Sample Paper on Effective Communication within an Organization

Outline

            Following the desire for every organization to achieve its desired goals and objectives, it is important for organization’s managers to ensure that there exists proper and effective internal and external communication. Having effective communication helps organizations in ensuring that the required information is conveyed to their recipient in good time. As a result, organizations will be able to realize timely production. Effective communication within any organization is also essential in developing teamwork. Therefore, through proper and effective communication, organizational workers are free to interact by sharing ideas and their experiences in relation to their organizational duties. When such ideas are shared among workers, it improves their skills and experiences. Effective communication within the different organizations is also important in ensuring proper coordination among departments and other organs of the organization as well. Therefore, organizational managers need to make sure that all the requirements of effective communication are in place. It is also through effective communication that organizations are able to communicate with their customers. For instance, through effective communication, organizations find it easy to inform their customers about their products and services, the organization’s development, and some of the offers that the organization provides for their customers. Consequently, organizations should ensure that certain obstacles towards effective communication such as poor management strategies and employee discrimination should be avoided. This is important because it might result in employee turnover, poor production, or even closure of the organization. Hence, in the presence of poor communication, organizational managers need to ensure that they come up with a proper and effective approach to the problems should be gotten. For instance, they should promote the practice of proper coordination and relations among its employees. Otherwise, effective communication within any organization should be developed and maintained.

 Effective Communication

Successful communication within an organizational setting is vital in the achievement of the set objectives of the business, goals, missions, and vision as revealed by Kreps (2012). Active listening is part of the larger dimension of verbal communication cues. Listening is important in any organizational setup because it is possible to establish a strong foundation of a working relationship among staff members of the organization and the managerial body as a whole. The listening strategies are also fundamental in establishing strong relationships with suppliers, the consumer base, and the other chains of clientele (Brezuleanu et al, 2011). Effective active listening capabilities guarantee the extraction of information from the party one is involved in the communication, obtaining a clear understanding of the ideas they are trying to put forward. This makes the learning of new concepts inevitable.

The ultimate result is a positive impact in delivering the efficiency of duties in the organization, deriving improved results that do well to raise the profit and the revenue of the business entity (Kreps, 2012). Active listening skills can be bettered by according full and undivided attention to the second party taking part in the conversation and maintaining a considerable level of eye contact. Any extra activities should be avoided. Winding up of the conversation should be followed by a quick recap on the part of the listening party to probe the second party in the bid to try to validate if what they have understood is in perspective of what the informer meant to convey. This could be achieved by rephrasing some of the remarks used to ascertain whether the meaning derived was intended. Further confirmation could be done by asking relevant questions on the topic of discussion (Brezuleanu et al, 2011).

Excellent active listening skills demand very high levels of personal awareness, which is being conscious of one’s personal abilities to pay attention. In an organizational setup, members should strive to understand every message conveyed to them in completion, not just getting the words and not trying to make an effort to understand what they mean. Generally, effective listening can be achieved by paying full attention to the subject of discussion and acknowledging that one is listening which should be accompanied by positive feedback regarding the message conveyed (Brezuleanu et al, 2011). Paying attention involves direct eye contact, avoiding distractions in the shape of side conversations, and taking careful note of the elicited body language, which is vital in evaluating the weight of the intended information.

The informing party must get an assurance that you are listening, which can be ensured by a proper posture and the accompanying verbal or no-verbal cues like nodding. Relevant positive feedback must be given. Besides acquiring information, active listening also serves the purposes of developing trust with the organization, maintaining and guarding reputation, reducing conflicts, and giving employees proper motivation to keep them working continuously towards attaining the set goals (Brezuleanu et al, 2011). Understanding the motivating factors of employees is important in improving their productivity Developing trust is key to the formation of collaborations aiming at maximizing the strengths of each individual. Failing to listen to instructions given could amount to the collapse of a whole project. Listening is vital in creating and maintaining the organization’s reputation, paying attention to a customer’s demands could ensure their needs are met (Kreps, 2012). A misunderstanding as a result of poor listening is a common occurrence in many organizations, averting conflicts must therefore start from proper listening habits.

Organizational culture is important in determining successful communication within the organization set up. It entails the understanding of the strategies of the working environment, the ethical code of conduct, goals, mission, and vision of the entity. As a result, it serves to set the standards of operation for employees and a portrait of the organization to the environment in which it is located. The culture of an organization is an inseparable part of the ethical communication strategies in it (Barrette et al, 2009). It ensures that everyone within the organization maintains a social relationship after comprehending what is expected of him or her by the organizational code of ethics. Group learning, thus effective communication within the firm is made possible by the laid down rituals and the day-to-day practices, courtesy of the culture of the organization.

The culture of administering orientation to new employees ensures they get to familiarize themselves with the social environment around them, the interaction with personalities in higher hierarchies and the training, and induction procedures that they are made to undergo are all aimed to from a mainstream transition so that there is no strain between the new worker and any member of staff (Kreps, 2012). This also enables them to know the chain of command within the organization. Organizational cultures involving activities like get-together dinners inviting are aimed at building a social relationship among the employees and the management body. The overall result of this is effective communication that is free without any fear of overstepping one’s mandate. This makes it easy to give and take orders because proper courtesy levels are maintained through the free discussions that everyone gets involved in; without any exclusion (Barrette et al, 2009).

Organizational culture determines the manner in which people communicate, get involved with each other, and most importantly, the chain of disseminating information within the organization. The culture occasioned by proper ethical leadership strategies is inherent in the daily activities of the firm. Up to date cultures guarantee effective internal communication, ensuring that internal operations are carried out in a smooth manner without any conflict of interests (Barrette et al, 2009). The proper culture within an organization always ensures there are no conflicts because the communication that is given is accurate and follows the proper channels of dissemination according to the cultures spelled out. Communication that is in two ways enables for a free exchange of opinions making it certain that misunderstandings and conflicts that may arise as a result of a breakdown in communication are eradicated.

Distorted and outdated information within an organization usually leaves the recipients with a lot of guessing to do, a move that may a time causes differences within the organization among staff and the major players responsible for making decisions and setting the work strategies and methods (Kreps, 2012). In order to avoid such, an organization must spell out a culture that embraces sharing of information in a structured manner in a way that does not leave anyone guessing what may have been implied in the information. This minimizes any time wastage thus getting rid of any gaps that may arise in productivity when the employees spend time trying to find out what was communicated in the noticeboards on their own. The overall result is an increase in profit margins. A good culture should “give birth” to a communication system that makes the company have excellent relations with the external environment (Barrette et al, 2009).

Effective ethical leadership is tantamount to successful communication within an organization. Leaders play a key role in creating and maintaining the ethical culture of an organization that in turn ensures smooth communication strategies. Social learning theory is founded on the fact that individuals learn by observing and emulating behaviors, attitudes, and values of the people they look up to (Barrette et al, 2009). Followers look at their leaders as role models and mentors and thus the leader’s ethics will be reflected by the followers. A leader’s ethics is influenced by their individual characteristics, which affects how they make decisions.

Stouten (2013) categorizes leaders as ethical, unethical, hypocritical, or ethically neutral. Unethical leaders communicate that ethics do not matter. The hypocritical leader talks about ethics but their actions say otherwise. Ethically neutral leaders do not convey any message about ethics leaving their followers unsure of where they stand on moral issues. Such leaders tend to focus only on results and financial performance at the expense of ethics. Ethical leaders communicate strongly about ethics in both words and actions. They make ethical considerations a priority of the organization and inspire moral behavior in followers. Ethical leaders with a strong commitment towards ethical conduct and ethics are thus necessary for the development of an ethical organization considering their influence on followers (Barrette et al, 2009). People in leadership positions should never make any assumptions regarding how effectively they communicate their ideas and instructions during the delegation of duty. Some leaders often tend to misconceive the effectiveness of sharing information and by doing that ignore conveying a lot of information, most of which they deem irrelevant even when they would have helped avert so many impending storms.

Some leaders have stereotypical formed opinions that employees never comprehend complex issues, if they may bear any interest in them at all. Others have formed a habit of skipping some information, terming them minor. For the success of an organization, the leadership strategies must be aimed at developing a system of trust with the employees so that any detail is shared with them (Kreps, 2012). Transparency is vital in ensuring that people get to know what they sign up for. Thus, concealing any information is bound to cause chaos on the realization by the people from whom they are withheld. Employees must be told everything plainly, so they get to decide what is major and what is minor. Some leaders make the assumption that employees usually only want to hear positive news; this is an underestimation, which must be avoided (Barrette et al, 2009).

Some of the employees may possess understanding capabilities that may even supersede that of the leaders. With achieving a successful communication model within the organization, leaders should employ them more involving approach that seeks the opinion of their staff members because most of the decisions they make and the information they pass, solely entail the internal operation of the organization, which is a responsibility of the employees, not the management. In this way, there cannot be any strain in the communication network between the employees and the management (Barrette et al, 2009). Leadership should not just reserve all functions for themselves; they should sub-divide the organization into branches and have a head for each so that information follows a distinct and traceable channel from the head office through the human resource to the various sub-branches. This bureaucracy would make it easy for the employees to table their concerns.

Conflicts are inevitable in any organization with many people because opinions must always vary. A conflict is an interaction involving two or more groups of people with ideas or opinions, which do not coincide. In the event of a conflict, a proper resolution needs to be achieved in order to restore and maintain successful communication within the organization. Conflicts must be amicably resolved so that the parties involved get back to talking terms for the good of productivity within the organization (Lam & Chin, 2009). Conflicts coined around legal issues necessitate the inclusion of a mediator with professional clearance so that the issues are quietly resolved without necessarily having to resort to legal redress. Normal differences at work can be resolved by a neutral facilitator during which calm needs to be maintained in the bid to find a solution.

Most of the office time of managers is spent attending to issues relating to personnel, therefore, there needs to be a setup that discretely deals with arising concerns at a firm that may usually result in conflicts if not addressed soon enough. The competing ideas have a negative influence of interfering with the attainment of the goals of an organization as found by Kreps (2012). A conflict involving different departments is bound to cut off the communication channels existing between or among them; resulting in a situation where each department works independently of the other. Such a clash of functions is detrimental to the organization. Proper resolutions must thus be sought soon enough to restore smooth operations. Nearly all conflicts are dysfunctional, they result in frequent bust-ups among employees making them inflexible with an ultimate result of diminished communication (Lam & Chin, 2009).

There are some essential principles of human communication that must be put into consideration in the bid to establish a successful base of communication within an organization. The source of the information generates the message meant to be conveyed. The channel is the pathway way through which the information embedded in the messages follows from the source to the recipient. Any interference should be avoided because they may have the effect of distorting the message, leaving the recipient guessing what was intended to be conveyed in the original message (O’Donnell & Hargie, 2011). Feedback is the message that the receiver relays back to the source to show acknowledgment of acceptance of the information. The feedback needs to be in the context of the subject matter of the information conveyed; otherwise, it may be perceived that the original information was compromised thus distorted while in transit from the sender or source to the receiver.

The source or sender of the message must know the audience they intend to address so that they can choose their language accordingly and the context in which the message is to be delivered (Kreps, 2012). The purpose of the information, thus the topic, must be correctly determined to avoid digressing; the message needs to be concise, straightforward to the point to avoid any event of misconception. The reaction that the information conveyed is likely to elicit from the receiver should be projected beforehand so that should it be a negative one, bust-ups can be avoided (O’Donnell & Hargie, 2011). The environment and the state of mind in which the persons to whom the message is intended really need to be considered and the information conveyed must be consistent throughout, thereby maintaining integrity.

The type of communication model used to convey information in an organization is sufficient to determine the success or failure of the communication system. Informal communication may result in many problems given the fact that it is never conveyed in an official manner, basically, it is the grapevine. It revolves around the social interactions existing among the members of the organization and is never in agreement with the channels the authorities use to convey information within the organization. Most of the information conveyed informally is never in writing, making its confirmation virtually impossible. It is a type of information that is very spontaneous, just arising from nowhere, usually from a small group of people, and diverges to a wider zone to reach all members of the organization. It should therefore be avoided in an organization since it can disorient the whole communication system (Levenberg & Caspi, 2010).

Informal communication is official and usually in writing. Often, it carries messages regarding the activities of the organization. It could also be verbal, but the person charged with the responsibility of disseminating the verbal information must be authorized. A copy of the written material is usually filed for if any future references may be made. Formal communication occurs in a hierarchical order of the formal channels. In most cases, information flow from the managing director of an organization down to the employees through the main human resource manager and the various departmental heads. This is a bottom-up downwards type of conveying information in an institutional setup. Horizontal formal communication may also take place; for the instance, two departments of similar hierarchical standing disseminate information between them. This is therefore the mode of communication of choice in ensuring that a successful communication system is achieved and maintained (Levenberg & Caspi, 2010).

References

Barrette, J., Lemyre, L., Corneil, W., & Beauregard, N. (2009). Organizational learning among senior public-service executives: An empirical investigation of culture, decisional latitude and supportive communication. Canadian Public Administration, 50(3), 333-353.

Brezuleanu, C., Brezuleanu, S., & Ignat, G. (2011). study about importance of effective listening in communication of educational management. Agronomy Series of Scientific Research / Lucrari Stiintifice Seria Agronomie, 54(2), 344-347.

Ertekin, Z. Ö., & Atik, D. (2012). Word-of-mouth communication in marketing: An exploratory study of motivations behind opinion leadership and opinion seeking. METU Studies in Development, 39(3), 323-345. Retrieved from http://www.search.proquest.com/docview/1285490310?accountid=45049

Kreps, G.L. (2012, March 11). Communication in Organizations. Retrieved from: http://www.search.proquest.com/business/docview/216344072/4A3048EFF04240FFPQ/4?accountid=45049

Lam, P. K., & Chin, K. S. (2009). Identifying and prioritizing critical success factors for conflict management in collaborative new product development. Industrial Marketing Management34(8), 761-772.

Levenberg, A., & Caspi, A. (2010). Comparing Perceived Formal and Informal Learning in Face-to-Face versus Online Environments. Interdisciplinary Journal of E-Learning & Learning Objects, 6(2010), 323-333.

O’Donnell, A., & Hargie, O. (2011). Dealing with the dark side of sectarianism in northern irish organisations: Guiding principles on intergroup workplace communication. Australian Journal of Communication, 38(1), 21-43. Retrieved from http://www.search.proquest.com/docview/1508457926?accountid=45049