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Chapter 10

Chapter 10 BU288.docx

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Ping Zhang

BU288 Chapter 10 - Communication Week 10 What is Communication? -Communication – the process by which information is exchanged between a sender and a receiver -Interpersonal communication is the exchange of information between people -The simplest prototype for interpersonal communication is a one-on-one exchange between two individuals -The sender must encode his or her thoughts into some form that can be transmitted to the receiver -The receiver must perceive the message and accurately decode it to achieve accurate understanding -Effective communication – communication whereby the right people receive the right information in a timely manner Basics of Organizational Communication Communication by Strict Chain of Command -Chain of command – lines of authority and formal reporting relationships -Downward communication – information that flows from the top of the organization toward the bottom -Upward communication – information that flows from the bottom of the organization toward the top -Horizontal communication – information that flows between departments or functional units, usually as a means of coordinating effort Deficiencies in the Chain of Command -Managers recognize that sticking strictly to the chain of command is often ineffective Informal Communication -The chain of command fails to consider informal communication between members -An informal grapevine might spread unsavoury, inaccurate rumours across the organization Filtering -Filtering – the tendency for a message to be watered down or stopped during transmission -Employees are supposed to filter down messages on the one hand, however overzealous filtering will preclude the right people from getting the right information, and the organization will suffer accordingly -Upward filtering often occurs because employees are afraid that their boss will use the information against them -Downward filtering is often due to time pressures or simple lack of attention to detail -Open door policy – the opportunity for employees to communicate directly with a manager without going through the chain of command -Such a policy should decrease the upward filtering of sensitive information if subordinates trust the system Slowness -The chain of command can be slow -The chain of command can be even slower for horizontal communication between departments, and it is not a good mechanism for reacting quickly to customer problems Manager-Employee Communication -Perceptions that managers are good communicators tend to be correlated positively with BU288 Chapter 10 - Communication Week 10 organizational performance How Good is Manager-Employee Communication? -Managers and employees often differ in their perceptions of the following issues: -How employees should and do allocate time -How long it takes to learn a job -The importance employees attach to pay -The amount of authority an employee has -The employee’s skills and abilities -The employee’s performance and obstacles to good performance -The manager’s leadership style Barriers to Effective Manager-Employee Communication Conflicting Role Demands Mum Effect -Mum effect – the tendency to avoid communicating unfavourable news to others -The sender does not need to be responsible for the bad news for the mum effect to occur -The mum effect does not apply only to employees -Managers evidently avoided communicating bad news for which they were partly responsible, since they themselves had done the performance ratings The Grapevine Characteristics of the Grapevine -Grapevine – an organization’s informal communication network -The grapevine often cuts across formal lines of communication that are recognized by management -75% of the grapevine is correct Who Participates in the Grapevine? -Personality characteristics -Those who lack self-esteem -The nature of the information might also influence who chooses to pass it on Pros and Cons of the Grapevine -The grapevine can become a real problem for the organization when it becomes a constant pipeline for rumours -Rumour – an unverified belief that is in general circulation -Rumors seem to spread fastest and farthest when the information is especially ambiguous, when the content of the rumour is important to those involved, when the rumour seems credible, and when the recipient is anxious The Verbal Language of Work -Jargon – specialized language used by job holders or members of particular occupations or organizations BU288 Chapter 10 - Communication Week 10 -COMVOC is common vocabulary -Local jargon might serve as a barrier to clear communication between departments such as sales and engineering -A serious problem with the use of jargon is the communication barrier that it presents to those outside of the organization or profession The Non-Verbal Language of Work -Non-verbal communication – the transmission of messages by some medium other than speech or writing -Non-verbal messages can be very powerful in that they often convey “the real stuff”, which words serve as a smoke screen -Ex. Raised eyebrows, an empathetic shrug Body Language -Body language – non-verbal communication by means of a sender’s bodily motions, facial expressions, or physical location -Senders communicate liking and interest in the receiver when: -they position themselves physically close to the receiver -they touch the receiver during the interaction -they maintain eye contact with the receiver -they lean forward during the interaction; and -direct the torso toward the receiver -Senders who feel themselves to be of higher status than the receiver act more relaxed than those who perceive themselves to be of lower status -Relaxation is demonstrated by: the casual, asymmetrical placement of arms and legs -a reclining, non-erect seating position -a lack of fidgeting and nervous activity -The greater the difference in relaxation between two parties, the more they communicate a status differential to each other -It is difficult to regulate non-verbal behaviour when we are feeling very strong emotions -Body language has an impact n the outcome of employment interview decisions -Smiling, gesturing, and maintaining eye contact have a favourable impact on interviewers when they are not overdone Props, Artifacts, and Costumes Office Décor and Arrangement -The manner in which people decorate and arrange their offices tells you something about the occupant -Students feel more comfortable in professor’s offices when the office was tidy, decorated with posters and plants, and the desk was against the wall instead of between the professor and student -Neatness is a typical cue for conscientiousness and distinctive décor for openness Does Clothing Communicate? -The clothing organizational members wear sends clear signals about their competence, seriousness, and promotability BU288 Chapter 10 - Communication Week 10 -Clothing does indeed communicate -If clothing does indeed communicate, it may do so partly because of the impact it has on the wearer’s own self-image -Proper clothing may enhance self-esteem and self-confidence to a noticeable degree Gender Differences in Communication -Girls see conversations as a way to develop relationships and networks of connection and intimacy -Boys view conversations as a way for them to achieve status within groups and to maintain independence -Ex. A woman comes up with a great idea and by the end of the meeting, one of her male peers receives credit for it -There are a number of key differences in male and female communication styles and rituals that often place women in a one-down position: -Getting credit – Men will blow their own horn about something good them have done -Confidence and boasting – Men tend to be more boastful about themselves -Asking questions – Men are less likely than women to ask questions -Apologies – Men see apologies as weakness -Feedback – Women will often buffer criticism by beginning with praise, but men are blunt and straightforward -Compliments – Men ar
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