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Q1. sent



situation signals.

that Which


experienced of


communication went wrong because the non-verbal behaviour conflicting aspect non-verbal communication was responsible for the communication failure? How would you rectify this?
Answer: When I was working in my previous company (almost a year back), team of our offshore resources in India visited the client’s office in Netherlands. The client was explaining his processes and technical difficulties and was seeking for a solution. There were several members from the client side who are Dutch attending this with our team. After the briefing the client asked if they have understood the issue and are we able to provide a solution. The answer from our three-member team was nodding their head side ways! The person who took the meeting minutes recorded this non-verbl communication interpreted as they did not understand the issue and cannot provide a solution! The failure to understand Non-verbal Communication Varies Across Cultures is responsible for the communications failure. This can be rectified by the following ways. 1. The first step is to educate one with Non-verbal communication, its impact in business etc. Non-Verbal communication is defined as communication without words. It refers to any way of conveying meanings without the use of verbal language.

2. The next step is to understand the following aspects a. Non-verbal Communication Cannot Be Avoided b. Non-verbal Communication is Powerful c. Non-verbal Communication is Ambiguous d. Non-verbal Communication Cannot Express All Messages e. Non-verbal Communication Varies Across Cultures 3. The last step is to learn to express verbally and avoiding

Miscommunication by following a few simple guidelines like
a. Avoid Words with Multiple Meanings b. Ensure Clarity through Highly Specific Statements

c. Avoid overuse of Jargon: Jargon refers to technical terms or
specialized vocabulary. d. Avoid Biased Language and Offensive Words

Q2. Explain why Public Relations is an important part of external business communication.
Answer: Public relations (PR) is the practice of managing the flow of information between an individual or an organization and the public. Public relations provides an organization or individual exposure to their audiences using topics of public interest and news items that do not require direct payment. The aim of public relations by a company often is to persuade the public, investors, partners, employees, and other stakeholders to maintain a certain point of view about it, its leadership, products, or of political decisions. Common activities include speaking at conferences, winning industry awards, working with the press, and employee communication. External business communication can be easily pointed out from the above activities which includes - speaking at conferences, winning industry awards, working with the press. This means that Public Relations is directing External Business

Communication. Following are some of the reasons why Public Relations is an important part of external business communication. For Successful Marketing – Organizations need to inform and create awareness among consumers about their existing and new products. This is largely done through advertising, which is a form of mass communication. This is very much a part of external business communication. To build a Favorable Corporate Image – Today, organizations need to focus on projecting themselves as responsible corporate and social citizens. This is known as corporate social responsibility. For example, they need to communicate the fact that they are involved in social development or in environmental protection.

This involves being in touch with various external stakeholders, especially consumers, media and the society at large. To Increase Shareholder Value – If customers have a positive image of the company, the company’s share price will go up and shareholders’ wealth increases, thereby enhancing shareholder value. Shareholder confidence in the company also drives shareholder value. When shareholder value increases, they will participate in the company’s expansion and growth. To Overcome a Crisis – Sometimes when a company is facing a crisis, a public relations campaign may be needed to manage the situation, put things in a proper perspective and restore the image of the company in the eyes of consumers, the media and society at large. Public relations require effective communication with various external stakeholders. Examples – A few years ago, Reliance was prosecuted by the government for irregularities in the stock market. Shareholders lost confidence in the company. Reliance then mounted a counter campaign against the government, where they told the truth, gave the facts and figures and denied the allegations made against them. This helped them to regain lost confidence and salvage their image. Similarly, when Coke and Pepsi were accused of pesticides in their soft drinks, they had to undertake a massive public relations exercise to set right their image in the eyes of the public. To Enhance Credit Rating – An organization’s credit rating will also go up if it maintains good external communication. This way its borrowing ability will increase and more money can be raised for expansion and growth. Having emphasized the importance of external business communication, let us now go into the reasons for communicating with external stakeholders and the channels used to communicate with them, just as we did with internal communication. The wheel of business communication illustrates that external business communication involves interaction with the following stakeholders –

Consumers – Organizations need to communicate with consumers to provide information about their products and services, special promotional offers and new product developments. They also need to redress consumer complaints, so as to maintain consumer preference and confidence in their brands. The written channel is the most appropriate medium for communicating with consumers. This could take the form of letters, or mass media advertising. Intermediaries – This refers to the trade – distributors, wholesalers, retailers, franchisees, etc. It is necessary to communicate with them to provide information about product availability, special offers, incentives and allowances, contractual aspects, order processing, delivery aspects and merchandising, or the visual display of products. Keeping intermediaries aware and informed and motivating them to meet targets through competitions, prizes and incentives is extremely important for the success of any product. The appropriate channels of communication with intermediaries could be both oral and written channels. Written contracts, advertisements announcing special offers and incentives and dealer newsletters inviting dealers to share their experiences, are examples of written channels. Periodic review meetings and continuous communication through sales staff are examples of oral channels. Suppliers – These are suppliers of raw material, components, power, water or other utilities. Communication with suppliers is essential to give technical specifications, ensure quality and timely delivery. Today, due to “outsourcing” or relying on outside sources for raw materials and components, there is need for more sophisticated and direct communication and a more continuous, on-going relationship with suppliers. The internet now plays an important role in communication communication. Many organizations today enter into a partnership with their suppliers, whereby there is total involvement on both sides. For example, a company engineer might train the shop floor technical staff of a supplier of automotive components, in order to improve the quality of the components. The supplier on his side, may suggest a change in the company’s specification process. with suppliers, through “Business to Business” (B2B)

Direct, one-to-one communication is required with suppliers to ensure transparency and clarity, with respect to specifications. The oral face-to-face channel is most appropriate, although the online channel is being increasingly used in supplier communication. Government – Communicating with the government is particularly important in the Indian context and is a part of public relations. Many Indian companies even appoint a PR officer for maintaining good relations with the government. The reasons for communicating with the government include compliance with tax matters and legal aspects, seeking clearances for new activities such as joint ventures, borrowing from overseas banks, foreign exchange requirements and so on. Communication with the government could take place through both oral and written channels. Periodic meetings may be held with regard to statutory compliances such as licensing. However, most of the time, written communication through formal letters is more appropriate. This is because clearances for various activities have to be sought in writing. Society – As pointed out earlier, organizations need to communicate with the community at large to project themselves as responsible corporate citizens. “Corporate social responsibility” as it is called, is top priority with many organizations today. Supporting women’s education, building hospitals for the disabled, schools for children, family planning and non-pollution of the environment are some of the ways in which companies are participating in social development and then communicating this to society. The channels of communication with society could be oral and direct – for example, talking to elders in a village or locality, about family planning or schools for children. Mass media advertising in the form of “public service advertising” could also be used to spread these social service messages Example – United Breweries ran a public service campaign with the caption “Drinking and driving don’t mix”, to spread the message of avoiding drunken driving.

There is a large element of public relations in communication with society. Bankers – Like shareholders, organizations need to communicate with bankers both in good times and bad times. The reasons for communicating with bankers are the same as those for shareholders. In addition, advance notice needs to be given to bankers regarding any dislocation in repayment schedules and justification has to be provided for any additional fund needs. The overall purpose is to build rapport with the bank, so as to increase borrowing ability. Communication with bankers could take place through oral channels – for example, periodic meetings with the Finance Manager of the company to keep them informed of stock build up trends, or future trends that could affect working capital needs. Special meetings may also be held to keep them posted about expansion, contraction and diversification plans, lockouts, strikes and anything else that may affect cash flow. In addition to oral channels, periodic written reports need to be submitted to the bank on overall business conditions. Transparency is needed in dealings with the bank and failure to keep them informed could lead to the company’s collapse. Example – The Enron Company did not communicate with their shareholders and bankers about the difficult times that they were going through. This ultimately led to the company’s ruin. Media – Today, the media are becoming more powerful and investigative and are intruding into people’s personal lives. If wrongly informed, the media can destroy an institution. Therefore, the primary reason for an organization to communicate with the media is to maintain good relations. If the company projects a favorable image to the media, the media in turn will carry a positive story about the company for free. This is known as “publicity” and is part of public relations. For example, a press release in a newspaper may highlight some of the achievements or awards won by the company. This type of publicity is highly credible and can have a powerful influence on public opinion.

Communication with the media takes place through both oral channels such as press conferences, as well as written channels such as letters and news releases. External business communication in the form of the matrix is given belowStakeholder Consumers Intermediaries Channel Advertisements Letters Written Contracts Newsletters Advertisements Review Meetings Direct Oral Communication Online Communication Periodic Meetings Formal Letters Direct Oral Communication Advertisements Periodic & Special Meetings Written Reports News conferences News Releases Overall Objective Awareness Information Persuasion Awareness Information Motivation On-going Relationship Partnership Government Cooperation Corporate Social Responsibility Good Rapport More borrowing ability Good Relations

Suppliers Government Society Bankers Media

Q3. Select a company of your choice in a sector that you would like to work in. Imagine that you have to make a brief presentation on this company to business school students. Develop – a) A general and specific statement of purpose b) The key idea c) Your style of delivery.
Answer: The company I have selected is Verizon Business, and the sector is Technology Consulting. a) A general and specific statement of purpose Before preparing for the presentation, it is important to be clear on the goal of the presentation. A “statement of purpose”, expressing what I want to achieve through the presentation should be framed, so that it becomes easy to measure whether the goal has been accomplished or not. The purpose of the presentation may be stated in broad or general terms, or in more specific terms. A general statement of purpose could be expressed in terms of one of the following – To Inform or To Persuade or To Entertain As this is specifically for the Business School Students I will the first one – To Inform them about the benefits of joining my company. Although it is useful to define the general purpose of a presentation, it is more important to frame a specific statement of purpose, which clearly spells out the answers to the following questions – 1. Whom do I want to influence?

2. What do I want them to do at the end of the presentation? 3. How do I want them to do it? 4. When? 5. Where? Example – “I want 37% of my audience to be convinced enough to apply for new openings, within the next one week.” The above statement of purpose describes the reaction that you are seeking from my audience and also describes the goal in measurable terms. The number of applications form school during the one week period would indicate whether the goal has been achieved or not. As far as possible, the goal should be quantified, so that it is measurable. b) The Key Idea The key idea of a presentation is a statement that expresses the main message to be conveyed to the audience. It is different from a statement of purpose, in that the purpose is generally meant for myself as the presenter, while the key idea is mentioned to the audience at the beginning of the presentation. Example – As purpose is to inform school students about my company’s brand of vacuum cleaner, the key idea or message may be to explain how my company is superior to other companies, benefits, career paths etc. Once the key idea is clearly stated, it becomes easy to develop the rest of the presentation. c) Style of delivery There are five different delivery styles available– The one I will select form the below will be Speaking from Notes as this is the most successful one.

Speaking Impromptu – In this case, the speaker is called upon to say a few words without any warning or advance notice. Since there is little or no time given for preparation, it is suited for only expert speakers. Impromptu speeches should be brief, simple and direct, compared to prepared speeches. Speaking Extemporaneously – This is different from speaking impromptu. While impromptu speeches are delivered on the spot and not rehearsed, an extemporaneous speech is prepared and rehearsed in advance, but delivered naturally, without the support of notes or other aids. This is the delivery style used by experienced professionals, who have sufficient knowledge of the subject to be able to speak without relying on notes. Memorizing the Presentation – This is the least appealing style of delivery, since it comes across as unnatural and monotonous to the audience. A speaker who memorizes and delivers a presentation word for word will also be at a disadvantage if he forgets a part of the speech, since he or she will be unable to speak naturally. Reading from Written Notes – This consists in reading the entire presentation from notes. It is a method used by government or business officials and may be appropriate when the material to be presented is highly technical or complex. However, it has some limitations. First, it gives the impression that the speech is very long and heavy. Secondly, it prevents the presenter from making eye contact with the audience. Speaking from Notes – This is generally the most effective style of delivery. It consists in jotting down the main ideas in point form on index cards and then referring to these cards merely as a trigger while speaking. If the main ideas are put down briefly on the cards, the speaker can elaborate on these ideas in his own words and speak for any length of time. The presentation is likely to be more effective, since it comes across as natural and permits eye contact with the audience.

Q4. Discuss the principles of business writing
Answer: Written messages must be made as readable as possible, by making them uncomplicated and easy for even the average person to understand. Readability in turn is largely determined by the length of words, sentences and paragraphs. A common mistake made by writers, especially Indian writers, is to try and impress the reader by using flowery language and an oratory style of writing. Two broad principles of writing are ‘Write to express, not to impress” and “Keep it short and sweet.” A good writer is one who follows these principles and asks himself/herself even before framing a sentence “What am I trying to say? What words will express it?” Below are some tips on writing style, followed by some specific rules regarding English language usage, spelling and punctuation. Tips on Writing Style Writing style can be vastly improved through the choice of words. Some of the common problems of word choice include use of complicated words, use of jargon, slang and colorful language and mistakes in various part-of-speech categories. 1. Simple vs. Complex Words As far as possible, the sender should select words that are within the receiver’s vocabulary. If the words used are outside the vocabulary of the receiver, the latter may either not get the message at all, get the wrong message by guessing the meaning incorrectly, or wonder whether the sender intentionally selected a complicated word for making an impression. Therefore, it is better to rely on plain, simple words, such as the ones shown in the left column, rather than in the right column below, even though they mean the same thing – About = Approximately

Do = Accomplish Improve = Ameliorate Show = Demonstrate Change = Modify Ask = Interrogate This is because short, simple words convey ideas more effectively and require less time and space. They also invite the sender to concentrate on ideas, rather than calling attention to the words themselves. 2. Jargon, Slang and Metaphors Jargon refers to technical terms that belong to a particular subject area or discipline. For example, medical jargon would include terms that only medical practitioners and not the lay person might understand. Such terms are to be avoided in general writing, since they would be out of context. The only instance where jargon can be used and might be essential, is in reports of a highly technical nature, where the reader is in a position to understand these terms. Slang refers to casual words that are not accepted and recognized in a Standard English dictionary. While they could be used in a limited way in general or informal writing, they are to be avoided in business writing, which needs to be formal in nature. A metaphor is a figure of speech and refers to colorful comparisons which evoke visual images. Examples – 1. He is rock solid in his support. 2. We provide an umbrella of insurance products for your security. While such comparisons may be used in informal writing or in the language of advertising, they are to be avoided in business communication which has to be objective and formal. 3. Parts of Speech

In the same way that use of big, complicated words may result in receipt of the wrong message, use of small words in the wrong way grammatically could have the same result. Such problems exist in all part-of-speech categoriesNouns Just as the main actor in a film is the most important character, the subject in a sentence is the most important noun. There are two categories of nouns – “abstract nouns” or nouns that cannot be visualized and “concrete nouns” or nouns that can be visualized. A message will be understood more clearly if concrete nouns are used as subjects in a sentence, rather than abstract nouns. Example Cancellation of the contract will be done in March. (use of abstract noun as subject) The contract will be cancelled in March. (use of concrete noun as subject) In the above example, the second sentence, using “contract” as the subject, is likely to be understood more clearly by the receiver. Not only is “contract” something which can be visualized, it also emphasizes the main idea in the sentence. Consider another example – That decision can be made only by the supervisor. (abstract noun as subject) Only the supervisor can make that decision. (Concrete noun as subject) Pronouns Sometimes, using the masculine form of a pronoun might be taken in an offensive way by the receiver, especially if the receiver happens to be a woman. Even if the receiver is not a woman, the use of a masculine pronoun may convey the impression of being sexist. Consider the following example – You need to consult your professor on that subject, but he has to be a specialist in the area of Finance. In the above sentence, the use of the masculine pronoun “he” conveys the unintentional message that professors can only be men and not women, which could be taken as an offense. Such offensive pronouns can be avoided in the following ways-

1. Avoid use of the pronoun completely Example – You need to consult your professor on that subject, but a specialist in the area of Finance is required. 2. Repeat the noun Example – You need to consult your professor on that subject, but the professor has to be a specialist in the area of Finance. Use a plural noun Example – You need to consult some of your professors on that subject, but they have to be specialists in the area of Finance. (The use of “they” avoids implying that professors can be only men). 4. Use pronouns from both genders Example – You need to consult your professor on that subject, but he or she has to be a specialist in the area of Finance. Another principle regarding use of pronouns is to avoid excessive use of the first person pronoun “I”, since this gives the impression that one is always talking about oneself. Never sound too pleased with yourself or boast of your own achievements. This is especially true of business writing, where it is important to be objective, rather than subjective. The second person pronoun “you” also needs to be used with care. A rule of thumb is to use the second person pronoun when emphasizing a positive idea or message and to avoid the second person when presenting a negative idea. The following example illustrates this – You made a good presentation. You made a number of mistakes in the report. The first sentence contains a positive idea. Therefore, the second person pronoun should be used, since it gives credit to the person who made the presentation. On the other hand, the second sentence contains a negative idea and emphasizes that “you” are responsible. This should be avoided by framing the sentence differently, such as “The report contained a number of mistakes.” Verbs

Since verbs are action words and action is an essential part of a sentence, correct use of verbs is important. Senders of messages must use verbs that agree in number with the subjects of the sentence. The following examples illustrate the misuse of verbs in sentences – 1. Only one of the students are present. (Wrong usage) Only one of the students is present (right usage) 2. Each of the following reports have been modified. (Wrong usage) Each of the following reports has been modified. (Right usage) Note that the singular form of the verb and not the plural should be used in both the above sentences, to agree with the subject which is in singular form (“Only one” and “Each”). Verbs must also agree in person. The most common errors are made in agreement with the third person and the second person – 1. He don’t like to work late (wrong) He doesn’t like to work late.(correct) 2. You was informed that the exams begin next week (wrong) You were informed that the exams begin next week. (Correct) Thirdly, since verbs indicate the time of action – past, present or future, they should be used in the correct tenses. The tenses should also be used consistently. Consider the following examples – 1. He listens to the presentation and gave his feedback. 2. The manager spoke to the customer, but does not respond to his complaint. In both the above sentences, it is not clear whether the event is past or present, since the tenses are not used uniformly. It is better to use two present tense verbs or two past tense verbs, but not one of each in the same sentence – 1. He listens to the presentation and gives his feedback. 2. The manager spoke to the customer but did not respond to his complaint. Adjectives Adjectives give information about or describe nouns. Although they play a less important role in a sentence compared to verbs and nouns, they must be used with care. A common tendency is to use very strong adjectives, too many adjectives, or superlatives. Examples

1. Sales this year have been absolutely incredible. 2. That is the most wonderful, powerful and moving speech that I have heard in a long time. 3. Ours is the best product in the market today. In the first sentence, if a sales report is being written or presented, it would be better to give details about sales figures, rather than describe sales as “incredible”. In the second sentence, a single adjective could have been used in place of three adjectives, which are too many. The third example is a claim that needs to be defined ( i.e., best in what way?), or supported with adequate proof. Adverbs In the same way that adjectives describe nouns, adverbs describe or modify verbs, adjectives or other adverbs. Therefore, the same principles apply when using adverbs – i.e., avoid use of adverbs that are too strong, or are superlatives – Examples – 1. Sales have been fantastically high this year. The adverb “fantastically” describes the adjective “high” and is too strong to be credible. 2. This secretary types the fastest. Here, the adverb “fastest” describes the verb “types” and is a superlative, which is to be avoided, unless it can be defined or supported with proof.

Q5. Write a short note on the SQ3R technique of reading.
Answer: SQ3R technique of reading was developed by Robinson in his book "Effective Study" (1970). SQ3R stands for the initial letters of the five steps in studying a textSurvey Question Read Recall Review S Q R R R

Let us briefly go through these steps in the given order. 1. Survey: Survey refers to a quick glance through the title page, preface and chapter headings of a text. By surveying, you will be able to gauge the main ideas of the text. Besides, the author’s name, date, place of publication and title page can give you an idea of the general subject area. The table of contents, preface or foreword in a book would give you an idea of the themes and how they are organized. A survey of the index or bibliography tells you immediately whether the book contains what you need. Let us take an example. Choose the appropriate reference by a quick survey: Here is a bibliography (list of books) on POLIMERIZATION. Decide which of the publications in the list are likely to give you: (encircle the appropriate letter) A brief introduction to the subject: a b c d e f Current developments in the field a b c d e f Historical study of the subject a b c d e f Various opinions by experts on the subject a b c d e f Bibliography (a) Billmeyer, F.W. 1962. A Text Book of Polymer Science

New York: John Wiley and Sons (b) A condensed Chemical Dictionary (c) International Encyclopaedia of Sciences (d) Encyclopaedia Britannica (e) Stille, J. K. 1962. Introduction to Polymer Chemistry: New York: John Wiley and Sons. Wassermann, Leonard G., 1974 (f) Chemistry: Basic Concepts and Contemporary Applications California: Wadsworth Publ Co. Inc. (Adapted from ELT Documents, 1980) 2. Question: The second step in the SQ3R technique of reading is “question.” A survey of the text will surely raise a few questions in your mind regarding the text. Some of the questions could be Is the book useful or relevant to my study ?  Does it provide some guidelines/information on the subject at hand ? However, as you go through the individual chapters, you might have specific questions regarding the topic. This will surely lead to gaining some insights into the text, topic and the author's comments. You will be surprised to see how your questions are answered in the process of reading and understanding the text. Therefore, don't treat reading as an automatic process. It has to be conscious and deliberate,.with a definite purpose, where you interact with the topic and the author. 3. Reading: After surveying and questioning, you begin the actual reading. You need to develop a critical approach to reading anything for that matter. Read the text over and over again, each time with a different question and a different purpose in mind. "I read it once and understand everything" kind of attitude is nothing but a myth. Hence, while reading for the first time, you should just focus on the main points/ideas and supporting details. 4. Recall: The fourth stage in reading comprehension is recalling. Reading is not an isolated activity. Every reading exercise increases your background

knowledge. You should be able to connect the information gained with the already existing background knowledge. Recalling whatever you have read will enable you to connect and relate the content with the previous and future learning of the subject. This leads us to the next stage in reading i.e., review. 5. Review: Reviewing is nothing but checking whether we have followed the earlier stages promptly and efficiently. Have we surveyed the book, article, or magazine properly? Have we asked the appropriate questions relating to the content, have we read it critically and have we recalled the most significant details or information required for our study? These are questions that should be asked in the final stage of reading. Review will sharpen your critical ability, enable you to form your own opinions on the topic and express them to others. Try to practice these stages consciously in your reading and research and you will find this to be a highly rewarding experience.

Q6. (a) List the importance of effective communication in the workplace (b) Explain the advantages of oral communication with the help of suitable example. Answer: a) List the importance of effective communication in the workplace Communication in simple terms is a transfer of information between people, resulting in common understanding between them. Communication has been defined differently by different writers and behavioral theorists. According to Newman and summer, “Communication is an exchange of facts, ideas, opinions or emotions by two or more persons.” Communication is the nerve center of business today. As you go up the corporate ladder, you will find that communication skills are required, more than technical skills. Communication research has revealed that among the factors most important for managerial success, communication skills rank above technical skills. Several surveys conducted among people who have been successful in their professions have indicated that communication skills are more vital to job success than subjects taken in college. Communication has assumed even greater importance today, since the new model of business is based on teamwork, rather than on individual action. Teamwork requires greater coordination and communication. Communication is also required all the more in this age of information and technology. Without communication and human skills, technology will overwhelm an organization. Communication helps to make sense of technology and to manage all this information. For example, communication is required to explain a new computer program or software. While computers can perform routine tasks, jobs like responding to customers’ needs require a

high degree of communication skills. Effective communication serves the following specific purposes in an organization – Greater Awareness of Organizational Goals and Teamwork – When there is open communication between superiors, co-workers and subordinates, there is smooth flow of information regarding the goals of the organization. Coordination between the different departments in particular, leads to greater motivation to work together towards achieving a common organizational goal, rather than working in isolation. Better Employer-employee Relationships – By listening to employees, showing empathy and giving them the freedom to express their opinions without fear of being repressed, a manager can create a climate of openness that leads to better work relationships. Employees will then feel more comfortable in approaching their superiors and discussing any matter with them. Problem-solving – Effective communication can help resolve conflicts between co-workers, work related and performance related problems. Face–to-face communication is especially suited for achieving this task, since it is one to one and highly personalized in nature. Improved Performance – Effective communication by managers at the time of appraising the performance of their employees can point out areas for improvement. A constructive review of performance, through which a manager gives positive feedback and counsels the employee, instead of criticizing him for poor performance, can motivate the employee to perform better. Stronger Link between Managers and the External Environment – Apart from internal communication within the organization, effective communication by managers with external audiences such as customers, government, bankers, media and suppliers leads to a better rapport with them. A manager will be able

to understand the needs of his customers, be aware of the presence of quality suppliers of material, of government regulations and of the expectations of the community at large, only through proper communication. (b) Explain the advantages of oral communication with the help of suitable example. Irrespective of your field or the type of job that you choose to take up, developing good oral communication skills is a must. Oral skills are needed for making effective presentations, participating in and conducting meetings, dealing with customers and interacting on a day-to-day basis with your superiors, peers and subordinates within the organization. Your oral communication skills often reveal your personality. Speaking effectively also gives you great visibility and confidence and can contribute to your career success. As you go up the corporate ladder, presentation speaking skills become more important than technical skills. Your ability to organize your ideas, present them and sell them to others is what determines your success. Surveys have revealed that business executives spend a good deal of time making presentations of different types. Whatever the nature of the presentation, it requires planning, developing a structure and strategy and using supports, to make it effective. Oral communication has some advantages compared to written communication. These include its personal quality, high interactivity, possibility of making immediate contact, instantaneous feedback and control over the receiver’s attention. Oral communication was also classified into oral face-to-face communication (meetings and presentations) and oral non face-to-face communication (teleconferencing, telephone and voice mail).While face-to-face meetings are more effective than non face-to-face communication in most ways, they are expensive and impractical sometimes, due to the distance factor. Thanks to advances in technology, meetings today can still take place without being face-

to-face, through teleconferencing. Teleconferencing allows participants at distant locations to speak and sometimes to see each other. Apart from the high cost and the difficulty in setting it up, teleconferencing has the same advantages as oral face-to-face communication. Example – Several retailers like Walmart, the world’s largest retailer, make use of teleconferencing to keep their US headquarters in touch with their store managers worldwide. Some headhunters also make use of the facility to conduct preliminary interviews and shortlist candidates based in other countries, before inviting them for a face-to-face interview. Many multi-national corporations and large Indian organizations also use this facility extensively. In spite of its advantages, teleconferencing will not replace face-to-face meetings completely, since it is unsuitable for certain types of communication that involve brainstorming, negotiations, persuasion and problem solving. Telephone communication, another form of non face-to-face communication, has the biggest advantage of being able to contact a receiver who would be impossible to reach in person. Today, mobile phones have made it even easier to contact people who are on the move. Telephone communication also has a personal quality and permits the use of some non-verbal cues such as tone of voice, to enhance the communication. Voice mail is a type of telephone communication and is similar to an answering machine. Although it is generally inferior to speaking in person to the other party, it has some advantages. When you leave a recorded message, you can make your point felt and save time that might be wasted in exchanging pleasantries. Invitations can also be declined without having to give an explanation or reason, or having the other person talk back. Thus, there is greater control over how the message is composed and delivered. Besides, voice mail also makes it possible to keep a permanent record of the communication,

unlike other types of oral communication. In spite of these advantages however, voice mail has not caught on in India.

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