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Organizational Communication Chapter Eight
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 2 Communication Concepts Communication is defined as the process by which a person, group or organization (the sender) transmits some type of information (the message) to another person, group or organization (the receiver) Channels of Communication include telephone lines, radio and television signals, fiber-optic cables, mail routes, and even the airwaves that carry the vibrations of our voices
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 3 Encoding is the process of translating an idea into a form, such as written or spoken language, that can be recognized by a receiver Decoding is the process of converting a message back into a sender’s original ideas Feedback is the process of providing information about the impact of a message on the receiver Noise is the name given to factors that distort the clarity of messages Communication Concepts
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 4 The Communication Process
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 5 Formal Communication Formal communication is the process of sharing official information with others who need to know it. Formal communication usually follows the prescribed pattern of interrelationships between various units of an organization, which is commonly depicted in an organization chart
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 6 Formal Communication Formal communication is driven by the hierarchical structure of the organization according to general principles of management (Fayol, Weber, etc.) Unit of command: one supervisor Scaler principle: line of authority Span of control: 3-8 subordinates Line/staff distinction: major dichotomy
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 7 Formal Communication Downward communication consists of instructions, directions, and orders – that is, messages telling subordinates what they should be doing – as well as feedback Upward communication consists of messages that managers need to do their jobs, such as data required to complete projects, suggestions for improvement, status reports, and new ideas Horizontal communication consists of messages that flow laterally, including efforts at coordination and attempts to work together
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 8 Informal Communication Informal communication consists of information shared without any formally imposed obligations or restrictions The grapevine refers to the pathways along which unofficial information travels Rumors are messages that transmit information that is almost totally without any basis in fact and is unverifiable
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 9 Forms of Communication Verbal communication consists of transmitting and receiving ideas using words Oral: face-to-face talks, telephone conversations Written: faxes, letters, e-mail messages Nonverbal communication consists of transmitting and receiving ideas without words Facial gestures, body language, clothes
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 10 Traditional Communication Media
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 11 Face-to-Face vs. Online Communication
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 12 Nonverbal Communication The transmission of messages without the use of words Types Mode of Dress Waiting Time Seating Position
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 13 Nonverbal Communication Tips â Stand and sit using an erect posture. Avoid slouching. â When confronted, stand up straight. Do not cower. â Nod your head to show that you are listening to someone talk. â Maintain eye contact and smile at those with whom you are talking. â Use hand gestures in a relaxed, nonmechanical way. â Always be neat, well groomed, and wear clean, well- pressed clothes. â Stand and sit using an erect posture. Avoid slouching. â When confronted, stand up straight. Do not cower. â Nod your head to show that you are listening to someone talk. â Maintain eye contact and smile at those with whom you are talking. â Use hand gestures in a relaxed, nonmechanical way. â Always be neat, well groomed, and wear clean, well- pressed clothes. Table 8.1
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 14 Improving Your Communication Skills Use inspirational communication tactics Be a supportive communicator Encourage open feedback Use simple language Avoid overload Walk your talk Be a good listener
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 15 Inspirational Communication Project confidence and power with emotion- provoking words Be credible Pitch your message to the listener Cut through the clutter Avoid “junk words” that dilute your message Use front-loaded messages Cut through the clutter
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 16 Message Bombardment
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 17 Supportive Communication Supportive communication involves showing people that you are interested in what they have to say, and responding in a way that strengthens the relationship between you Supportive communication techniques include Focusing on the problem rather than the person Matching your words and your body language Acknowledging the other person’s ideas Keeping the conversation going
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 18 Feedback 360-degree Feedback Suggestion Systems Suggestion Systems: Procedures that provide formal mechanisms to employees for presenting their ideas to the company Corporate Hotlines Corporate Hotlines: Telephone lines staffed by experts ready to answer employees’ questions, listen to their comments, and the like
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 19 Use Simple, Clear Language Using needlessly formal language imposes a serious barrier to communication Jargon Jargon: The specialized language used by a particular group (e.g., people within a profession) K.I.S.S. Principle K.I.S.S. Principle: A basic principle of communication advising that messages should be as short and simple as possible (an abbreviation for keep it short and sweet)
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 20 Information Overload
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 21 Improving Listening Skills
© Copyright Prentice-Hall 2004 22 Cross-Cultural Communication Learn local cultural rules Don’t take anything for granted Show respect for everyone Speak slowly, clearly, and in straightforward language Try to speak the local language – at least a little Beware of nonverbal differences
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