Important Business Communication Notes

Business Communication

"Business Communication is the most important skill any leader can possess"

What is Business ?

Business is an economic activity, which is related with continuous and regular production and distribution of goods and services for satisfying human wants.

What is Communication?

Communication is sending and receiving information between two or more people.

What is business communication?

Business communication is information sharing between people within and outside an organization that is performed for the commercial benefit of the organization. It can also be defined as relaying of information within a business by its people.

Role of Business Communication in Management

  • Decision Making: Management is to take decision in different areas for the smooth functioning of the organization activities. Business Communication helps Management take proper and timely decision by providing information in relevant areas.
  • Execution of Plans: Business Communication helps collecting the relevant data from different sources. After the plan has been prepared, it requires implementation and Business Communication plays vital role in the execution of plans by circulating them among the officers and employees and by giving them necessary directions.
  • Planning: Planning is one of the most important Management functions. Business Communication facilitates the planning process by supplying information, opinions, ideas, logistics etc. from various quarters within and outside the organization. Without proper Business Communication no effective plan can be made and carried out.
  • Mutual Understanding and Co-operation: Effective Business Communication between the Management and the employees helps to bring about an atmosphere of mutual trust and confidence. if the employees known exactly what is expected from them and if the Management is aware of the potentialities and limitations of the employees both sides will get better returns. so, effective Business Communication is must for promoting a spirit of understanding and co-operation.
  • Elimination of Rumors: In an organization there are different types of people. Sometimes there may be rumors or fake information may be leaked out that creates unrest among employees. If there is well established Business Communication system, Management can continuously keep in touch with the employees about every change in the organization that reduces the rumors.
  • Raising Employee Morale: Morale is the individual and collective spirit and moral condition of employees with regard to discipline and confidence. Low morale makes the employees idle and frustrated. Management always ties to raise the morale of employees through Business Communication to that they think that they are important for the organization.
  • Controlling: Controlling is an important function of Management and Business Communication plays vital role in this controlling process. Business Communication provides information to the top executive on different issues that helps the Management establish a well managed controlling system in the organization.
  • Co-ordination: In this age of specialization, there are various departments in an organization like planning, production, marketing, administration etc. if these departments do not communicate with one another as well as with the Management, there will be no co-ordination among them. So, Business Communication is inevitable in the organization for bringing co-ordination among the various departments.
  • Counseling: Counseling is an organized and specialized form of advice. Counseling is objective, impersonal and professional. A number of large Business Organizations have their counseling departments. Services of specialists are engaged for this purpose and employees receive free medical advice, legal advice and vocational guidance etc.
  • Directing the Subordinates: The subordinates of an organization need necessary directions and orders from their superiors for better job performance. so, Business Communication is required for directing the subordinates.
  • Creating Image: Business Communication creates image of the organization by linking various parties that helps the organization to survive in the competitive environment.

Barriers to Effective Communication

  • Physical Barriers: this has to do with poor or outdated equipment used during communications, background noise, poor lighting, temperatures that are too hot or too cold..
  • Attitudes: emotions like anger or sadness can taint objectivity. Also being extremely nervous, having a personal agenda or "needing to be right no matter what" can make communications less than effective. This is also known as "Emotional Noise".
  • Language: this can seem like an easy one, but even people speaking the same language can have difficulty understanding each other if they are from different generations or from different regions of the same country. Slang, professional jargon and regional colloquialisms can even hurt communicators with the best intentions.
  • Problems with Structure Design: companies or institutions can have organization structures that are not clear, which can make communications difficult. Also to blame for faulty communications are bad information systems, and lack of supervision or training of the people involved.
  • Physiological Barriers: ill health, poor eyesight or hearing difficulties, pain.
  • Cultural Noise: people sometimes make stereotypical assumptions about others based on their cultural background.
  • Lack of Common Experience: it's a great idea to use examples or stories to explain a point that is being discussed. However, if the speaker and the audience cannot relate to these examples because they do not have the same knowledge or have not shared the same experiences then this tool will be ineffective.
  • Ambiguity and Abstractions Overuse: leaving things half-said, using too many generalizations, proverbs or sayings, can all lead to communications that are not clear and that can lend themselves to misinterpretations. Info Overload Barriers Effective Communication
  • Jumping to Conclusions: This can make someone reach a decision about something before listening to all the facts..
  • Information Overload: it takes time to process a lot of information and too many details can overwhelm and distract the audience from the important topics. Keep it Simple, Sweetie.

7Cs of Business Communication

  • Consideration: The sender must take into consideration the receiver's opinions, knowledge, mindset, background, etc. in order to have an effective communication. In order to communicate, the sender must relate to the target recipient and be involved
  • Correct: The message should be correct, i.e. a correct language should be used, and the sender must ensure that there is no grammatical and spelling mistakes. Also, the message should be exact and well-timed. The correct messages have a greater impact on the receiver and at the same time, the morale of the sender increases with the accurate message.
  • Complete: The message should be complete, i.e. it must include all the relevant information as required by the intended audience. The complete information gives answers to all the questions of the receivers and helps in better decision-making by the recipient.
  • Concise: The sender should avoid the lengthy sentences and try to convey the subject matter in the least possible words. The short and brief message is more comprehensive and helps in retaining the receiver's attention.
  • Clear: The message should be clear and easily understandable to the recipient. The purpose of the communication should be clear to sender then only the receiver will be sure about it
  • Complete: The message should be complete, i.e. it must include all the relevant information as required by the intended audience. The complete information gives answers to all the questions of the receivers and helps in better decision-making by the recipient.
  • Courteous: It implies that the sender must take into consideration both the feelings and viewpoints of the receiver such that the message is positive and focused at the audience.

Elements of Business Communication Process

  • Sender: The sender or the communicator is the person who initiates the conversation and has conceptualized the idea that he intends to convey it to others.
  • Encoding: The sender begins with the encoding process wherein he uses certain words or non-verbal methods such as symbols, signs, body gestures, etc. to translate the information into a message. The sender's knowledge, skills, perception, background, competencies, etc. has a great impact on the success of the message.
  • Message: Once the encoding is finished, the sender gets the message that he intends to convey. The message can be written, oral, symbolic or non-verbal such as body gestures, silence, sounds, etc. or any other signal that triggers the response of a receiver.
  • Communication Channel: The Sender chooses the medium through which he wants to convey his message to the recipient. It must be selected carefully in order to make the message effective and correctly interpreted by the recipient. The choice of medium depends on the interpersonal relationships between the sender and the receiver and also on the urgency of the message being sent.
  • Receiver: The receiver is the person for whom the message is intended or targeted. He tries to comprehend it in the best possible manner such that the communication objective is attained. The degree to which the receiver decodes the message depends on his knowledge of the subject matter, experience, trust and relationship with the sender.
  • Decoding: Here, the receiver interprets the sender's message and tries to understand it in the best possible manner. An effective communication occurs only if the receiver understands the message in exactly the same way as it was intended by the sender..
  • Feedback: The Feedback is the final step of the process that ensures the receiver has received the message and interpreted it correctly as it was intended by the sender. It increases the effectiveness of the communication as it permits the sender to know the efficacy of his message. The response of the receiver can be verbal or non-verbal.

Types of Business Communication

  • According to Organizational Structure
    1. Formal Communication
    2. Informal Communication
  • According to Expression
    1. Oral Communication
    2. Written Communication
    3. Electronic Communication
  • According to Direction
    1. Downward Communication
    2. Upward Communication
    3. Horizontal Communication

  1. Formal Communication: Communications which are associated with a formal organization structure and which are to be sent through the formal or officially recognized channels are called formal communications. Generally, orders, instructions, decisions, of the superior officer, etc. are communicated through this channel
  2. Informal Communication: Informal communications are also known as 'grapevine' communications. In the case of informal communication, the formal channels of communication are not used. Informal communication may be conveyed by a gesture, nod, smile etc.
  3. Oral Communication: This is the oldest form of business communication, but it still remains popular. This interaction method includes live meetings, face-to-face interviews, personal task assignments, and some other related methods. There are some people who consider verbal communication as the best form of business communication, because of its simplicity and its direct interaction between the participants.
  4. Written communication: Written communication includes internal business memos, formal letters, bulletin boards or posters and other various written communication forms. Individuals may choose to use written communication if they need to reach multiple individuals at different locations with a similar message.
  5. Electronic Communication: Business technology has opened up new types of business communications. New communication methods include email, web conferencing, social networking, company websites, online chat and text messages. Electronic communication allows companies to send mass messages to several individuals quickly and at a low business cost.
  6. Upward Communication: Upward communication is the flow of information from subordinates to superiors, or from employees to management. Without upward communication, management works in a vacuum, not knowing if the messages have been received properly, or if other problems exist in the organization.
  7. Downward Communication: Information flowing from the top of the organizational management hierarchy and telling people in the organization what is important (mission) and what is valued (policies). Downward communication generally provides information - which allows a subordinate to do something
  8. Horizontal/Literal communication: Horizontal communication normally involves coordinating information, and allows people with the same or similar rank in an organization to cooperate or collaborate.
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