In simple terms communication can be defined as the transmission, receipt and the processing of information. This data consists of anything that has meaning or can evoke a response. It involves the transference of data or information from one entity or group to another. This information can range from anything trivia to the most complex forms of communication. Since the information takes a variety of forms including words, symbols, numbers, an individual concept, or a group of ideas combined, the recipient must be able to interpret or comprehend the meaning of the transmission.
On Monday’s post, we identified two levels of communication that exist in a business arena: (a) interpersonal communication – communication that takes place between individuals or from one individual to a small set of people; and (b) communication systems that provide methods and technologies to transmit data throughout the organization. In his book Management Communication, Donald Baack (2012) reveals that communication systems within an organization also include both intra (within) and inter (between) group dynamics as well as the most complex methods of moving information throughout the company (Baack, 2012). For example, interpersonal communication can occur between a supervisor and an employee; from employee to employee; or between a supervisor to a team of staff members. Communication systems, on the other hand, can occur between members of a team or group; between two or more groups; from management channels; as well from informal channels which include the gossip and rumor mills.
In the meantime, in today’s business arena, the use of modern technology has had both a positive and negative impact on organizational communication. In the e-book, Breaching Communication Barriers (2013), my research revealed that the positive aspect of communicating in the modern world is that there are many avenues available to us for sending messages due to advancements in technology. In today’s global marketplace, we can now transmit messages instantly, via email, voicemail, telephone, face-to-face, video mail, voice texting, via Skype technology, and text messaging. In the meantime, the negative impact these technological advances in communication have had is that individuals now rely heavily on the use of technology for communication which refrains them from engaging in real-time conversations. This component can distort transmission. Without the ability to engage in nonverbal cues like eye contact, body language, and facial expressions, messages transmitted more often than not are received distorted and lead to misunderstandings, bad feelings, and tend to create more conflicts where none existed. In other words as the means of transmitting messages continues to evolve, we must take more care to ensure messages are received as they were intended to be delivered, because without the use of nonverbal cues to provide critical information, messages can be interpreted incorrectly resulting in chaotic outcomes.
That’s it for today. We will continue this discussion on Friday’s post! Until then … stay organized!
Whatever words we utter should be chosen with care for people will hear them and be influenced by them for good or ill. – Buddha
For more information on Media Magic, our digital publications, or to purchase any of our accelerated learning Business Life titles, please visit:
Baack, D. (2012). Management Communication. San Diego, CA, USA: Bridgepoint Education.
Berry, M. A. (2013). Breaching Communication Barriers (Vol. 2). (C. Angela, Ed.) USA: Kindle Direct Publishing.