You are on page 1of 52

What is Communication?

an act or instance of transmitting;
a verbal or written message;
a process by which information is
exchanged between individuals
through a common system of
symbols, signs, or behavior; also :
exchange of information;
Functions of Communication
Controls members behavior.
When employees are required to communicate any job
related grievance to their immediate boss, to follow their job
description, or to comply with company policies,
communication is performing a control function.
Authority hierarchy and formal guidelines are used as a
control mechanism.
Communication fosters motivation by clarifying to employees
what is to be done, how well they are doing, and what can
be done to improve performance if its subpar.
Functions of Communication
Emotional expression:
The communication that takes place within the group
is a fundamental mechanism by which members show
their frustration and feelings of satisfaction.
It provides release for the emotional expression of
feelings and for fulfillment of social needs.
Communication provides the information that
individuals and groups need to make decisions by
transmitting the data to identify and evaluate
alternative choices.
Elements of Communication
The person who attempts to share
information to other people.
Process of transferring and translating
the ideas and thoughts into a message
which represent ideas or concepts.
Content of communication

Communication channel refers to the medium of communication
chose by sender to transmit the message.
Formal channel are established by the organization and transmit
messages that are related to the professional activities of
members. They follow the authority chain within the
Other forms of messages, such as personal or social, follow the
informal channels in the organization. These informal channels
are spontaneous and emerge as a response to individual choices.
The receiver decodes the information into an
useful form using their sensory organs.


The person who received the message from

the sender.
The receiver communicates back to the
Facial expression

Interference or interruption during the process of
delivering the message that makes it difficult for
the receiver to interpret the message. This can lead
to communication breakdown.

Physiological noise
Physical noise
Psychological noise
Semantic noise

Direction of Communication



Interpersonal communication(Methods)
Oral Communication:
Chief means of conveying messages.
Speeches, formal one-on-one and group discussions, and the
informal rumor mill or grapevine
Advantages are speed and feedback
Disadvantage is the distortion of message.
Written Communication
Includes memo, letters, fax transmission, electronic mail,
instant messaging, organizational periodicals, notices placed
on bulletin boards, or any other device that is transmitted
via written words or symbols.
Advantages are tangibility, recordable, storable
Drawbacks are time-consuming, lack of feedback
Methods of communicating
Nonverbal Communication
Nonverbal communication includes body
movements, the intonations or emphasis we
give to words, facial expressions.
A glance, a stare, a smile, a frown, and a
provocative body movement all convey
A body position or movement when linked
with spoken language, it gives fuller meaning
to a senders message.
Intonations: Its the Way You Say It!
Communication Networks
Formal Networks:
Vertical channels, follow the
authority chain, task-related
Circle network: The information
moves in a circle, i.e., each
person can communicate with
other members on both sides
but not with anyone else.
Formal Small-Group Networks

Chain network: Here

the information flows
only upward or
downward in a
hierarchical chain of
Formal Small-Group Networks

Wheel network: It
relies on leader to
act as the central
conduit for all
communication. All
information flows
through leader.
Formal Small-Group Networks

All channel network:

It permits all group
members to actively
communicate with
each other. It is
2003 Prentice Hall Inc. All rights
Communication Networks
Informal Networks:
Communication network in an organization in
which group of people who develop and maintain
contact for informal exchange of information. It
involves flow of rumors through grapevine.
The Grapevine
Grapevine is an informal communication, unorganized
and unofficial channel of communication in an
organization. When the formal channels fail or do not
work properly and some over-smart people spread
rumors, false and irresponsible statement or half-truths
in all the directions. It is called the communication on
the grapevine channel
Three Main Grapevine Characteristics:
1. Informal, not controlled by management
2. Perceived by most employees as being more believable and
reliable than formal communications
3. Largely used to serve the self-interests of those who use it
Results from:
Desire for information about important situations
Ambiguous conditions
Conditions that cause anxiety
Communication Networks
Informal Networks:
Single Strand: Each tells one another.
Gossip network: One individual communicates
with everyone.
Probability network: Member communicates
randomly with other members.
Cluster network: Some members tell others who
they can trust.
Informal Networks:
Barriers of Communication
No matter how good the communication system in
an organization is, unfortunately barriers can and
do often occur . These barriers are: (or)

Communication of barriers are the difficulties

involved in the process of communication which
distort the message being properly understand by
the receiver
barriers prevent the communication from being
Barriers to Communication
Barriers to Effective Communication

Physical Barriers
Distance between sender and receiver
Improper encoding
Media Inefficiency
Distracting elements like noise , clutter and
information overload

Barriers to Effective Communication

Psychological Barrier
Psychological barriers is the self limiting beliefs a
person may have which in turn affects their
behavior - that is ....what they do or don't do as a
result of having a self limiting belief
The difference in background is overlooked
Economic background
Social background
Barriers to Effective Communication

Psychological Barrier
Self-Centred attitude
Self image
Selective perception
Resistance to change
Closed mind
Poor communication skills
State of health
Semantics, or code noise, occurs when the meaning
of a message to the sender differs from its meaning to
the recipient.
Too often, this may be the result of jargon, involving
pretentious terminology or language specific to a
particular profession or group.
Unclear message
Faulty translation
Specialists language
Message related barrier
If your message is too lengthy,
disorganized, or contains errors, you
can expect the message to be
misunderstood and misinterpreted.
Use of poor verbal and body language
can also confuse the message.
Organizational barrier
In organization the manager sends
information through circular,notice,letter
In organization many of the employees they
may not understand the lengthy messages if
they ask the senior persons will never
answer properly out of 100/20% of
information only they will get.
in organizations the senior peoples will not
give much interest to the circular and all.
In downward communication the subordinate
may not get exact information. Because of
superior carelessness.
In upward communication the subordinates
passes information to the superior but
that(100%) information will not move to
superior, the managers will edit the unwanted
information than finally they will send the
exact message.
Organizational barriers:
Status relationship
One way flow
Organization structure
Rules and regulations
Distance barriers
Physical barriers
Mechanical barriers
Culture Defined?
Sir Edward Tylors definition in 1871 (first
use of this term):
that complex whole which includes
knowledge, belief, art, morals, law,
custom, and any other capabilities and
habits acquired by man as a member of
Cross-Cultural Communication

Cultural Barriers
Cultural Context
A Cultural Guide
Cultural Barriers
Barriers caused by semantics: Words mean different things to
different people. Some words do not translate between
cultures. Nepali Anukaranatmak sabda
Barriers caused by connotations: Words imply different things
in different languages. Translation of the word Ok
Barriers caused by tone differences: In some cultures,
language is formal, in others its informal. In some cultures,
the tone changes depending on the context.
Barriers caused by differences among perceptions: People who
speak different languages actually view the world in different
ways. Eskimos perceive snow differently than American.
Hand Gestures Mean Different Things in
Different Countries

2003 Prentice Hall Inc. All rights

Hand Gestures Mean Different Things in
Different Countries (contd)

2003 Prentice Hall Inc. All rights

Cultural Context
Culture tend to differ in the
importance to which context
influences the meaning that
individuals take from what is
actually said or written in light of
who the other person is.
Cultural Classification--Hall

Low-Context Cultures
What Is Said Is More Important Than How or
Where It Is Said
Shorter relationship
Written agreements
Business comes first than friendship
Credibility through expertise and performance
Agreement by legal contract
Negoitation efficient
High-Context cultures
What Is Said and How or Where It is Said Are Significant
No business without friendship
Credibility through relationships
Agreements founded on trust
Negotiations slow & ritualistic
Latin America
Middle East
Geert Hofstedes cultural dimensions
Dr. Geert Hofstede
worked for IBM as
Psychologist from 1967-73
Geert Hofstede's
dimensions analysis can
assist the business person
or traveler in better
understanding the
intercultural differences
within regions and
between counties.
Individualism vs. Collectivism
Individualism (IDV) focuses on the degree the society
reinforces individual or collective, achievement and
interpersonal relationships.
A High Individualism ranking indicates that individuality is
of most importance within the society. Individuals in these
societies may tend to form a larger number of looser
A Low Individualism ranking typifies Collectivist societies
with close ties between individuals. These cultures
reinforce extended families and collectives where everyone
takes responsibility for fellow members of their group.
Individualism vs. Collectivism
Collectivist societies
Individualistic societies
Costa Rica
New Zealand
USA Asian countries
Power Distance
Power Distance Index (PDI) focuses on the degree
of equality between people in the country's society.
A High Power Distance ranking indicates that
inequalities of power and wealth are accepted in
A Low Power Distance ranking indicates the society
de-emphasizes the differences between citizen's
power and wealth. In these societies equality and
opportunity for everyone is stressed.
Uncertainty avoidance
Uncertainty Avoidance Index (UAI) level of tolerance for
uncertainty and ambiguity within the society - i.e. unstructured
High Uncertainty Avoidance ranking indicates country has a low
tolerance for uncertainty and ambiguity. This creates a rule-
oriented society that institutes laws, rules, regulations, and
controls in order to reduce the amount of uncertainty.
A Low Uncertainty Avoidance ranking indicates the country has
less concern about ambiguity and uncertainty and has more
tolerance for a variety of opinions.
This is reflected in a society that is less rule-oriented, more
readily accepts change, and takes more and greater risks.
Masculinity/femininity (MAS) focuses on degree the society
reinforces the traditional masculine work role model of male
achievement, control, and power.
A High Masculinity ranking indicates country experiences a
high degree of gender differentiation. In these cultures, males
dominate a significant portion of the society and power
structure, with females being controlled by male domination.
A Low Masculinity ranking indicates the country has a low
level of differentiation and discrimination between genders.
Females are treated equally to males in all aspects of the
Legal and Ethical Differences
Influence Cultural context
Bribing governmental officials

Social Differences
Attitude towards work and success
Roles and Status
Use of manners
Concept of time
Non Verbal Differences
Personal Space
Facial Expression
Eye Contact
A Cultural Guide

When communicating with people from a different cultures,

we can begin by trying to assess the cultural context in order
to reduce misperceptions, misinterpretations, and
misevaluations. The following are the rules:
Assume differences until similarity is proven: Most of us assume that
others are more similar to us than they actually are. But people
from different countries often are very different from us. So you are
far less likely to make an error if you assume others are different
from us.
Emphasize description rather than interpretation or evaluation:
Interpreting or evaluating what someone has said or done, in
contrast to description, is based more on the observers culture and
background than on the observed situation.
A Cultural Guide
Practice empathy: Before sending a message, put
yourself in the recipients shoes. What are his or her
values, experiences, education, upbringing, and
Treat your interpretations as a working hypothesis:
Once you have developed an explanation for a new
situation or think you empathize with someone from a
foreign culture, treat your interpretation as a
hypothesis that needs further testing rather than as a
certainty. Carefully assess the feedback provided by
recipients to see if it confirms your hypothesis.