Experience Sampling as a Method for Studying In Situ Organizational Communication

  • Ben Lauren Michigan State University
Keywords: Communication, knowledge, organization, ECR, event contingent recording, in situ communication, experience sampling


The communication flows in organizations seem to be in constant state of flux, and this is particularly true when thinking about how the various strategies and mediated practices people use to interact with peers. As organizations work to establish healthy communication workflows, they need insight into how communication around projects exists in situ (i.e., as it happens in the moment) to better understand and support the employee experience so work can get done. The employee experience with communication across different events, settings, and ideologies plays an important role in meeting the intended outcomes of project work, and learning about the in situ communication practices of teams and individual employees remains an important consideration for organizational researchers. This article describes a method for studying in situ communication in the workplace called experience sampling. The goal for this article is to explain how experience sampling can be used to study communicative events in the workplace by drawing from two datasets of original research. From the use of experience sampling depicted in these case studies, the article indicates lessons learned about using experience sampling to study worker’s in situ communication in the workplace.

Author Biography

Ben Lauren, Michigan State University
Benjamin Lauren is an Assistant Professor of Experience Architecture (XA) in the Writing, Rhetoric, and American Cultures Department at Michigan State University, where he teaches  Professional Writing, Experience Architecture, and Rhetoric and Writing. He is also a Writing, Information, and Digital Experience (WIDE) Researcher and the Book Editor at Communication Design Quarterly (CDQ). Ben also produces a podcast series for CDQ. His research focuses on how people manage creative and collaborative activities in a variety of professional contexts. Other recent projects have addressed mobile application development, the design of workplaces, agile and lean project management, and play-based training in the workplace.
How to Cite
Lauren, B. (2017). Experience Sampling as a Method for Studying In Situ Organizational Communication. Journal of Organizational Knowledge Communication, 3(1), 63-79. https://doi.org/10.7146/jookc.v3i1.24348