Communication can seem to be not a very complicated process. The sender passes on a message to the receiver. The information encounters some communicative interference which can, but do not have to, lead to the modification of the content. These communica
Communication can seem to be not a very complicated process. The sender passes on a message to the receiver. The information encounters some communicative interference which can, but do not have to, lead to the modification of the content. These communicative interferences need not appear every time we communicate. Company communication is a part of every company’s organizational culture. This culture can be strong, weak, or ineffective in decision making processes, however, there is no doubt that every company has some sort of culture, though it might not be aware of that. Before moving to the presentation of the most effective ways of communication, we will define the notion of organizational culture, and we will describe what the place of employee communication processes within this culture is.
The term organizational culture should be understood as a set of certain values cherished by all members of a given company. Moreover, it is also a set of fixed patterns of organizational behavior that is applied in specific situations. These values and patterns should be solid and highly respected by everyone at an enterprise, including the highest ranking management. Values and patterns of behavior in reference to organizational culture can be seen in the attitudes of employees, the rules of carrying out action, or even in the habits and rituals characteristic for a company. The culture is not a single pattern of action. It consists of many elements and encompasses the basic values inscribed in the purpose of the company’s existence. It also consists of some economic aims which undoubtedly have a significant influence on a company’s main goal. All of these create some borderlines for functioning, and these borders should not be crossed under any circumstances. It must not be forgotten that organizational culture can also refer to any form of coexistence between individuals in an organization. This refers to the many ways in which employees communicate with each other, as well as with clients and contractors. The culture specifically describes the way in which communication works within a company and beyond its borders – in the surroundings in which it functions.
The process of communication, with its style and characteristic features, is truly one of the most important elements in every enterprise’s organizational culture. By careful observation of other companies we are able to identify totally different models of intra-company communication. In a great majority of large enterprises, employees make use of formal methods of communication, which are fixed into some official patterns and boundaries, as well as informal ways of communicating which have no such limitations. There are also companies which rely entirely on informal channels when it comes to internal communication. Such channels are usually much faster and more effective, but on the other hand, they are more prone to suffer from communicative interference. It must be said that the more formal obstacles in the official flow of information there are, the faster the informal methods of communication evolve because they make it much easier to pass on certain messages to friends from other departments.
How to manage information in a company?
There is no doubt that in this age of information-dominated environment every piece of data is highly valued. In some cases, information is not only a commodity which can be sold or passed on to someone, but it can at the same time be the source of one’s power. In large companies, in which the organizational structure is divided into different departments, it is very important to carry out effective and, most of all, highly successful communication. Without it, it would be impossible to carry out any large scale projects because such major undertakings demand much attention from all members of an enterprise as they have to exchange information about the progress they made, the problems that appeared, or the solutions they came up with in reference to some previous issues. In order to strengthen the intra-company communication and better manage information transfer within an enterprise, a computer based managing system can be implemented. Every employee should be given access to this database. The computer communication system increases the effectiveness of communication and, simply, in many cases, makes the life of employees much easier. In a situation in which different departments do not communicate with each other, the flow of information is obstructed, and the company cannot normally function. It is important to keep watch over the information management process and the flow of data in a company as they should be as effective as possible. Information management should be assigned to a manager or a director of a given department. It should be up to him or her to develop as effective patterns of information exchange as possible.
The stages of the development of an effective system of communication
Every manager who takes up the task of developing an effective system of sharing and using the information that is flowing through his or her enterprise should concentrate on a few key issues. Some of them are as follows:
The identification of problems and their approachable presentation
Listing of possible ways of coping with more or less difficult problems which appear during every stage of the development of a given undertaking
The formulation of long-term aims for every different part of an enterprise. These aims should be clear to all employees
The analysis of the capabilities of the manager’s own department or section of a company with reference to a given task
The establishment of the position of the manager’s company with reference to its closer and further surroundings, and the reaction towards the changes that happen in these environments
The formulation of a strategy for reaching previously established goals
The skillful presentation of the qualities necessary for the proper development and organization of an enterprise. The qualities should be promoted as possible to achieve.
New models of communication
Nowadays, company communication is much different than it used to be in the past. This is due to the changes that were introduced to the organizational culture of an enterprise. Once people recognized how important information, communication, and knowledge are for an enterprise’s success, the three factors gained in significance. Without effective communication between employees, an enterprise does not have a chance to accomplish its strategic aims.
The changes are beneficial for all active employees who are engaged in a company’s undertakings; people who are resourceful, creative, have extensive knowledge, and are not afraid of new challenges. Unfortunately, the new approach also brings losses that are related to those employees who are unable to adjust to the new conditions. Such people can stick to the old patterns for years because they are afraid of novelties. For them, a change is always a shift to something worse and not an improvement of their situation. In new surroundings, the old patterns of thought and action usually do not prove to be effective.
Effective communication is usually a far-fetched concept for national offices and large scale public working places. They are unable to modernize their organizational culture, and so, they cannot change their internal and external patterns of communication. Because of that, they lose many lucrative contracts and have significant problems related to finances and organization. Such old-fashioned ways of thinking do not bring profit because they make it more difficult to undertake any interesting projects that could positively change the face of the company. Moreover, the company cannot develop on the market in which it functions.
The implementation of new ways of communicating and the development of a market oriented organizational culture are very important to all companies that want to follow the new trends and fulfill the ever-increasing demands of clients. Nowadays, a client is the most important factor, and an enterprise should do everything in order to make a client feel completely satisfied. Unfortunately, in order to make that happen, constant changes are necessary in the field of structural organization, the patterns of communication, and, therefore, in the cultural organization of a company as such.
There exists a huge social opposition towards implementing changes. It is usually related to older members of the staff and to those who occupy managing positions as they are afraid to lose their posts. Every change successfully destroys the contemporary order of things; it disturbs the integrity of an organization, but at the same time brings about good, better than before, solutions. Changes often evoke negative emotions that lead to conflicts. Intra-company communication also proves to be useful in coping with such issues. Undoubtedly, an employee will evaluate a change in a reasonable way if he or she is given detailed information concerning it, along with reasons for its implementation and the expected results.
Effective communication in a company is a result of many different actions. How it is functioning depends on managers and directors, so, basically, all the people whose role is to carry out important decisions. A very interesting and, at the same time, a very successful method that contributes to the increase of effectiveness of company communication is the introduction of modern, state-of-the-art computer solutions. Data managing applications already exist, and there are absolutely no reasons for not implementing them to the structures of every modern thinking enterprise. Such programs help keep every employee informed, and a well informed worker, that has extensive data about a given undertaking and the aims of the entire enterprise, works a lot more effectively. Lack of information is the biggest threat to the effectiveness of every modern company.