Communication is the cornerstone
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Introduction (executive summery)
Communication is the cornerstone of any successful business and is one of the very most important and unavoidable part in a modern business organization. Success of an organization depend upon a very high extend on the effective internal and external communication of the organizations. In present scenario, if there is a change to be happened in an organization it should be reached to each and every member of the organization which will add up to the success of the company .this is achieved through proper communication. An effective internal communication helps the manager to handle their employee smoothly and professionally. In this assignment we are discussing about various situation and stages of managerial communication and challenges faced by managers while dealing with different changes happening in organizations.
Types of communication used in an organization
External communication:external communication is referred to the communication of a organization with external world or public, it may be about their new product, about their shares, new, research and development and even new events organised by a organization. External communications are reached to the public in different Medias such as advertisement, news, websites etc.
Internal communication: external communication is the communication happening with in the company with the members of the company. It should be very effective or the company may fall to achieve its goals. It is the process before external communication usually. It may happen between the higher members to the lower members through a series of procedures, it is not required two individual speak in order to hand over the massage. Newsletters, company portal, website, meeting, employee gathering are some examples through which internal communication can be implemented. It can be happened between two teams of same organization in different counties, when such international communications are usually done by the help of internet and telecommunication systems.
Some other mode of communications
Formal communication:this type of communication generally takes through the formal channels of the firm which is established by the organization. formal communication are generally written and can take forms,manuals,policy etc. the formal communication has its own advantages such as it will help to maintain the authority relationship in a firm and also disadvantages such as it is a time consuming process
Informal communication: Communication that happens outside the formal channels in an organization. Informal communications does not follow the same path as that of formal communication. Informal communications gives more importance to relationships within the organisation. Managers could be your close friend and most of the time you could make your suggestions as if he is your friend in an informal communication.
success of a company depend up on the various communication methods of the manager to a very high extend for example Assume that If there is a change in the timing of the operations of a company, to implement this change there are certain challenges to the manger as it is will change the day today routine of the employees. This can be solved by an effective internal communication between the manager and the employees.
Communication handled in different level
Communication is happened randomly in a business organization even though there are certain area which certain messages are only kept in a top- level but not all level such as middle -level and lower- level.
It is not required to share all information with every members of the company, to be more specific top level strategies may not be shared with the lower level employees as it may indirectly cause damage to the company
For example, assume that ownership of a company is to be changed, in this case after the deception is made it will not be told to the lower level workers in the company because it may lead to various strikes and the situation may go worse, some employees may even resign from the company. This may lead to rejection of the proposal from the other company. This is the case of communication happening in the top level managers, and at any cost this kind of information shouldn't be communicated among the lower level of employees at an early stage.
Now we will see an example of communication held between top level and middle level management, assume that pricing of products of a company is changing, this kind of decisions will be communicated among the top-level and the middle level management. The various aspects and impacts of the decision will communicated to the middle level managers by the top level managers, this is discussed between the top level mangers and the middle level managers but not to the lower level workers, as it is not required to share all information with every members of the firm.
And for the last case, where a proper communication from top-to-bottom is needed, we could take the example of salary for the workers in a manufacturing company. Decisions of this kind cannot be taken by the top-level or middle level management alone. They need to seek the opinion of the union leaders before coming to a conclusion on decisions like this, as this kind of decisions can affect the proper functioning of the company. So it is important to seek the opinion of the labourers and to know what the workers are expecting.
Effective internal communication and different communication support
As shown in the above diagram the managing director comes in the top most position (top -level)and then comes the sales and marketing, production directors, human resources directors, finance director, comes in (middle- level) they communicate to the managing director and then comes factory manager, quality control manager(lower- level) who report to the production director, Management accountant and financial accountant (lower level) report to the finance director as well. After this comes factory workers who work in production process of various products.
Above explained is the main internal structure of an organization if a change is planned by the company in its normal routine the first level decision is taken by managing director and middle level managers. It is the duty of the middle level managers to inform the lower level employees about new decision; the middle level manager usefully hands over the information to the union leaders and finally reaches the workers.
Communication supports: if a change has to be implemented in a company it should be communicated with in the members of the company it can be done using various methods according to the size of the firm. If the organization is small it is easy to communicate to all employees affectively by methods such as group meetings or group gatherings etc, if the size of the firm is big then various communication systems are used rather than team meetings or team gatherings. Now we can discus about various communication supports used in a company in order to achieve affective internal communication of them are as follows:
- employee portals
- by meeting
- by group gathering
- intra website
- sending news letters
For an effective communication it depends on the nature of the organisation/company. If it's a manufacturing company and you are trying to use the employee portals and intranet website for implementing effective communication, then that kind of decision will be a strategic failure. Because the employees in such kind of company will not flexible using computers and won't be familiar with the internet age. In such kind of situations it is necessary that the middle level managers informing the decisions to Union leaders in a meeting and later these union leaders are communicating the decisions with the union members.
In an IT organisation communication can be effectively implemented by deploying intranet websites, employee portals, sending newsletters as the emails. It's the employee culture that they used to check their emails & intranet portals regularly before starting their work. Updating the change information in an employee notice board will be a good way of communication among all kind of industries.
So it depends on the nature of organisation to choose which way will be better to communicate among the different hierarchy levels in an organisation.
Impact of change in communication process
A change in the organisation will affect the process of communication to a high extend. And so is important to manage the change properly so it won't affect the communication flow within an organisation. Considering in a present scenario as example, assume that a manager is resigning from a firm, and a new manger is been appointed this change will definitely cause difference in normal play of the organization. as changes are mostly rejected by the employees it will take time to adjust with the new manager and this will lead the new managers job challenging one, if the manager communicate in proper track this problems can be solved .if the manager is having the skill to deal with situation he can overcome this challenges. Hence the impact of change will affect the various aspect of an organization. So it is important to implement a “Change Management” policy within the organisation. Change Management policy should be in such a way that all the information regarding the work should be properly documented so that a new manager replacing the existing manager won't have that many difficulties in carry on with the normal operations. This is the case with a manager replacing an old manager.
If we consider the change management in a network support organisation, any change made to the hardware configuration should be done via a change management policy, as this will be communicated among all the team members working in that particular project. So an effective communication can be established among all the team members and other person responsible in the project.
This is one way to handle a change in the communication process within an organisation.
Obstacles or challenges and their solutions in context of change
There exist many obstructers or challenges which will affect the smooth running of a firm; they may be communication gap between the managers and employees, between top level management and middle level management. This can be overcome by the following methods
Newsletter and other information such as intranet website may not be usually used by all employees at all circumstances. So it is better to implement a desktop policy, such as making the company intranet website as the default webpage in the internet browsers, such a policy will enable employees to look at the website whenever they open the internet browsers. Make a rule in a company that all the members should check or visit their employee portals, newsletters, and other information sources.
For example assume there is change in sections of employees to communicate this information the managers can use different methods such as newsletters, company website, employee portals and many other, if an employee is not checking his mail or failing to see the portals in some circumstances and come to different work site rather than going to right work site the position mend for him will be vacant at the time and it will lead the company to loss.
In some cases, whether employee ignorance to the newsletters and employee portals, the management can make them read the newsletter and ask the employees to give them a compulsory feedback. This will enforce the employees to go through the newsletters and the intranet portals on a regular basis. Also you can give rewards to the employees for the best feedback, so they will have an interest to read about the company.
Challenges met when dealing with an international team.
The main two mode of communication with the international team is over the phone, emails & instant messaging. In all these three cases we are very much dependent on the Telecommunication & Internet service provider. If anything goes wrong with the service provider's link then we will lose contact with the international team, since they are not communicating face to face, there will be a small communication gap, and it is difficult to establish effective communication between international teams.
To a certain extent we could avoid this problem with the help of video conference meetings. But still we are dependent on the external service provider to get this done effectively. Appointing a group of staff in our company who are in contact with international team during the work hours of the international team may help in maintaining the communication gap to certain extends.
For example assume that a particular products price is to be changed internationally and they have decided in a meeting to implement this to its other sister concerns in other country, if this have to be communicated effectively this can be done by the above mentioned procedures.
Time constraints in different geographical location are a major challenge dealing with the international teams. Suppose there are two teams working on a project and one team based in UK and one team based in India, there is a major time challenge between the countries. To avoid this challenge one of the team should work in parallel with the other countries time zone. It is the responsibility of the project manager asking the employees to work in the time zone of the other country. This will help the teams maintaining a proper communication between the two teams and will help the two teams in maintaining the level of progress of the project.
Manager's role in communication in context of change.
- When a change is happened in an organisation it is the duty of the manager to verify that if the internal communication is successful or not.
- if the communication is not complete the manager has make sure it has reached every one, this is one of most imported step in by a manger which will help the company to grow more rapidly and smoothly.
- Manager has to see that the employees are checking their mails, website and portals regularly
- He has to make sure that all employees are one time for group meeting and group gathering in various occasions, at which various information's about the changes of the firms are discussed
- Change policy should be implemented in firm so that it will help the new mangers to run the firm smoothly and professionally.
For example assume that if salary of workers are going to be decreased due to credit crunch the employees will protest against this, at this time it is the power of a manager comes in to action, that he can console the workers about explaining the situation globally as many lower level employees may not be much educated, and he can tell them the upcoming future of the company and can give them promises that the will be paid once the company reaches its success
After analysing various situations and levels through which a manager moves it is understood that effective internal communication is one of the most impotent and unavoidable aspect of an organization which lead the organization to success, and a role of manager dealing with this in different changing environment is a challenging process, as a manager there might be certain situations you need to be informal while dealing with certain cases, hence the role of informal communication is also important and it is the skill of a manager to deal with all various situation in order to archive the goal of the organization.