- It is derived from the word “communis”
This in Latin means common. It stands for the common activity of human beings of conveying
opinions feelings or information etc.
Communication is a process of passing information and understanding from one person to
another. ____ Keith Davis
Communication is any behaviour that results in an exchange of meaning
The American Management Association
Communication is the process by which information is passed between individuals and/or
organizations by means of previously agreed symbols
Business Communication: communication used to promote a product, service, or
organization; relay information within the business; or deal with legal and similar issues. It is
also a means of relying between a supply chain, for example the consumer and manufacturer.
At its most basic level, the purpose of communication in the workplace is to provide
employees with the information they need to do their jobs.Business Communication
encompasses a variety of topics, including Marketing, Branding, Customer relations,
Consumer behavior, Advertising, Public relations, Corporate communication, Community
engagement, Research & Measurement, Reputation management, Interpersonal
communication, Employee engagement, Online communication, and Event management..
Business is conducted through various channels of communication, including the Internet,
Print (Publications), Radio, Television, Ambient media, Outdoor, and Word of mouth.
Role of communication:
1.Healthy Organisational environment—Communication is to organisation as blood is to
human body.In an organisation many people from different background work together as
well as interact with outer agencies. Communications through perfect co-ordination binds
them and is an effective tool in reaching the goals.
2. Management- employee relationship– Communication helps the employees and the
management to develop links for better mutual understanding and encourage each other to
achieve their self-interest.
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3. External and Internal Communications Network—Communication between
management and employee is internal communication. It helps in the growth of the
company as many secret and often embarrassing incidence are kept within the company
and are not leaked to the media to avoid a negative image. Breakdowns and other job
assignment are reported on time and changes are done accordingly. Thus the business
thrives.similarly in external communications information about the product studies and
market analyses flows easily resulting into growth.with growing number of branches of
business houses all over the world the communication becomes the most effective tool in
4. Functionalisation– division of work into different kinds of duties is called
functinalisation.it leads to specialization Trainings with Specialized workers like engineers,
scientists ,accountants etc. help in the growth of business.
5. Helps to ease out the complexity of business—In a company, planning, finance, accounts,
purchase, production, advertising, marketing, store, sales, lab our-welfare, cultural activities,
are all handled by people who have unique skills and knowledge. all these different
departments collaborate to mange the business effectively through communications.
6. Solving labor problems– More employees are conscious of their rights than before. They
are organized into trade unions. Through effective communications between organization and
trade unions many lockouts and strikes are prevented.
7. For growing as multinationals—It helps in the expansion of business beyond boundaries,
as well as in understanding legal, political social, economic and educational environment.
Hence with globalization the importance of communications has increased many folds.
8. Helps in competition -- It is generally seen that the product which is promoted more
efficiently is the leader in the market. A company which keeps its communication links open
with it’s customers through proper feedback has the chance of evolving better than others.
9. It helps in better participation & delegation– Participative mangers communicate better
with its employees. They ask and give opinions, views and suggestions with others and work
together as a team. Delegations mean giving the rights of working n an independent
atmosphere to a certain prescribed limits. This provides a sense of involvement and satisfaction
to the workers and raises their moral.
1. Communication is the life blood of business organization.
2. Communication skill is an essential element in this new generation job.
3. Communication can help inform workers about the goals of a particular organization.
4. It may also help management to know the problems of workers and their grievances.
5. The purpose of communication management is the accessibility of information flow
from top management to bottom.
6. The development of the organization depends on its communication process.
Since each and every business process communication is inevitable. It is an exchange
of information and knowledge with the internal groups as well as stakeholders
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who have direct relationship with the organization, which will enhance the growth
of the organization.
7. If there is any change or business crisis, corporate communication plays a very vital
role to handle it effectively.
8. Communication is the cornerstone function of every organization to buildup its status in the
corporate world as well as its stakeholders.
Objectives / Purpose of communication
Managers need to be effective communicators to achieve positive results in today’s
Some of the purposes are –
Seeking or receiving information, encouragement, control, selling proposals,
Talking to different levels within the hierarchy – to individuals, to groups, to
departments – and externally to customers, suppliers, vendors, and other
Using both formal communication - Meetings, reports, proposals, notices; and
Informal communication - counseling, advising, talking to other employees.
Working in different roles: as Chairman, project leader, analyst, subordinate ,
Evaluating communications : are they facts, opinions, gossip
Building up networks to obtain real information which may be given freely or
concealed – which means you need to ask the right questions, or else you will find
yourself drowned in data but starved of information.
Trying to influence those over whom you have no power.
Main Purposes are
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Downward communication objectives
Education and training
On the job training
Warning and notice
Upward communication Objectives
Horizontal communication Objectives
Exchange of information
Social and emotional support
Elements of Communication:
Here are the various components of the communication process in detail.
Input. The sender has an intention to communicate with another person. This intention
makes up the content of the message.
Sender. The sender encodes the message, e.g. the idea of "piece of furniture to sit on"
Thus he gives expression to the content.
Channel. The message is sent via a channel, which can be made of a variety of
materials. In acoustic communication it consists of air, in written communication of
paper or other writing materials.
Noise. The channel is subjected to various sources of noise. One example is telephone
communication, where numerous secondary sounds are audible. Even a solid channel
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such as paper can be crushed or stained. Such phenomena are also noise in the
Receiver. The receiver decodes the incoming message, or expression. He "translates" it
and thus receives the
Output. This is the content decoded by the receiver.
Code. In the process, the relevance of a code becomes obvious: The codes of the sender
and receiver must have at least a certain set in common in order to make
Process of Communication
sender media receiver
Information Encoding Decoding Destination
Verbal Communication & Nonverbal Communication
Based on the channels used for communicating, the process of communication can be broadly
classified as verbal communication and non-verbal communication. Verbal communication
includes written and oral communication whereas the non-verbal communication includes
body language, facial expressions and visuals diagrams or pictures used for communication.
Verbal communication is further divided into written and oral communication. The oral
communication refers to the spoken words in the communication process. Oral
communication can either be face-to-face communication or a conversation over the
phone or on the voice chat over the Internet. Spoken conversations or dialogs are
influenced by voice modulation, pitch, volume and even the speed and clarity of
speaking. The other type of verbal communication is written communication. Written
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communication can be either via snail mail, or email. The effectiveness of written
communication depends on the style of writing, vocabulary used, grammar, clarity and
precision of language.
Face to face letter
Telephone conversation memo
Public speech circular
Group discussion minutes
Non-verbal communication includes the overall body language of the person who is
speaking, which will include the body posture, the hand gestures, and overall body
movements. The facial expressions also play a major role while communication since
the expressions on a person’s face say a lot about his/her mood. On the other hand
gestures like a handshake, a smile or a hug can independently convey emotions. Non
verbal communication can also be in the form of pictorial representations, signboards,
or even photographs, sketches and paintings
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Visual Symbols Body Language Para Language
Color facial expression voice
Graphs and charts smile volume
Maps eye contact pitch
Signs and Signals gestures speed
Auditory symbols postures pronunciation
(Sirens, whistles, bells, buzzers, beeps, tunes) clothing and appearance accent
Hand shakes tone
Energy non- fluencies
Types of Business Communication
One-way and two-way
Formal and Informal
Verbal and Non-verbal
Written and Oral
Intrapersonal and Interpersonal
Internal and External
Vertical and Horizontal
There are two types of business communication in an organization:
1. Internal Communication
2. External Communication
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1. Internal Communication
Communication within an organization is called “Internal Communication”.
It includes all communication within an organization. It may be informal or a formal
function or department providing communication in various forms to employees.
Effective internal communication is a vital mean of addressing organizational concerns.
Good communication may help to increase job satisfaction, safety, productivity, and
profits and decrease grievances and turnover.
Under Internal Business Communication types there come;
a) Upward Communication
b) Downward Communication
c) Horizontal/Literal communication
a) Upward Communication
Upward communication is the flow of information from subordinates to superiors, or
from employees to management. Without upward communication, management works
in a vacuum, not knowing if messages have been received properly, or if other
problems exist in the organization.
By definition, communication is a two-way affair. Yet for effective two-way
organizational communication to occur, it must begin from the bottom.
Upward Communication is a mean for staff to:
o Exchange information
o Offer ideas
o Express enthusiasm
o Achieve job satisfaction
o Provide feedback
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b) Downward Communication
Information flowing from the top of the organizational management hierarchy and
telling people in the organization what is important (mission) and what is valued
Downward communication generally provides enabling information - which allows a
subordinate to do something.
e.g.: Instructions on how to do a task.
Downward communication comes after upward communications have been
successfully established. This type of communication is needed in an organization to:
o Transmit vital information
o Give instructions
o Encourage 2-way discussion
o Announce decisions
o Seek cooperation
o Provide motivation
o Boost morale
o Increase efficiency
o Obtain feedback
Both Downward & Upward Communications are collectively called “Vertical
c) Horizontal/Literal communication
Horizontal communication normally involves coordinating information, and allows
people with the same or similar rank in an organization to cooperate or collaborate.
Communication among employees at the same level is crucial for the accomplishment
of work.Horizontal Communication is essential for:
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o Solving problems
o Accomplishing tasks
o Improving teamwork
o Building goodwill
o Boosting efficiency
2. External Communication
Communication with people outside the company is called “external communication”.
Supervisors communicate with sources outside the organization, such as vendors and
It leads to better;
o Sales volume
o Public credibility
o Operational efficiency
o Company profits
It should improve
o Overall performancee
o Public goodwill
o Corporate image
Ultimately, it helps to achieve
o Organizational goals
o Customer satisfaction
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Functions of Communication
One outline of the functions of Communication follows what might be thought of as a
rhetorical approach and is as follows:
Focuses more on needs:
Gaining Information (which often requires disclosing information; self-disclosure)
Building a Context of Understanding (via relationship messages that are a subtext of
many "content" messages).
Asserting identify (by adopting "roles" and creating and maintaining "face").
Social needs, including inclusion, control, and affection.
an expressive function when message creators focus on themselves
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a directive function when message creators focus on message consumers
a phatic (contact) function when message channels are concerned with message
a metalinguistic when codes are focused on codes
a contextual when settings are focused on settings
a poetic when message-forms are focused on forms
a referential when topics are focused on topics
a metacommunicative when events are focused on an event
Role on Nonverbal Communication
The major categories of nonverbal communications include the following (and will be
discussed in greater detail further):
personal space eye contact position
posture paralanguage expression
gesture touch locomotion
pacing adornment context
The Significance of Nonverbal Communications
Stated briefly, how something is expressed may carry more significance and weight than what
is said, the words themselves. Accompanied by a smile or a frown, said with a loud, scolding
voice or a gentle, easy one, the contents of our communications are framed by our holistic
perceptions of their context. Those sending the messages may learn to understand themselves
better as well as learning to exert some greater consciousness about their manner of speech.
Those receiving the messages may learn to better understand their own intuitive responses–
sometimes in contrast to what it seems "reasonable" to think.
Part of our culture involves an unspoken rule that people should ignore these nonverbal
elements– as if the injunction were, "hear what I say, and don't notice the way I say it." These
elements are often ignored in school or overridden by parents, so the task of incorporating
conscious sensitivity to nonverbal communications is made more difficult.
Of course the early therapists attended to such cues, but little was written about ways to really
bring such elements into sharper awareness until the work of pioneers such as Reich, Moreno,
and Perls. Even today many clinical training programs give short shrift to the task of really
acquainting their students with the nuances of this vital dimension. (I speculate that this is
because it is a very revealing study, and teachers need to feel remarkably secure in their own
persona, that way they come across to others.)
Nonverbal communication occurs not only between people, but also internally. People
grimace, stand in certain postures, and in other ways behave so as to reinforce to themselves
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certain positions, attitudes, and implicit beliefs. Unconsciously, they suggest to themselves the
role they choose to play, submissive or dominant, trusting or wary, controlled or spontaneous.
Thus, a therapist can use nonverbal behavior to diagnose intrapsychic as well as interpersonal
dynamics, and individuals can be helped to become aware of their own bodily reactions as
clues to their developing greater insight.
Learning by Doing
People and especially, people who work with or help other people–managers, teachers, etc.--
would do well to read about nonverbal communications. (It will also help to read Part 2, about
how to use experiential exercises to actually get the feel of a wide range of behaviors. This
adds a deeper level of understanding to mere intellectual knowledge.)
Categories of Nonverbal Communications
Personal Space: This category refers to the distance which people feel comfortable
approaching others or having others approach them. People from certain countries, such as
parts of Latin America or the Middle East often feel comfortable standing closer to each other,
while persons of Northern European descent tend to prefer a relatively greater distance.
Different distances are also intuitively assigned for situations involving intimate relations,
ordinary personal relationships (e.g., friends), social relations (e.g., co-workers or salespeople),
or in public places (e.g., in parks, restaurants, or on the street. (Keltner, 1970).
Eye Contact: This rich dimension speaks volumes. The Spanish woman in the Nineteenth
Century combined eye language with the aid of a fan to say what was not permissible to
express explicitly. Eye contact modifies the meaning of other nonverbal behaviors. For
example, people on elevators or crowds can adjust their sense of personal space if they agree to
limit eye contact. What happens if this convention isn't followed? (Scheflen, 1972.) This issue
of eye contact is another important aspect of nonverbal communication.
Modern American business culture values a fair degree of eye contact in interpersonal
relations, and looking away is sensed as avoidance or even deviousness. However, some
cultures raise children to minimize eye contact, especially with authority figures, lest one be
perceived as arrogant or "uppity." When cultures interact, this inhibition of gaze may be
misinterpreted as "passive aggressive" or worse.
Position: The position one takes vis-a-vis the other(s), along with the previous two categories
of distance between people and angle of eye contact all are subsumed under a more general
category of "proxemics" in the writings on nonverbal communications (Scheflen, 1963).
Posture: A person's bodily stance communicates a rich variety of messages. Consider the
following postures and the emotional effect they seem to suggest:
slouching stiff slumped
twisted (wary) cringing towering
crouching angled torso legs spread
pelvis tilt shoulders forward general tightness
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kneeling angle of head jaw thrust
Paralanguage: "Non-lexical" vocal communications may be considered a type of nonverbal
communication, in its broadest sense, as it can suggest many emotional nuances. This category
includes a number of sub-categories:
Inflection (rising, falling, flat...)
Pacing (rapid, slow, measured, changing...)
Intensity (loud, soft, breathy,... )
Tone (nasal, operatic, growling, wheedling, whining...)
Pitch (high, medium, low, changes...)
Pauses (meaningful, disorganized, shy, hesitant...)]
Facial Expression: The face is more highly developed as an organ of expression in humans
than any other animal. Some of these become quite habitual, almost fixed into the chronic
muscular structure of the face. For instance, in some parts of the South, the regional pattern of
holding the jaw tight creates a slight bulge in the temples due to an overgrowth or
"hypertrophy" of those jaw muscles that arise in that area. This creates a characteristic
appearance. The squint of people who live a lot in the sun is another example. More transient
expressions often reveal feelings that a person is not intending to communicate or even aware
of. Here are just a few to warm you up:
pensive amused sad barely tolerant
warning pouting anxious sexually attracted
startled confused sleepy intoxicated
Gesture: There are many kinds of gestures:
clenching fist shaking a finger pointing
biting fingernails tugging at hair squirming
rubbing chin smoothing hair folding arms
raising eyebrows pursing lips narrowing eyes
scratching head looking away hands on hips
hands behind head rubbing nose rocking
sticking out tongue tugging earlobe waving
These, too, have many different meanings in different cultures, and what may be friendly in
one country or region can be an insult in another (Morris et al, 1979, Maginnis, 1958).
Touch: How one person touches another communicates a great deal of information: Is a grip
gentle or firm, and does one hold the other person on the back of the upper arm, on the
shoulder, or in the middle of the back. Is the gesture a push or a tug? Is the touch closer to a
pat, a rub, or a grabbing? People have different areas of personal intimacy, and this refers not
only to the sexual dimension, but also the dimension of self control. Many adolescents are
particularly sensitive to any touching that could be interpreted as patronizing or undue
familiarity. Even the angle of one's holding another's hand might suggest a hurrying or
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coercive implicit attitude, or on the other hand, a respectful, gentle, permission-giving
approach (Smith, Clance & Imes, 1998, Jones, 1994).
Locomotion: The style of physical movement in space also communicates a great deal, as well
as affecting the feelings of the person doing the moving (Morris, 1977):
slither crawl totter walk
stroll shuffle hurry run
jog spring tiptoe march
jump hop skip climb
swing acrobatics swim slink
Pacing: This is the way an action is done.
jerky pressured nervous gradual
graceful fatigued tense easy
shaky deliberate furtive clumsy
A related variable is the time it takes to react to a stimulus, called "latency of response."
Some people seem to react to questions, interact in conversations, or are slower or faster "on
the uptake" than others.
Adornment: Our communications are also affected by a variety of other variables, such as
clothes, makeup, and accessories. These offer signals relating to context (e.g. formal vs.
informal), status, and individuality. The ways people carry cigarettes, pipes, canes, or relate to
their belts, suspenders, or glasses also suggests different semiotic meanings. (Semiotics is the
science of the emotional or psychological impact of signs, appearances–not words–that's
"semantics"-- but of how things look.)
Context: While this category is not actually a mode of nonverbal communication, the setting
up of a room or how one places oneself in that room is a powerfully suggestive action. Where
one sits in the group is often useful in diagnosing that person's attitude toward the situation.
Group leaders or psychodrama directors need to be especially alert to the way the group room
is organized. Consider the following variables and imagine how they might affect the
- amount and source of light
- color of the lighting
- obvious props, a podium, blackboard
- the size of the room
- colors of the walls, floor, furniture
- seating arrangements
- number of people present
- environmental sounds, smells, and temperature
- the numbers and ratios of high-status and low status people
- the positioning of the various people in the space,
who sits next to whom, who sits apart, who sits close, etc.
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Physiological Responses: This, too, is an exceptional category, because it cannot be practiced
voluntarily. Still, it's useful for therapists and group members to become more aware of these
subtle signs of emotion. It often helps to comment on these observations, as it implicitly gives
permission to the person experiencing the emotion to more fully open to that feeling; or,
sometimes, to more actively suppress it. Either way, the existence of that signal is made
explicit in the group process. Some of the clues to physiological processes include:
shaking flaring of nostrils trembling chin
sweating blanching cold clammy skin
blushing moisture in eyes flushing
blinking swallowing breathing heavily
While a few of these behaviors can be mimicked, for the most part these reactions happen
involuntarily. The only exercise is to watch for these reactions in oneself or others, at least
mentally note their occurrence, and consider what the meaning of that emotional reaction
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Organisational communication can be External Communication and Internal Communication.
Internal Communication is within the organisation, whereas, External Communication is the
communication with the external stakeholders of the organisation. The importance and the
purpose of the communication in organisation has been explained above.
Communication in organizations use two basic channels – formal and informal. Both are
important and both carry messages – sometimes reinforcing and sometimes conflicting –
throughout the organisation.
Formal channels are ones which have been set up by the organisation.
Messages flow in three directions : downwards, upwards and sideways . The downward
message consists primarily of information which is necessary for any staff to carry-out their
work, such as policies and procedures, orders and requests which are passed down the
appropriate level in the hierarchy.
Upward messages are reports, requests, opinions, complaints. Sideways messages are between
different departments, functions or people at the same level in the organisation.
There tend to be strict rules about the use of these formal channels. For communication to be
effective, all three channels need to be open and unblocked at all times. The upward channel is
the one which blocks most easily, and when this happens it is an indicator that an
organisation’s policies, procedures and employee relations need to be reviewed.
Informal Channels spring up by virtue of common interests between people in the organisation
– these interests may be caused by work, social or outside relationships.
The grapevine is very powerful channel. It has been estimated that managers receive over half
the information they need for planning purposes through the grapevine. Its messages may
frequently be distorted, but they often carry more credibility than those coming from the
formal channels. Informal channels become the only means of communication when the formal
channels become blocked or break-down.
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Dimensions of Organizational Communication
Communication to Internal Members
Public address system
Communication to External Members
Press handouts or Press release
Fairs and shows
Conference and Seminars
Networks in organization Communication
Networks are another aspect of direction and flow of communication. Bavelas has shown that
communication patterns, or networks, influence groups in several important ways.
Communication networks may affect the group's completion of the assigned task on time, the
position of the de facto leader in the group, or they may affect the group members' satisfaction
from occupying certain positions in the network. Although these findings are based on
laboratory experiments, they have important implications for the dynamics of communication
in formal organizations.
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In this type one person passes the information to others down the line of hierarchy, who
then passes it further down their own chain of authority. It allows only vertical movement,
up and down. The Chain can readily be seen to represent the hierarchical pattern that
characterizes strictly formal information flow, "from the top down," in military and some
types of business organizations.
In the wheel pattern, the person who occupies the centralized position or the hub of the
wheel co-ordinates all the information. All other communicate only with the central person
and not with the others. The central person solves problems and make decisions. The
Wheel can be compared with a typical autocratic organization, meaning one-man rule and
limited employee participation.
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The Y network
The Y network is a variation of the chain; it includes an example of formal communication
within a hierarchy such as the police force or civil force. Messages move vertically
between sub-ordinates and superiors in the hierarchy.
This kind of network allows each member of the group to interact with those on each side but
not with the others, members receive information from the side.
The All Channels Network
In this pattern, system allows every one to communicate with everyone else in the group. It
works best in the small groups. It is the least structured and, if the group is too large, tasks
can be delayed because of too much unstructured communication. The All-Channel
network, which is an elaboration of Bavelas's Circle used by Guetzkow, is analogous to the
free-flow of communication in a group that encourages all of its members to become
involved in group decision processes. The All-Channel network may also be compared to
some of the informal communication networks.
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Informal communication in organization
Grapevine is an informal channel of business communication. It is called so because it
stretches throughout the organization in all directions irrespective of the authority levels. Man
as we know is a social animal. Despite existence of formal channels in an organization, the
informal channels tend to develop when he interacts with other people in organization. It exists
more at lower levels of organization.
Grapevine generally develops due to various reasons. One of them is that when an organization
is facing recession, the employees sense uncertainty. Also, at times employees do not have
self-confidence due to which they form unions. Sometimes the managers show preferential
treatment and favour some employees giving a segregated feeling to other employees. Thus,
when employees sense a need to exchange their views ,they go for grapevine network as they
cannot use the formal channel of communication in that case. Generally during breaks in
cafeteria, the subordinates talk about their superior’s attitude and behaviour and exchange
views with their peers. They discuss rumours about promotion and transfer of other employees.
Thus, grapevine spreads like fire and it is not easy to trace the cause of such communication at
Examples of Grapevine Network of Communication
1. Suppose the profit amount of a company is known. Rumour is spread that this much
profit is there and on that basis bonus is declared.
2. CEO may be in relation to the Production Manager. They may have friendly relations
with each other.
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Pros and Cons of Grapevine Communication
Advantages of Grapevine Communication
1. Grapevine channels carry information rapidly. As soon as an employee gets to know
some confidential information, he becomes inquisitive and passes the details then to his
closest friend who in turn passes it to other. Thus, it spreads hastily.
2. The managers get to know the reactions of their subordinates on their policies. Thus,
the feedback obtained is quick compared to formal channel of communication.
3. The grapevine creates a sense of unity among the employees who share and discuss
their views with each other. Thus, grapevine helps in developing group cohesiveness.
4. The grapevine serves as an emotional supportive value.
5. The grapevine is a supplement in those cases where formal communication does not
Disadvantages of Grapevine Communication
1. The grapevine carries partial information at times as it is more based on rumours. Thus,
it does not clearly depicts the complete state of affairs.
2. The grapevine is not trustworthy always as it does not follows official path of
communication and is spread more by gossips and unconfirmed report.
3. The productivity of employees may be hampered as they spend more time talking
rather than working.
4. The grapevine leads to making hostility against the executives.
5. The grapevine may hamper the goodwill of the organization as it may carry false
negative information about the high level people of the organization.
A smart manager should take care of all the disadvantages of the grapevine and try to minimize
them. At the same time, he should make best possible use of advantages of grapevine.
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BARRIERS TO EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION
No matter how good the communication system in an organisation is, unfortunately barriers
can and do often occur. This may be caused by a number of factors which can usually be
summarised as being due to physical barriers, system design faults or additional barriers.
Types of barriers
Semantic and language barriers
Socio- psychological barriers
Cross culture barriers
Physical barriers are often due to the nature of the environment. Thus, for example,
the natural barrier which exists, if staff are located in different buildings or on different
Likewise, poor or outdated equipment, particularly the failure of management to
introduce new technology, may also cause problems.
Staff shortages are another factor which frequently causes communication difficulties
for an organisation.
Whilst distractions like background noise, poor lighting or an environment which is
too hot or cold can all affect people's morale and concentration, which in turn interfere
with effective communication.
System design faults refer to problems with the structures or systems in place in an
organisation.Examples might include an organisational structure which is unclear and
therefore makes it confusing to know who to communicate with.Other examples could
be inefficient or inappropriate information systems, a lack of supervision or training,
and a lack of clarity in roles and responsibilities which can lead to staff being uncertain
about what is expected of them.
Attitudinal barriers come about as a result of problems with staff in an organisation.
These may be brought about, for example, by such factors as poor management, lack of
consultation with employees, personality conflicts which can result in people
delaying or refusing to communicate, the personal attitudes of individual employees
which may be due to lack of motivation or dissatisfaction at work, brought about by
insufficient training to enable them to carry out particular tasks, or just resistance to
change due to entrenched attitudes and ideas.
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OTHER COMMON BARRIERS TO EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION INCLUDE:
Psychological factors such as people's state of mind. We all tend to feel happier and more
receptive to information when the sun shines.
Equally, if someone has personal problems like worries about their health or marriage, then
this will probably affect them.
Different languages and cultures represent a national barrier which is particularly important
for organisations involved in overseas business.
Individual linguistic ability is also important. The use of difficult or inappropriate words in
communication can prevent people from understanding the message.
Poorly explained or misunderstood messages can also result in confusion. We can all think of
situations where we have listened to something explained which we just could not grasp.
Physiological barriers may result from individuals' personal discomfort, caused, for example,
by ill health, poor eye sight or hearing difficulties.
Presentation of information is also important to aid understanding.
Regardless of titles, job descriptions, or education, all members of an organization must
How to overcome these Barriers
The art of active listening — how to ensure that they understand what their co-
workers are saying
Tips to remain professional in angry, emotionally-charged confrontations.
How to correct recurring problems in an organization's communication chain.
4 proven actions that build trust and rapport.
How to handle people who have difficulty listening to and understanding them.
A step-by-step plan to create better communication channels and create a "team
spirit" within a department, work group, or entire organization.
Reasons for human Barriers
1) You find it hard to get some people to cooperate.
2) Some people are being left out of the communication loop.
3) Replies to messages are being delayed or completely ignored.
4) Groups in the organization are failing to reach their goals.
5) Mistakes are cropping up more and more often.
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6) People are resorting more to criticism and placing the blame on other people.
7) Morale of teams is going down.
8) Productivity is dull or at zero level.
9) You receive many complaints.
10) Moments of conflict result in expressions of anger.
11) There is significant employee turnover.
12) Business is going to your competitors instead of
If you find that there are some or many (if not all) of these warning signs present in your
organization, it is advisable for you to take steps to address such problems before they kill your
How does one correct or resolve such problems? There are different steps to take to counter the
prevalence of communication problems in organizations.
1) First, listen to the people involved or who have caused the communication problem in the
first place. Doing so allows you to uncover the depth, nature and roots of the communication
problem for that particular group of people.
2) If the problems are quite vast and have deeply-rooted causes, you may want to secure the
help of a neutral negotiator. This third party may be able to get inside the problem more
thoroughly than an insider because when communication problems crop up, the group involved
may choose to clam up or point fingers rather than admit to their role in creating the problem.
3) To maintain confidentiality, it is possible to use a
tool such as a survey. People who might be scared to tell the truth because of reprisals would
then have another safer option compared to coming out of the crowd.
4) After you have uncovered the problem and its roots, you may choose to initiate group
counseling or training. The point of this is to address the problem of the group, rather than
focusing on just one person. Finger-pointing is avoided. The saying "united we stand, divided
we fall" should become the motto of the group.
5) It is important for the leader to have great communication skills so that communication
problems can be resolved. Communication skills are required to diagnose communication
problems, and naturally, provide the necessary solutions. Leaders who lack adequate
communication skills might benefit from more training in communication.
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Listening is the receiver’s activity in oral communication. As the speker is to make effort to be
understood, so the listener has the responsibility to be attentive to make effort to understand the
meaning of the speaker. Listening is the most important of all.
The Four Steps of Listening
Step 1: Hearing is the first step in the process. At this stage, you simply pay attention to make
sure you have heard the message. If your boss says, "McGillicudy, I need the CAD drawings
on my desk by Friday noon," and you can repeat the sentence, then you have heard her.
Step 2: Interpretation. Failure to interpret the speaker's words correctly frequently leads to
misunderstanding. People sometimes interpret words differently because of varying
experience, knowledge, vocabulary, culture, background, and attitudes.
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A good speaker uses tone of voice, facial expressions, and mannerisms to help make the
message clear to the listener. For instance, if your boss speaks loudly, frowns, and puts her
hands on her hips, you know she is probably upset and angry.
Step 3: Evaluation, you decide what to do with the information you have received. For
example, when listening to a sales pitch, you have two options: you choose either to believe or
to disbelieve the salesperson. The judgments you make in the evaluation stage are a crucial part
of the listening process.
Step 4: Respond to what you have heard. This is a verbal or visual response that lets the
speaker know whether you have gotten the message and what your reaction is. When you tell
the salesperson that you want to place an order, you are showing that you have heard and
believe his message.
Sources of Difficulty by the Listener
Being preoccupied and not listening.
Being so interested in what you have to say that you listen mainly to find an opening to get the
Formulating and listening to your own rebuttal to what the speaker is saying.
Listening to your own personal beliefs about what is being said.
Evaluating and making judgments about the speaker or the message.
Not asking for clarification when you know that you do not understand.
The Three Basic Listening Modes
1. Competitive or Combative Listening happens when we are more interested in
promoting our own point of view than in understanding or exploring someone else’s
view. We either listen for openings to take the floor, or for flaws or weak points we can
attack. As we pretend to pay attention we are impatiently waiting for an opening, or
internally formulating our rebuttal and planning our devastating comeback that will
destroy their argument and make us the victor.
2. In Passive or Attentive Listening we are genuinely interested in hearing and
understanding the other person’s point of view. We are attentive and passively listen.
We assume that we heard and understand correctly. but stay passive and do not verify
3. Active or Reflective Listening is the single most useful and important listening skill.
In active listening we are also genuinely interested in understanding what the other
person is thinking, feeling, wanting or what the message means, and we are active in
checking out our understanding before we respond with our own new message. We
restate or paraphrase our understanding of their message and reflect it back to the
sender for verification. This verification or feedback process is what distinguishes
active listening and makes it effective.
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Tasks of Listening
Usually it is important to paraphrase and use your own words in verbalizing your
understanding of the message. Parroting back the words verbatim is annoying and does
not ensure accurate understanding of the message.
Depending on the purpose of the interaction and your understanding of what is relevant,
you could reflect back the other persons:
Account of the facts.
Thoughts and beliefs.
Feelings and emotions.
Wants, needs or motivation.
Hopes and expectations.
Don’t respond to just the meaning of the words, look for the feelings or intent beyond
the words. The dictionary or surface meaning of the words or code used by the sender
is not the message.
Inhibit your impulse to immediately answer questions. The code may be in the form of
a question. Sometimes people ask questions when they really want to express
themselves and are not open to hearing an answer.
Know when to quit using active listening. Once you accurately understand the sender’s
message, it may be appropriate to respond with your own message. Don’t use active
listening to hide and avoid revealing your own position.
If you are confused and know you do not understand, either tell the person you don’t
understand and ask him/her to say it another way, or use your best guess. If you are
incorrect, the person will realize it and will likely attempt to correct your
Active listening is a very effective first response when the other person is angry, hurt or
expressing difficult feelings toward you, especially in relationships that are important to
Use eye contact and listening body language. Avoid looking at your watch or at other
people or activities around the room. Face and lean toward the speaker and nod your
head, as it is appropriate. Be careful about crossing your arms and appearing closed or
Be empathic and nonjudgmental. You can be accepting and respectful of the person and
their feelings and beliefs without invalidating or giving up your own position, or
without agreeing with the accuracy and validity of their view.
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“Principles for Effective Listening”
Pay attention and don’t interupt – I know that this is hard for many of us, myself
included at time, however, it is very important when dealing with items or issues in the
office, or meeting with a client or talking with anyone, in the office or not. Pay
attention to them and don’t interupt…one of the things that I have do to is bite my
tongue just a little to remind me that the other person is talking and it is not my turn.
Put yourself in the other person’s shoes – Put yourself in the other persons shoes
before you speak. When you do this, you may see things that you may have seen from
your side. Difficulties, challenges, situations that are not immediately seen when you
do not put yourself in the other person’s shoes.
Acknowledge their feelings – Yes, even in the office, emotions and feelings come into
play just like with your spouse, boyfriend/girlfriend – employees, partners and clients
all have feelings. It is important for you to acknowledge how they feel. It is also
important to do this with deflection (giving advice, interupting, changing the subject) or
interpretation. Some may call this reflecting back. In the sales game, they have been
teaching the art of reflecting back and I know that for some of us it is pretty
Find out what is most important- When you are discuss a challenge with someone,
many issues may be presented, however, you need to find out what the root cause of the
challenge is. Ask questions and seek further clarification, many of times the first thing
that pops out of the mouth of the person whose issue it is, is not the main issue, that just
maybe the tip of the iceberg. Continue to find out what the most important thing is.
Help them determine what they might do – Ask this important question “Is there
anything you would like me/us to do about what you have said?” Ask this question and
then be quiet once again. I know the silence may drive you nuts however it is
important, let the other person talk when they do speak, reflect back so that they hear
their own words and then ask if there is anything else you would like to say. It is
important for the person whose issues we are discussing closes the discussion.
Importance of Listening
Skilled listeners think about their purposes for having a conversation and make their choices
based upon those purposes. Valid business purposes for a conversation include:
To exchange information. In many conversations you will be talking about what someone
needs, or is offering. You may also be trying to figure out whether someone else has
complementary offerings or needs, for example, to figure out if one of you is a potential buyer
and one a potential seller. Finally, part of the exchange of information is often about whether
someone accurately understood what they heard.
To build working relationships. People who know and respect one another, and who have a
good experience working together, often work together more effectively. Personal style can
make an enormous difference. Developing and maintaining positive personal relationships can
be one of the most important components of customer-supplier conversations, employer-
employee conversations, networking conversations, team communication, and more.
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To feel good. Having an enjoyable and/or productive conversation can make you feel valuable,
respected, and even liked. As such, conversations can be a key component of having a good
day or even a good job, and of being motivated and productive.
To make someone else feel good. Good conversations can have the same effect on others as
they have on you. Whether or not you have a vested interest in someone's state of mind--such
as a customer, co-worker, or supplier--you may find merit in giving someone this experience.
For every conversation, and for every choice you make in that conversation, remind yourself:
my choices affect whether or not I best accomplish the purposes of this conversation.
Be aware of your choices.
At risk of stating the obvious, in conversations people generally take turns talking and
listening. Effective listeners are fully conscious of making a decision each time they decide to
talk or to let someone else talk. If you haven't already, you can develop this self-awareness and
reap its benefits.
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An interview is a conversation between two or more people (the interviewer and the
interviewee) where questions are asked by the interviewer to obtain information from the
Properly groomed and formally dressed
Good manners and conduct are necessary
Do not offer hand shake unless it offered by an interviewer
Do not sit until you asked to sit down
Handle the chair carefully
If you have large brief case put it on the floor near the chair
Do not put elbows or hands on the table
Maintain comfortable posture through out the interview
At the end of the interview , remember to thank the interviewers and wish themgood
Knowledge about the job and organisation
It is important that you know as much as possible about the job for which
you’re being interviewed. Have a look at explore types of jobs and, if
possible, speak to people already doing the type of work you are interested
in. Increasingly, employers are adding case studies of employees to their
websites and these can provide an interesting insight into the day-to-day
activities of certain roles.
Current events , should be up dated. Current affairs/commercial awareness
If you have prepared as thoroughly as you can in terms of thinking about yourself and your
skills, and researching into the employer and the job, and you have considered the practicalities
of getting to your interview, you should feel confident and positive.
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However, do not worry if you feel nervous or apprehensive before the interview or assessment
centre. Most people feel nervous in these situations and it manifests itself in different ways in
different people, which may include a dry mouth, shaky hands, a fast-beating heart,
sleeplessness, sweating, a squeaky voice, or several trips to the loo!
Remember that the interviewers are not expecting you to be perfect. They will be looking at
your future potential, and how their organisation could help you to develop. Interviewers want
to find out whether you have the ability, knowledge and motivation to fit into their organisation
and make a valid contribution.
Whilst some nerves may be inevitable, there are things you can do to prepare yourself
Arrange a practice interview with your careers adviser, or go through some typical
questions and answers with a friend.
Try to get a good night’s sleep the night before your interview. Perhaps have dinner a
little earlier than usual, and go to bed at a reasonable time.
Eat breakfast on the morning of your interview, even if your stomach feels like a
washing machine on spin cycle! You may have a long and intense day ahead, so
feeding your brain is important, and food should ultimately help to settle your nerves.
Try to drink plenty of water throughout the day, which will be better for you than
stimulants such as tea and coffee.
Breathe! Try taking a deep breath in, holding it for a few seconds, and then exhaling
fully, and then repeat this as necessary. There are lots of self-help books and CDs
available on topics such as breathing techniques, meditation, relaxation, and positive
visualisation. Find something that works for you.
Many university counselling services offer workshops on coping with anxiety or
overcoming nerves, and these are great for anyone worrying about interviews and
Think happy thoughts! These may be about your friends, your partner, your family, the
great goal you scored in last week’s match, or anything that makes you smile and puts
you in a positive frame of mind.
Remember that interviewers know that candidates will be nervous, and they are trained
to ease you into the interview with casual conversation and some initial icebreaker
questions. They will want you to be relaxed and be yourself, so that they can get a
better overall impression of you. They will also realise that a few nerves are a sign that
you really want the job!
Read your CV or application form again, thinking specifically about the qualities the employer
is looking for. Work out how best you can demonstrate these to the interviewer(s), and how
you can sell yourself at interview. Remember that they have shortlisted you for interview
because they are prepared to spend time finding out more about you.
In order to organise your thoughts, you could ask yourself questions such as:
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What does the job involve and why do I want it?
What qualities do I have that make me suitable?
Why did I choose my degree course?
What are my key strengths and development needs?
How would I like my career to develop?
What skills will I need and what skills have I gained from my work-related and
extracurricular activities? Think of examples.
Alternatively, try putting yourself in the interviewer’s place. What would you ask, and how
would you be convinced you had found the right person for the job?
Think about yourself and how you match up to the job specification. Most employers will
indicate the particular skills they want for an individual post and, in addition, there are core
skills which every employer is looking for.
Remember that the people you are competing with for the job, training scheme or course place
will probably have very similar academic backgrounds to your own, so you need to make the
most of your unique experiences and achievements. Do not undersell yourself. You can
identify your skills by considering the various areas of your life, such as your education, work
experience, interests, sport and voluntary work, and then listing which skills you may have
developed in each. This will help you to prepare evidence and think about your answers to the
competency-based questions you may be asked at interview.
Facing the interview
There is no better way of beginning the interview process than with a warm greeting to the
panelists. A cheery greeting coupled with a sunny disposition is a very effective ice-breaker.
Face the panel, but don’t fall of the chair in a headlong rush-and-skid attempt to tell your story.
Take one step at a time. If you place your foot on slippery ground, you could be ejecting out on
a free fall. So prepare, fortify your thoughts, re-jig your memory, and script and design your
story (without frills and falsity). Without the right preparation and storyboard, you could be a
loser at the interview.
1. Chronological Outline of Career and Education Divide your life into “segments”
defining your university, first job, second job. For each stage, jot down :
The reason for opting certain course or profession; Your job, responsibilities in your
revious/current job; Reason of leaving your earlier/current job. You should be clear in your
mind where you want to be in the short and long term and ask yourself the reason why you
would be appropriate for the job you are being interviewed for and how it will give shape to
your future course.
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2. Strengths and Weaknesses
You should keep a regular check on your strengths and weaknesses. Write down three (3)
technical and three (3) non-technical personal strengths. Most importantly, show examples of
your skills. This proves more effective than simply talking about them. So if you’re asked
about a general skill, provide a specific example to help you fulfill the interviewer’s
expectations. It isn’t enough to say you’ve got “excellent leadership skills”.
Instead, try saying:
“I think I have excellent leaderships skills which I have acquired through a combination of
effective communication, delegation and personal interaction. This has helped my team
achieve its goals.”
As compared to strengths, the area of weaknesses is difficult to handle. Put across your
weakness in such a way that it at least seems to be a positive virtue to the interviewer. Describe
a weakness or area for development that you have worked on and have now overcome.
3. answering questions:
Tell us about yourself.
What do you know about our company?
Why do you want to join our company?
What are your strengths and weaknesses?
Where do you see yourself in the next five years?
How have you improved the nature of your job in the past years of your working? Why should
we hire you?
What contributions to profits have you made in your present or former company?
Why are you looking for a change?
Answers to some difficult questions:
Tell me about yourself ?
Start from your education and give a brief coverage of previous experiences. Emphasise more
on your recent experience explaining your job profile.
What do you think of your boss?
Put across a positive image, but don’t exaggerate.
Why should we hire you? Or why are you interested in this job?
Sum up your work experiences with your abilities and emphasise your strongest qualities and
achievements. Let your interviewer know that you will prove to be an asset to the company.
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How much money do you want?
Indicate your present salary and emphasise that the opportunity is the most important
Do you prefer to work in a group?
Be honest and give examples how you’ve worked by yourself and also with others. Prove your
4. Questions to Ask
At the end of the interview, most interviewers generally ask if you have any questions.
Therefore, you should be prepared beforehand with 2-3 technical and 2-3 non-technical
questions and commit them to your memory before the interview.
Do not ask queries related to your salary, vacation, bonuses, or other benefits. This information
should be discussed at the time of getting your joining letter. Here we are giving few sample
questions that you can ask at the time of your interview.
Could you tell me the growth plans and goals for the company?
What skills are important to be successful in this position?
What’s the criteria your company uses for performance appraisal?
With whom will I be interacting most frequently and what are their responsibilities and the
nature of our interaction?
What is the time frame for making a decision at this position?
What made the previous persons in this position successful/unsuccessful?
Interviewers generally indicate when the interview is over.
Thank the interviewers.
Collect and pack all the papers and files quickly and neatly.
Get up gracefully, without scraping the chair
Wish then good day.
Walk away with good bearing
Shut the door carefully and noiselessly
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Interviews take many different forms. It is a good idea to ask the organisation in
advance what format the interview will take.
Competency/criteria based interviews - These are structured to reflect the
competencies or qualities that an employer is seeking for a particular job, which
will usually have been detailed in the job specification or advert. The
interviewer is looking for evidence of your skills and may ask such things as:
‘Give an example of a time you worked as part of a team to achieve a common
The organisation determines the selection criteria based on the roles they
are recruiting for and then, in an interview, examines whether or not you
have evidence of possessing these.
Recruitment Manager, The Cooperative Group
Technical interviews - If you have applied for a job or course that requires
technical knowledge, it is likely that you will be asked technical questions or
have a separate technical interview. Questions may focus on your final year
project or on real or hypothetical technical problems. You should be prepared
to prove yourself, but also to admit to what you do not know and stress that you
are keen to learn. Do not worry if you do not know the exact answer -
interviewers are interested in your thought process and logic.
Academic interviews - These are used for further study or research positions.
Questions are likely to centre on your academic history to date.
Structured interviews - The interviewer has a set list of questions, and asks
all the candidates the same questions.
Formal/informal interviews - Some interviews may be very formal, while
others will feel more like an informal chat about you and your interests. Be
aware that you are still being assessed, however informal the discussion may
Portfolio based interviews - If the role is within the arts, media or
communications industries, you may be asked to bring a portfolio of your work
to the interview, and to have an in-depth discussion about the pieces you have
chosen to include.
Scenior/case study interviews - These range from straightforward scenario
questions (e.g. ‘What would you do in a situation where…?’) to the detailed
analysis of a hypothetical business problem. You will be evaluated on your
analysis of the problem, how you identify the key issues, how you pursue a
particular line of thinking and whether you can develop and present an
appropriate framework for organising your thoughts.
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Specific types of interview
Face-to-face interviews - This may be one-to-one between you and the
interviewer, or you may sometimes find that there are two interviewers, such as
a functional specialist and a member of the resourcing or HR team.
Panel interviews - These involve several people sitting as a panel, usually with
a chairperson to coordinate the questions. This type of interview is popular in
the public sector.
Telephone interviews - Telephone interviews are increasingly used by
companies as an integral part of the recruitment process, often at an early
stage of selection. If you are offered a telephone interview, the most important
fact to remember is that the employer wants to find out the same information as
they would face-to-face, so your preparation needs to be just as thorough.
Group interviews - Several candidates are present and will be asked
questions in turn. A group discussion may be encouraged and you may be
invited to put questions to the other candidates.
Sequential interviews - These are several interviews in turn, with a different
interviewer each time. Usually, each interviewer asks questions to test different
sets of competencies. However, you may find yourself answering the same
questions over and over. If this does happen, make sure you answer each one
as fully as the time before
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