management education. Yet students of management are rarely given a theoretical base or the tools and skills required for analysing language and other sign systems used in organizations. Using examples from current literature and the authors’ own research, this article argues that this omission should be rectified so that students of management can gain an understanding of how language functions to create particular meanings and serve particular purposes. The article describes the authors’ attempts to provide a theoretical base and relevant tools and skills to management students within their own institution.