Fundamentals of Communication
In this chapter we will discuss:
• The Importance of Communication
• The Basic forms of Communication
• The Process of Communication
• Barriers to Communication
• Dealing with Communication Barriers
Communication is the process of transferring meanings. In a business setting this process sometimes accounts for the difference between success and failure and also profit and loss. This fact is now being recognized by both the corporate community and business schools. In a 1984 Harvard Business Review poll of practitioners and academicians, both groups felt that the oral and written skills of MBAs required a great deal of ...view middle of the document...
Most successful people recognize the role communication skills have played in their career. In a survey of college graduates in a wide variety of fields, most respondents said that communication was vital to their job success. Most, in fact, said that communication skills were more important than the major subject they had studied in college.
Helping the Organization
By improving your communication skills you help not only yourself but the entire organization. That’s because as an employee you form a link in the organization’s information chain. Your ability to receive, evaluate, use, and pass on information gathered from inside and outside the organization affects your company’s effectiveness. Managers rely on such information from their employees to take suitable and necessary action.
Communication per se can also help an organization by boosting employee morale. By keeping employees informed about what is going on, involving them in decision making, and getting feedback from them regarding their opinions attitudes and suggestions, managers can raise employee morale. As a result, employees are more willing to assume responsibility and support management’s efforts.
|The basic forms of communication |
Communication is essential for the functioning of an organization. Every day a vast amount of information flows from managers to employees, employees to managers, and from employee to employee. Apart from this internal communication, a considerable amount of information is also carried in and out of the organization.
This communication, internal and external, takes place in a nonverbal and verbal manner: through gestures, expressions, meetings, listening, speaking and writing.
The most basic form of communication is nonverbal communication: all the cues, gestures, vocal qualities, spatial relationships, and attitudes toward time that allow us to communicate without words. These nonverbal cues are used to express superiority, dependence, dislike, respect, love and a host of other feelings and attitudes.
Nonverbal communication differs from verbal communication in fundamental ways. For one thing, it is less structured, which makes it more difficult to study. You can’t just pick up a book on nonverbal language and master the vocabulary of gestures that are common in a particular culture. Nonverbal communication also differs from verbal communication in terms of intent and spontaneity. We generally plan our words, so when we say something we have a conscious purpose. However, when we communicate nonverbally, we sometimes do so unconsciously. We don’t mean to raise an eyebrow or blush - those actions come naturally. Without our consent, our faces express our emotions.
Nonverbal cues are especially important for conveying feelings. One reason for the power of nonverbal communication is its reliability. Most people can deceive us...