How does Grapevine operate as explained by Haimann?


Grapevine operate

Theo Haimann explains the following procedures:-

“The grapevine, being spontaneous, has no definite pattern of stable membership. Its path and behaviour is unpredictable and the path followed yesterday is not necessarily the same as today and tomorrow.


Normally, only a small number of people are active participants in the grapevine, and the vast majority hears the information through the grapevine but does not pass it along.

Any person within the organisation is likely to become active in the grapevine at one occasion or the other. There are some subordinates who tend to be more active in the grapevine than others.

They feel their prestige is enhanced by providing the latest news and in so doing do not hesitate to spread and change the news as to ‘completeness’ and ‘accuracy’, Since the grapevine is transmitted by oral communication, and since the receiver knows that the sender cannot be held accountable,

It is understandable that the transmitter does not hesitate to exercise his imagination. Every time he passes on a message he screens it and relates it as he ‘understood’ it, with the result that the final versions vary greatly.


In periods of excitement and sudden changes the grapevine will become more active than at other occasions. Those are periods of insecurity and great anxiety; the grapevine, give members of the organisation an outlet to air their fears’ and apprehensions in the form of rumors”.

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