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Chapter 9

BUS 272 Chapter Notes - Chapter 9: Active Listening, Interpersonal Communication, Nonverbal Communication

Business Administration
Course Code
BUS 272
Sam Ajit Thiara

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BUS 272 – CH. 9 Communicating in Organizations
Communication: process by which information is transmitted and understood
The Importance of Communication
-6 functions in an organization:
ocoordination, organizational learning, decision making, change behavior,
supports employee well-being, those who speak assertively are perceived to be
more competent & cooperative
A Model of Communication
-sender forms a message & communicates it to the receiver receiver decodes
message. Sender looks for clues that the person received the message
-communication isn’t free flowing, there’s noise that distorts the message
Influences on Effective Encoding & Decoding: success of communication depends on how
well sender & receiver encode & decode message
-similar codebook: when sender & receiver assign the same meaning to symbols & signs
-message encoding proficiency (speaker should be able to communicate well): through
experience transmition of message improves
-communication channel motivation & ability: different means of communication affects
how well message is communicated b/c different people are better at different things ex.
Better at face to face communication, emails, twitter etc
-shared mental models of the communication context: similar expectations of the
contextual features of information. Ex. Russian astronaut vs. Canadian astronaut they
have same mental model about features of the ISS but can’t communicate properly b/c
of language barrier (different codebooks)
Communication Channels
-2 main types of channels: verbal & non verbal
Internet based communication
-email preferred choice of communication in business.
Problems with email (4 top complaints)
-Poor medium for communicating emotions: proliferation of email, workplaces
encouraged to send less emails, b/c face to face communication can sometimes solve
an issue quickly rather than emailing
-Reduces Politeness & respect: easier for people to send strong emotional responses
through an impersonal channel
-Poor mdedium for ambiguous, complex, and Novel situations: when communicating
large amount of info w/ more feedback, face to face is better
-Contributes to information overload: lots of email being send
Workplace communication through social media
-Social media interacts with its users, companies want employees to interact w/
collegues. Some companies have their own portal to connect employees in the same
Nonverbal communication
-Nonverbal vs verbal: 1) nonverbal is ambiguous & susceptible to misinterpretation 2)
nonverbal is automatic, nonconscious
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- Emotional contagion: automatic process of mimicking another person’s emotions.
Influence communication & social relationships in 3 ways
oGive continuous feedback: mimicking other person’s emotion communicates that
we empathize & understand the speaker
oHelps us feel what other person is feeling: when you frown you feel the emotion
your coworker felt, more fully
oFulfills drive to bond: when people see that other people share the same emotion
they feel, it strengthens relationships
Choosing the Best Communication Channel
-2 factors to consider when choosing the most appropriate channel: social acceptance &
media richness
Social Acceptance
-how well the communication medium is accepted by those who use it. 3 factors
1) organizational, team, cultural norms: some organizations, cultures, value certain types of
communication more than others. Ex. In korea, more likely to conduct meetings than
2) individual preferences: different people like different things, due to personality traits
3) symbolic meaning of a channel: some channels are considered more professional than
others, more “cool”, casual, old-fashioned etc
Media Richness
- media richness: the volume & variety of information that can be transmitted over time
-a channel has media richness when it can convey a lot of info, has timely feedback, &
can adjust info, & can use complex symbols. Face to face is at the top
-lean media: better for routine situations
-rich media: better for unexpected/ complex situations
-ex having a meeting to discuss routine situations wastes time, emailing a complex
situation takes longer to resolve, more misunderstandings
-expectations to media richness theory: 3 reasons why electronic channels have is more
media rich than what the theory says it has
1) can multi-communicate: people can send as much info using 2 or more lean
electronic media as through 1 high media rich channel
2) people can be very efficient with handling electronic information, but there’s
less variation of proficiency in ability to communicate when face to face
3) social presence can distort info. Worrying about how you are perceived by
others takes your attention away from what is being communicated can
distort the info you receive
Communication Channels & Persuasion
-Some media platforms are more effective at persuasion: using facts, logical arguments,
emotional appeals to change another person’s beliefs & attitudes
-Spoken communication better at this for 3 reasons
1) Face to face allows you to communicated verbally & non verbally subtlties of
raising your voice, animated hand gestures, emotional tone of the
message, makes issue seem more important
2) Gives sender immediate feedback, allows them to adjust what they say
3) Social presence makes those listening more motivated to pay attention &
consider them
-Written communication can also persuade, especially for when using information that is
very technical
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