|Essay type:||Process essays|
|Categories:||Communication Organizational behavior Information systems|
Communication refers to conveying messages from one party to another through writing or speaking and using some medium. It is a vital component for any organization and must be handled with great care to ensure its success. Communication is a process undertaken in specific steps and stages, through which the sender and the receiver exchange the intended information (Bowman & Branchaw, 2008). In the organizational setting, there must be clear communication channels and processes that will help everyone understand every bit of information passing across the organization (Alvesson, 2013). The primary functions of management, like planning and leading, succeed on the foundation of efficient and effective communication. Therefore, a firm’s management must always be precise that proper communication has no substitute. Understanding the communication process in its entirety is the bedrock of making the right communication decisions.
The simple definition of the communication process is the steps that one takes to pass a message successfully. As a process, it happens in different stages that all play a significant role in ensuring the effectiveness of the communication. From transmission of the message from the sender to the receiver, the receiver's feedback is provided back to the sender; the process is albeit cyclic (Bowman & Branchaw, 2008). One has to understand that communication plays a significant role in organizational decision making. Apart from passing information, it is also a way to collect feedback from relevant stakeholders. The information collected is incorporated into decision making.
Following the due process of communication ensures effectiveness in the passing of information. Communication has an alignment with the organization's strategic goals; hence, it is a vital function of management. Without effectiveness in business communication, the organization has lost the first step in its attempt to achieve its strategic vision and mission (Bowman & Branchaw, 2008). According to Volk and Zerfass (2018), the strategic role of communication assists in internal and external business processes. It helps in keeping all players in line with the aims and goals of the firm.
The following is a discussion of the steps involved in a communication process.
The Steps/Stages of the Communication Process
There are seven steps of the communication process as follows; the sender, official message, encoding, message transmission, decoding and understanding, receiver and reception, response, and feedback (Kalpana, 2020). Whether communication is formal or informal, communication happens in the steps listed above. Each of the steps is important in the processes as hereby explained;
The sender – this is the person with the original message, and where the message originates. Communication starts with the sender, who must generate the message correctly. If the sender makes an error in the message, the same gets transmitted to the receiver, and the intended information does not come across successfully (Planer & Godfrey-Smith, 2020).
Official message – this is the exact information that needs to be passed across. For instance, it could be a teacher with information about what children should report to their parents on arrival at home.
Encoding – Message processing should happen in a way and form that it is understandable. For instance, it could be done in spoken words, written form, or even in video format (Shuo & Jia-Ming, 2013). For example, a manager can write an official memo using words and print them for posting. The way a message is presented makes a case for how the recipient understands it.
Message transmission – at this stage, the sender must select the best channel or medium through to send the message. For instance, the sender could opt to use a text message, the mail service, or even a message broadcast on the mainstream media (Bhamare, 2016). For example, if the president sends a message to the nation, he may opt to use the mainstream media in a live broadcast as the channel of communication.
Decoding and understanding – when the message passes through the medium of choice, the receiver has to understand the message in their way. Sometimes the receiver may understand the information in the right way; other times, the message may be misunderstood (Shuo & Jia-Ming, 2013). The receiver's understanding is fundamental in the next phase of the process.
Receiver and reception – at this stage, the receiver has the information, understands it, and makes sense of the information. If the message is well understood, the receiver acts up-on it as may be required (Planer & Godfrey-Smith, 2020). The manager could have requested for a particular document via email, and the receiver may now send the document to the manager.
Response and feedback – responding to the message could be done for specific reasons. It could be done to acknowledge reception; it could be to seek clarity or to respond to a query raised in the original message (Saedon et al., 2012). Feedback ensures completion of the process and an assurance that the message was delivered as intended.
NB: Noise- This is one part of the communication process that is not a proper step, but a crucial part of the process. Noise is any hindrance that occurs in the process and can happen at any point in the process. When it occurs, it reduces the accuracy of the communication process (Kalpana, 2020).
The communication process is dynamic, with some things like communication channel depending on various reasons. The encoding method of a message also changes from one party to another. Depending on the relationship between the sender and receiver, encoding choice is made. For instance, a message from the CEO to a subordinate may not be encoded the same way as one from a teacher to a learner. Therefore, the relationship between the parties in the message plays an important role (Falkheimer, 2014).
Application in Organization
At the shipping agency, communication is fundamental, and the communication process plays a vital role. Everyone is obliged to be aware of the communication process at the firm and utilize it successfully. The agency involves so many different levels of communication, both internally and externally. If there is a breakdown in any of them, the functioning of the business is affected. External communication involves liaison with clients and suppliers, whereas internal communication is among employees, and from management to the subordinates. All the communication must go full cycle of the communication process to ensure that all processes are in order. For instance, it could be communication between the business and a client.
The agency starts by making contact with the client. The message is about cargo that is about to be shipped to a certain destination. The sender is the agency; the official message is about the cargo and its destination. Encoding of the message is in the form of a textual message sent via email to the client. On that account, encoding could be in words and pictures of the cargo, and the transmission occurs electronically. The client receives the message and decodes it to understand its meaning. If everything is in order, the client provides feedback affirming that the cargo can be shipped to the indicated destination. Is something is missing from the client’s transaction, he or she may ask for clarification. By this stage, the communication process has undergone the full cycle.
There are so many levels of communication in the agency. However, they all have to resort to the communication process in its fullness. The internal procedures of communication are usually handled by email. However, the loading bay has installed a communication gadget to ensure that any urgent orders can be communicated with ease. Communication is so essential that there is a high-level manager hired to handle the business's communications with significant partners and clients and ensure no mistakes occur along the way. In line with Abdullah (2011) views, every training session at the firm insists on efficiency in communication; and especially in the encoding of the message. The communications manager always advises members to take the perspective of the receiver when encoding formulating any message.
The importance of communication in an organization cannot be overemphasized. Firms that have established effective communication mechanisms have been quite successful. Without a doubt, a breakdown in communication is a catalyst to so many unaccomplished plans in any firm. It should be part of any organization's induction plan to train new employees about all the business communication channels and how always to ensure a complete cycle of the communication process. Organizational management must keep an eye on the process, such that if there is any point in the process causing breakdown, it gets corrected within a reasonable time. Errors in the process of communication must be taken as intolerable mistakes. They happen from time to time, but they have to be corrected in good time to ensure effectiveness.
Abdullah, Z. (2011). Strategic Leadership in Corporate Communication: The Importance of Executive Coaching. SSRN Electronic Journal. https://doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1869439
Alvesson, M. (2013). Communication, power, and organization (Vol. 72). Walter de Gruyter.
Bhamare, P. (2016). Message Communication A New Approach. International Journal Of Engineering And Computer Science. https://doi.org/10.18535/ijecs/v5i2.13
Bowman, J., & Branchaw, B. (2008). Business Communication: Its Process and Product. Journal Of Business Communication, 24(1), 23-25. https://doi.org/10.1177/00219436870240105
Falkheimer, J. (2014). The power of strategic communication in organizational development. International Journal of Qcuality and Service Sciences. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/224887189_The_role_of_feedback_in_improving_the_effectiveness_of_workplace_based_assessments_A_systematic_review
Kalpana, R. (2020). Elements and Importance of Communication Process | Business Management. Essays, Research Papers, and Articles on Business Management. Retrieved 8 June 2020, from https://www.businessmanagementideas.com/communication/elements-and-importance-of-communication-process-business-management/2354.
Planer, R., & Godfrey-Smith, P. (2020). Communication and representation understood as sender-receiver coordination. Mind & Language. https://doi.org/10.1111/mila.12293
Saedon, H., Salleh, S., Balakrishnan, A., Imray, C. H., & Saedon, M. (2012). The role of feedback in improving the effectiveness of workplace-based assessments: a systematic review. BMC Medical Education, 12(1), 25. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/224887189_The_role_of_feedback_in_improving_the_effectiveness_of_workplace_based_assessments_A_systematic_review
Shuo, T. & Jia-Ming, L. (2013). Effects of message encoding and decoding on synchronized chaotic optical communications. IEEE Journal of Quantum Electronics, 39(11), 1468-1474. https://doi.org/10.1109/jqe.2003.818278
Volk, S. C., & Zerfass, A. (2018). Alignment: Explicating a key concept in strategic communication. International Journal of Strategic Communication, 12(4), 433-451. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/241730557_Defining_Strategic_Communication
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