BBA Business Communication Study Material Dimensions of Communication

BBA Business Communication Study Material Dimensions of Communication: BBA Business Communication Notes Study Material in English Language PDF Download.

BBA Business Communication Study Material Dimensions of Communication : Page 1

BBA Business Communication Study Material Dimensions of Communication : Page 1

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BBA Business Communication Study Material Dimensions of Communication
BBA Business Communication Study Material Dimensions of Communication

After Studying This Chapter You Are Able understand: Introduction, Downward Communication, Upward Communication, Horizontal or Communication, Diagonal or Crosswise Communication.

DIMENSIONS OF COMMUNICATION

BBA

bUSINESS COMMUNICATION
STUDY MATERIAL

KEY POINTS


DIMENSIONS OF COMMUNICATION
  1. An organization has many levels of hierarchy.
  2. Communication is a multi – directional activity.
  3. The Directions or dimensions of communication are – downward, upward, horizontal or lateral, and diagonal or crosswise.
  4. All these directions or dimensions have their own uses and problems.
  5. The ombudsperson has come to occupy an important place in the context of modern business communication.

BBA

BUSINESS COMMUNICATION
STUDY MATERIAL

INTRODUCTION


DIMENSIONS OF COMMUNICATION

In the previous chapter the importance of communication has been highlighted. As a corollary to the same line of thinking it can be very well realized that communication is multidimensional or multi-directional. There are various directions in which it flows. In order to have an idea of how it works in a typical organization it is worthwhile having a look at its levels of operation. It usually takes the form of a pyramid like the one shown here in a large manufacturing and marketing organization

This is a large organization, having eight layers. There may be more layers/levels/tiers or less, all of them being bound or held together by communication. The arrow-lines in the pyramid show the following directions of communication:

  1. Downward
  2. Upward
  3. Horizontal or Lateral
  4. Diagonal or Crosswise

BBA

BUSINESS COMMUNICATION
STUDY MATERIAL

DOWNWARD COMMUNICATION


DIMENSIONS OF COMMUNICATION

Any organization has an inbuilt hierarchical system, and in that, in that in the first instance, communication invariably flows downwards. That is why traditionally downward communication was highlighted and emphasized. It originated in the assumption that the people operating at higher levels have the authority to communicate to the people at the lower levels. Hence this kind of communication exists especially in organizations with an authoritarian atmosphere. Whether one like this kind of atmosphere or not, if would be difficult to conceive of any organization without downward communication. A sample representation of downward communication can be stated as follows:

BBA

BUSINESS COMMUNICATION
STUDY MATERIAL

Problems of downward communication

While issuing instructions or sending letters, every CEO or General Manager assumes that what he intends to communicate invariably reaches the persons it is intended for and understood. But unfortunately it is not always so. Information is quite often lost or distorted in the course of its journey down the chain of command. In fact, many directives or instructions are not understood or even read. It is, therefore, to be always kept in mind that mere issuance of policies and procedures does not ensure communication. That is why, a feedback system becomes essential. For any communicative purpose to be served, it is essential to find out whether the receiver of the message or information has understood it, or perceived it, in the same way as intended by the sender.

Another problem that very often comes up is that the downward flow of information through different levels of the organization is time-consuming. The more the levels, the more the chances of delay or dilution of information. The delay may sometimes be so frustrating that some top managers make it a point sends the information or message or instruction directly to the person or group concerned.

Moreover, downward communication is likely to be filtered, modified or distorted at any or each level as managers decide what should be passed down to their employees. The accuracy of the information is quite likely to be limited by status and power differences between manager and employee, and lack of trust.

Sometimes managers withhold information in order to keep the employees dependent on them. The net result is that, in the absence of complete information, employees may feel confused, uniformed, or powerless and might fail to carry out their tasks properly. It may lead to unnecessary conflict and spoil the employer –employee, supervisor-subordinate relations.

BBA

BUSINESS COMMUNICATION
STUDY MATERIAL

UPWARD COMMUNICATION


DIMENSIONS OF COMMUNICATION

The main function of upward communication is to supply information to the upper levels about what is happening at the lower levels. It is just the reverse of the previous dimension. It travels from the people at the bottom and reaches the upper levels of the organizations structure. Unfortunately, there is very little appreciation of this form of communication as it does not fit into the traditional concepts of organization behaviour according to which the right to communicate was supposed to have been vested in the higher ups only. Upward communication is essentially participative in nature and can flourish only in democratic organizational environment. And only in such an environment it can satisfy the need of the upper levels of management to know specifically about production performance, marketing information, financial data, what lower level employees are thinking and feeling about the whole or part of the business.

In the words of Koontz, “Typical means for upward communication-besides the chain of command-are suggestion systems, appeal and grivance  procedure, complaint systems, counseling sessions, joint setting of objectives, the grapevine, group meetings, the practice of open-door policy, morale questionnaires, exit interviews and ombudsperson”.

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