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Flashcards in Chapter 13 communication Deck (33):

what is effective communication?

Effective communication is the exchange of information between people or groups, with feedback


What are the key features of effective communication?

1 There is a sender (or transmitter) of the message
2 The message is clear
3 An appropriate medium (the way in which the message is sent) is used
4 There is a receiver
5 There is feedback to confirm receipt and understanding


Why is effective communication important? p1

1 Staff motivation – and thus labour productivity. If staff are encouraged to participate through group discussion, for example, then effective communication will aid motivation. Workers feel out of touch and isolated if there is poor communication.
2 The number and quality of ideas generated by the staff – if staff are asked for their ideas, then this can assist with problem solving


Why is effective communication important? p2

1 Speed of decision making – the more people who have to receive and react to a message, then the slower will be the decision-making system
2 Speed of response to market changes – if changes in consumers’ decisions take a long time to be communicated to the decision makers at the head of an organisation, then the business will be slow to respond with appropriate products
3 Reduces the risk of errors – incorrect understanding of a poorly expressed message will lead to incorrect responses
4 Effective coordination between departments


what is communication media?

Communication media are the methods used to communicate a message


what are the available media of communication?

1 Oral communication
2 Written communication
3 Electronic media
4 Visual communication


Oral method of communication advantages?

1 Direct
2 Can be varied to suit needs of receiver
3 Easy to understand
4 Can be questioned quickly


Oral method of communication disadvantages?

1 Need to listen carefully
2 Affected by noise
3 No permanent accurate record
4 Can be quickly forgotten


Written method of communication advantages?

1 Recorded – permanent record
2 More structured
3 Easy to distribute
4 Cannot be varied
5 Can be referred to again


Written method of communication disadvantages?

1 Often difficult to read
2 Message identical to each receiver
3 No body language
4 Feedback slower
5 No immediate response
6 May be misinterpreted
7 Costly and time consuming


Electronic method of communication advantages?

1 More interactive
2 Demands attention
3 Often easier to remember
4 Creates greater interest


Electronic method of communication disadvantages?

1 Needs close attention
2 Sometimes too fast
3 Not always clear
4 Interpretations by receivers can vary


Visual method of communication advantages?

1 Great speed
2 Interactive
3 Creates interest
4 Encourages response
5 Ignores boundaries
6 Good image for external communication


Visual method of communication disadvantages?

1 Cannot always be received
2 Relies on receiver
3 Is expensive in hardware
4 Risk of communication overload
5 Can be intercepted
6 Diminishes personal contact


what are the factors to consider before choosing the communication method?

1 The importance of a written record that the message has been sent and received, for example an important new legal contract
2 The advantages to be gained from staff input or two-way communication, for example a new staff shift system proposal could be discussed with workers before implementation
3 Cost – electronic media often require expensive capital resources. The cost of management time in meetings should not overlooked – it would be quicker and cheaper, but much less effective, to email all those at the meeting instead


what are communication barriers?

Communication barriers are reasons why communication fails

Any factor that prevents a message being received or correctly understood is termed a ‘barrier to communication’.


what are the three broad reasons why barriers to communication occur?

1 Failure in one of the stages of the communication process
2 Poor attitudes of either the sender or receiver
3 Physical reasons


1. Failure in one of the stages of the communication process?

1 The medium chosen might be inappropriate
2 If a receiver forgot part of a long message given to him orally, then a written version would have been more appropriate
3 A misleading or an incomplete message would result in poor understanding
4 If there is too much information
5 If the channel of communication is too long – this problem is particularly significant in large organisations


2 Poor attitudes of either the sender or the receiver

1 If the sender is not trusted – perhaps because of previous misleading messages or unpopular decisions – then the receiver may be unwilling to listen to or read the message carefully
2 Unmotivated or alienated workers make poor receivers
3 Intermediaries – those on the communication channel – may decide not to pass on a message, or to change it, if they are poorly motivated
4 The sender may have such a poor opinion or perception of the receiver that no effort is made to ensure clarity of message or to check on understanding


3. Physical reasons

1 Noisy factories are not the best environment for communication. This indicates that the poor quality of the external environment can limit effective communication.
2 Geographical distance can inhibit effective communication – certainly interpersonal communication will be very difficult. Modern electronic methods, such as video conferencing are designed to overcome some of these problems.


what are the steps managers should take to minimize communication barriers?

1 Ensure the message is clear and precise, but adequately detailed
2 Keep the communication channel as short as possible
3 Make sure that channels of communication are clear to all involved
4 Build in feedback to the communication process so that problems with receipt or understanding of the message can be checked quickly
5 Establish trust between senders and receivers – this could be most easily achieved in a business where the culture is to accept all staff as being important and as having useful contributions to make
6 Ensure that physical conditions are appropriate for messages to be heard or received in other ways


what are Formal communication networks?

Formal communication networks are the official communication channels and routes used within an organisation

The internal communication structure of a business can be organised in a number of different ways


Formal communication networks methods?

1 The chain network
2 The vertical network
3 The wheel network
4 The circle
5 The integrated or connected network


what is The chain network method?

The chain network is typically used in a hierarchical structure, such as the police, army and civil service. One person, at the top, starts off the communication message and this is passed on to the next person on the lowest level. This is designed for authoritarian leaders


advantages of The chain network method?

this method does give the leader control and allows an overview, from the top of the organisation, of the communication system


disadvantages The chain network method?

. It remind us of the weakness of both long chains of command and one-way communication. It does not encourage wither two-way communication or horizontal communication and individuals at the end of the chain can feel isolated and demotivated


The vertical network method?

The vertical network. The ‘boss’, probably the owner, has four subordinates and communicates with them directly but individually – there is no group network here. This method could be used in a small department or any situation with a narrow span of contro


The wheel network method?

The leader is at the centre – or the person at the centre becomes the leader. There could be two-way communication between the leader and each of the other parts of the wheel, but horizontal communication is poor. The leader is in control and can limit formal contact between the others. This network might represent the situation of a regional manager communicating to each of the branch or site managers.


The circle network method

In this network, each person or department can communicate with only two others. Although it is a decentralised network – there is no obvious leader – it might be difficult for all members of the circle to agree a new strategy between them, because of the slow rate of communicating with the whole group. These methods do not allow the receiver to question the message, to ask for further explanation or to discuss it with the sender. There is no assurance for the sender that the message has been received, understood and acted upon.


The integrated or decentralized network method?

This allows full two-way communication between any one group member – or with all of them. It is typical of team meetings or ‘brainstorming sessions’. It allows a participative style of decision making. It could assist in solving complex problems where input from all group members is needed.


what is Informal communication?

Informal communication is unofficial channels of communication that exist between informal groups within an organisation


down side to informal communication?

1 It wastes valuable working time
2 It spreads gossip and rumours and these can be unsettling and lead to feelings of insecurity
3 It may result in informal groups banding together to resist management decisions – even though they may not have been officially communicated yet


advantages of informal communication?

1 All informal communication can help create important feelings of belonging and social cohesion
2 Management can use the grapevine to ‘test out’ new ideas and see what the unofficial reaction might be – if it is too negative, they might never make an official announcement