CHAPTER to the analysis of the sample data



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            5.1       INTRODUCTION

This chapter further discusses the results in chapter
4 (findings) with some recommendations for future research and conclusions of
the study on code mixing as a communication device in conversations at the
workplace. The objectives of this study are to find out the reasons for the
usage of code-mixing at the workplace and to investigate the situations that
motivate code-mixing between superior and
subordinates at the workplace.

findings of this research will be discussed in two parts, firstly, the reasons
for the usage of code-mixing at the workplace and secondly, the situations that
motivate code-mixing between superior and subordinates according to the
analysis of the sample data in chapter 4.



It is inevitable to notice that people usually code
mix their language in bilingual or multilingual societies. According to
Grosjean (1982), he states that in bilingual communities, it is very common for
speakers to code mix. With regard to the reasons of why people tend to code mix
at the workplace is that they lack facility in one language when talking about
a particular topic. They report that they code mix when they cannot find an
appropriate word or expression or when the language being used does not have
the appropriate translations for the vocabulary needed. In addition, some
bilingual remark that they usually code mix when they are tired, happy or
angry. In addition, there is few minor
reason such as they are more comfortable
in code mix instead of using one language solely to speak to their colleagues
or superior. According to Grosjean (1982), code mix is often used as a
communicative strategy to convey linguistic and social information. He also
states that code-mixing is very useful
communication resource. Greene and Walker (2004) also find that code-mixing is not random or meaningless. It
has a role, a function, facets, and
characteristics. It is a communication tool and a sign of the respondent’s
awareness of alternative communication conventions. In terms of researchers who
have a positive attitude about code
mixing, the fundamental reason why bilingual code mixes their languages is not because of their lack in language skills but
because they try to make sure their utterances are more easily understand.

With the positive points of view about code mixing, it
is necessary to examine more specific reasons and motivations about code mixing
at the workplace. Among the popular factors that motivate participants to code mix while having conversations in the workplace is participants roles and
relationship, to signal identity marker, restricted vocabulary and habitual
expressions. The excerpts used in Chapter 4 are taken from an audio recording
at the workplace. Different excerpts show different factors implement in each
excerpt to signifies its functions and roles.


4.1   Factors that Motivates Participants
to Code-Mix in Conversation at the Workplace




Okay, akak ada
bawa you all some lunch. We have lunch
together hari ini. Tak payah susah susah
keluar today except for those yang ada meeting after lunch, akak takut tak
sempat sampai
office client

To show
affiliation to others.

According to Wong &
Csikzentmihalyi (1991), every human being has a need for affiliation, which
is the need to establish and maintain relationship with others. Affiliation
generally is the basic need of people to help them in going through their
daily lives socially. It helps in term of making decisions either it is for
them personally or for others. It is also crucial for each person to have
affiliation with others because it helps to maintain stability of their
emotions. One way to show affiliation is by communication and participants
might code-mix to communicate with others as a way to establish relationship.

Assalamualaikum Dato’.
So macam mana, Dato’ jadi tak nak
masuk Bismillah Ad Duha? Kalau Dato’ berminat,
I can set up an appointment between
your marketing team and Aqib’s team. We can either come to your office or nak buat dekat
office Aqib pun boleh

To signal identity

Dato’ is a title awarded by a hereditary Royal Ruler or
Sultan of one of the nine Malay States. For e.g. Dato’ Siti Nurhaliza. While
Datuk is a title awarded by the Agong or the Governors of other states that
do not have Sultan such as Penang.

Hi, my name is Sakinah. I am from Aqib Media and
Marketing. I’m calling to propose to you our new Live talkshow dekat Astro Oasis.
Nama program tu Bismillah Ad Duha. In
that program, we have a segment called Kongsi Rezeki in which Kongsi Rezeki
ni is a platform untuk usahawan usahawan
Malaysia yang ada own products or
services untuk dipromote melalui program ini. Which it could be as a marketing tool to boost your branding
and market value.

Restricted vocbulary

To signal
language preferences/jargon in
marketing and media field. Kongsi Rezeki is the name of a segment in a
program called Bismillah Ad Duha. Hence, the usage of the name is necessary
when it is being referred to the client that has
the interest to become a part of Bismillah
Ad Duha’s sponsor. Kongsi Rezeki also signifies an Islamic content that helps entrepreneurs in Malaysia to do their
product branding via television medium.

You guys next week on Monday ada meeting tak? I want
everyone to attend WIP meeting if possible. I want to discuss something about
Aqib’s plan for OHR. You all okay ke?

To signal social relationship

The English
pronoun, you and I is used to establish a relationship between her and the
employee. Although status and age between them is different, she took the
initiative to use the English pronoun, you and I in order to make herself
close to her subordinates.

I am going to leave office early today. Ada meeting
somewhere around Wangsa Maju with Astro Production Team for Bismillah Ad
Duha. Assalamualaikum.

To maintain the
appropriateness of context

According to
Bloom and Gumperz (1972), the concept to maintain the appropriateness of
context is necessary as what is explained in situational switching.


Firstly, the need to affiliate with others is very
significant when it comes to building a relationship
with others. Excerpt 1 signifies the need for
affiliation between the superior and subordinates. Jablin (1979) described
superior-subordinate communication patterns as a form of work interactions in
superior and subordinate relationships. According to Lee (1997), the quality of
the superior and subordinate relationships is of a crucial importance to the
employees as well as the organization
because subordinates identify their immediate superior as the most preferred
source of information about events in an organization.
Having a good superior and subordinates is very crucial since it affects from
the perspective of trust. If one does not have enough trust in his or her
superior or vice versa, there is no real and effective communication can happen
there thus no quality work can be produced. A good relationship could help to build one’s motivations or spirit to do
work, knowing that his or her superior has an utmost faith in them to do the
work assigned. This could be supported by Jablin and Krone (1994) in which he
expands the superior and subordinate communication as somewhat includes a
component of social support in superior and subordinate interactions. In
addition, according to Meiners & Miller (2004), social support is the
communication between people who lend a hand, reassure, show concern for, give
encouragement between the superior and subordinate. The second factor on why
code-mixing has been used as a communication device in conversations at the
workplace is to signal identity marker. In Malaysia, there are certain terms or
title awarded by the certain organization.
As for an example, Dato’ or Datuk is a title awarded by a hereditary Royal
Ruler or Sultan of one of the nine Malay states in Malaysia. The title is given
accordingly to their contributions in Malaysia. The contributions could be in
terms of entertainment, business, or even their achievements in any big sports
event.  Whenever someone is honored by the hereditary Royal Ruler or
Sultan, it is compulsory to call them using their given title. As can be seen
in Chapter 4, the excerpt contains the word Dato’ in which the client has
earned it through his contributions in promoting the traditional way of taking
care of one’s health by therapy point. Therapy point in Malaysia is a custom
brought by the Malay people from many years before. It is something that almost
lost by the revolving years of technology and is currently in a critical
situation and needs to be embraced by the
current generation or else, it would be one of the things that are lost as the years passing by. Another
factor contributing to code-mixing as a communication device in conversations
at the workplace is restricted vocabulary. Not every word has the same exact
meaning when uttered in a different language. Although the meaning could be
correct theoretically, it would not give the same feelings that are intended by the speakers. Excerpt 3 in
chapter 4 clearly shown that certain word could not be replaced by another word since it does not carry the same
meaning. In the case of Excerpt 3, the segment called as ‘Kongsi Rezeki. The
jargon used to refer to a segment in the Bismillah Ad Duha programme is called
Kongsi Rezeki. Since it is something that could not be changed whenever it used by the participants to talk about
Bismillah Ad Duha, it is inevitable to change the name. It could create
confusion among the participants and the
hearer if the name of the segment to be changed. The next factor is to signal
social relationship In Aqib Media and Marketing, the participants involved
always wanted a close relationship with
one another. They believe that everyone deserves to be treated like family and
it is everyone responsibility to make sure everyone having an equal treatment
and work under a harmonious environment. The top management in Aqib Media and
Marketing always remind her subordinates to always take care of one another not
treated one another like a stranger. Hence the usage of the pronoun I and you in conversations whether it
is about work-related topics or daily conversational topic. The last factor is discussed in this research study is the
usage of code-mixing to maintain appropriateness of context.  The excerpt taken from a conversation between
a superior to her subordinates shows that the superior is ending her words with
a salam. Salam or Assalamualaikum is an Islamic greeting that a Muslim give
when confronts another Muslim as a wish to pray for his brothers or sisters in
Islam. The superior herself, being a devoted Muslim, in which she follows the
guidelines of Islamic sunnah, gave her Salam before leaving the office.
Although the word Assalamualaikum is originally from the Arabic language, the Malays in Malaysia has instilled the word to become part of their daily











5.4     Situational
Factors that Motivates Participants to Code-Mix at the      



Aspects Encouraging Participants to Code-Mix at the



on the questionnaire given to the selected participants, the question asked was
about the aspects encouraging the participants to code-mix at the workplace.
The choice of answers given is when
talking about business proposal, clients
or meeting agenda. 10 out of 12 participants answered they code-mix mostly when
talking about clients, 2 out of 12 participants answered while talking about business proposal and none of the participants
answered talking about meeting agenda as the aspects that encourage them to
talk about code-mixing.


major function of the participants in this company is to assist clients from
the very beginning of the process until the end. To have the client trust them
is not an easy job, as presenting first impressions will be very crucial.


5.4.2       Conversation between Subordinates and


respondent answered yes when giving their answer to the question asked in the
questionnaire. The question is to determine whether the selected participants
code-mix when talking or having a conversation with their superior. The data
collected reveals quite a shocking data since all the participants have a good
and solid educational background and high level of language acquisition. The
reason that all of the respondents answered yes is because it is a normal practice at
the workplace. The superior is determine
to have less formality during working hours. It is said that by doing so, a
less-stress and more happier environment
can be created at the workplace.


5.4.3      Code-Mixing in Meetings at the Workplace


as defined by ….. is considered as . Meetings is considered as a formal setting
at the workplace. By formal, it has a certain rules and norms on how someone
should react or act in that situation. Code-mixing while in a meeting is
considered as rude depending on the organization. Some organization would not
mind the mixing of language by their employees in meetings as long as the main
agenda and the discussion is reaching its objective. Meanwhile, some
organization that focus solely in using one language, which is the English
language, would considered the act as unprofessional and breaching the
organization’s code of working.


5.4.4    Code-Mixing in Daily Conversation at the


conversation at the workplace means that the topic or the subject being
discussed is not about something formal or work-related. It is more on asking
another colleague a personal-related topic such as their health, their vacation
trip and so on. All participants answered yes when asked about this. Their
answer is connected to the situational factor which is because the topic of the
conversation is not something formal. Hence, the participants felt there is no
concern to use the English language solely.


5.4.5       Code-Mixing between Colleagues in

               Topic at the Workplace


but not least, the situational factor that is investigates in this research
study is if the participants code-mix when talking about work-related topic at
the workplace. All of the participants answered yes. However, the reasoning for
that is indicated that they will only code-mix if the other person code-mix
too. Although the organisation does not stressed much on the language that
should be used during working hours, the participants have the urge to react to
their colleague using the same language the other person speaks to them to.