Communication is essential for effective functioning in every part of an organisation. From marketing, production, finance, personnel, and maintenance, all departments may receive direction from corporate goals and objectives, but communication links them together and facilitates organisational success. The importance of effective communication from team leaders cannot be overemphasised for one specific reason: everything a team leader does, involves communicating.
Communication is needed to increase efficiency, satisfy customers, and improve quality. Effective communication is so important for organisational success that not only team leaders, but also the employees must be effective communicators. One role of a team leader is to help employees improve their communication skills. When all members of a team, department, or organisation are able to communicate effectively with each other and with people outside their group, they are much more likely to perform well. The successful team leader, therefore, needs effective communication skills.
Communication is the activity of conveying information. Communication requires a sender, a message, and an intended recipient. However, the receiver needs not to be present or be aware of the sender’s intent to communicate at the time of communication; thus, communication can occur across vast distances in time and space. Communication requires that the communicating parties share an area of communicative commonality. The communication process is complete once the receiver has understood the message of the sender.

Feedback is critical for effective communication between parties. Communication can be defined as the exchange of opinion, ideas, information, facts, feelings, and values between two or more persons sender and receiver’s) with the help of some channels to accomplish the desired purpose. The sender creates a message either in the written or in verbal or nonverbal form. The message is dispatched to the receiver with the help of channels of communication. The receiver takes the delivery of the message and provides feedback to the sender.
The sender gets the feedback and determines whether the receiver has received the same message and meaning that the sender had intended to communicate with him; if the sender feels that the receiver has not received the same message and meaning, he/she again initiates the cycle of communication. THE CYCLE OF COMMUNICATION Elements ot Communication 1 . Sender 2. Message 3. Channel of communication 4. Receiver 5. Feedback 1 . Sender: The sender is the person who initiates the process of communication.
Whenever the sender feels that there is a need to communicate some information to the other person (receiver), he/she starts the process of communication. The sender must be aware of the purpose of the communication and the receiver’s abilities to understand the message in terms of language, interest, etc. 2. Message: The message is created by the sender to convey the information, facts or opinion to the receiver. The message should be clear and simple so that the receiver can understand it in the same way as the sender desires.
While creating a message, the sender should take care of words, language, and meaning of the message if the message is to be communicated in verbal or written form or he/she should take care of body language and facial expression if the message is to be communicated in nonverbal form, along with the abilities and professional competencies of the receiver. 3. Channels of communication: Communication channels are the medium through which the message is communicated to the receiver. Channels of communication play an important role in the process of communication.
If the sender selects an appropriate medium or channel of communication, there are more chances that the receiver will receive the same message; or else, there are chances that the message may get distorted. In this hi-tech era, there are a number of channels that can be used to communicate message, e. g. , mobile, e-mail, voice mail, person, radio, TV, Internet, blogs, etc. 4. Receiver: The receiver is the person who receives the message. The receiver may be a single person or a group of persons. The receiver understands the eaning of the message and provides feedback to the sender.
The receiver should have the same language ability, comprehension, and cultural background as the sender. If not, it may lead to distorted understanding of the meaning of the message by the receiver. 5. Feedback: It is the most crucial element of communication. It is provided by the receiver to the sender. Receiving feedback is important for the sender to know that the receiver has received the message and interpreted the meaning of the message in the desired way. Without feedback, the process of communication cannot be complete.
For example, when you send a mobile SMS to our friend, you get feedback in the form of delivery report that informs you whether your message has been delivered or not to the intended receiver; it also happens in the same way the case of e-mail. BARRIERS OF COMMUNICATION Communication plays a major role in developing a relationship. It can also a relationship among family members or management in any institute. More specifically, communication influences the effectiveness of instruction, performance evaluation, and the handling of discipline problems.
Communication should be straightforward. What can make it complex, difficult, and frustrating are the barriers. Some barriers of communication are the following. Physiological barriers to communication are related with the limitations of the human body and the human mind (memory, attention, and perception). Physiological barriers may result from individuals’ personal discomfort, caused by ill-health, poor eye sight, or hearing difficulties. Poor listening skills, listening to others is considered a difficult task. The solution is to be an active rather than passive listener.
A listener’s premature frown, shaking of the head, or bored look can easily convince the other person/speaker that here is no reason to elaborate or try again to communicate. Information overload, it is essential to control the flow of the information, else the information is likely to be misinterpreted or forgotten or overlooked. As a result, communication may get distorted. Inattention, at times we Just do not listen but only hear. For example, your manager is immersed in his/her very important paper work and you are explaining to him/her about an urgent problem.
In this situation, due to the inattention, the manager will not listen to you (he/she will only hear you); hence, he/she may not get hat you are saying and it may lead to disappointment. Emotions, the emotional state of a person at a particular point of time affects his/her communication with others as it has an impact on the body language (nonverbal communication). If the receiver feels that the sender is angry (emotional state), he/she can easily infer that the information being obtained will be very poor.
Poor retention, the human memory cannot function beyond a limit. People cannot always retain all the facts/information about what is being told to them especially if he/she is not interested or not attentive. This leads to communication breakdown. Physical and environmental distractions, physical distractions are the physical things that get in the way of communication. Examples of such things include the telephone, an uncomfortable meeting place, and noise. These physical distractions are common in the warehouse setting.
If the telephone rings, the usual human tendency will be to answer it even if the caller is interrupting a very important or even delicate conversation. Distractions such as background noise, poor lighting, uncomfortable sitting, unhygienic room, or an environment that is too hot or cold can affect people’s morale and concentration, hich in turn interfere with effective communication. Psychological barriers, psychological factors such as misperception, filtering, distrust, unhappy emotions and people’s state of mind can Jeopardize the process of communication.
We all tend to feel happier and more receptive to information when the sun shines. Similarly, if someone has personal problems such as worries and stress about a chronic illness, it may impinge his/her communication with others. Social barriers, social barriers to communication include conformity, a process in which the norms, values, and behaviours of an individual begin to follow those of the wider group. Social factors such as age, gender, and marital status may act as a barrier to communication in certain situations.
Cultural barriers, cultural barriers to communication often arise when individuals in one social group have developed different norms, values, or behaviours to individuals associated witn another group. Cultural ditterence leads to difference in interest, knowledge, value, and tradition. Therefore, people of different cultures will experience these culture factors as a barrier to communicate with each other. Semantic barriers, language, Jargon, slang, etc. , are some of the semantic arriers. Different languages across different regions represent a national barrier to communication.
The Use of Jargon and slang also act as barrier to communication. Past Experience, if someone has awful experiences in the past related to some particular situation, then he/she will try to avoid communication in that situation. Organisational Barriers, unclear planning, structure, information overload, and timing, technology, and status difference are the organisational factors that may act as barriers to communication. Technological failure, message not delivered due to technical failure (e. g. receiver was not in mobile network area and the sender has not activated delivery report in message setting).
Time pressures, often, in an organisation the targets have to be achieved within a specified time period, the failure of which may have adverse consequences for the employee. In a haste to meet deadlines, usually an employee tries to shorten the formal channels of communication that can lead to confusion and misunderstanding among the various levels of supervisors, hence leading distorted communication. Therefore, sufficient time should be given for effective communication. Complexity in the organisational tructure, the greater the hierarchy in an organisation (i. . , the more the number of managerial levels), the more chances of communication getting destroyed. Only the people at the top level can see the overall picture while the people at low level Just have knowledge about their own area and a little knowledge about other areas of the organisation. Unclear messages, effective communication starts with a clear message. Unclear messages in terms of meaning, grammar, and words may act as a barrier to communication because the receiver may not be able to understand the actual meaning of the message.
Lack of feedback, feedback is the mirror of communication. Feedback mirrors what the sender has sent. Without feedback, communication cannot be considered complete. Both the sender and the receiver can play an active role in using feedback to make communication truly two-way. Methods of overcoming barriers of communication, overcoming the communication barriers will be different in different situations depending upon the type of barriers present. The following are some of the important general strategies that will be commonly useful in all the situations to overcome the barriers of communication.
Taking the receiver more seriously Crystal clear message Delivering messages skilfully Focusing on the receiver Using multiple channels to communicate instead of relying on one channel Ensuring appropriate feedback Be aware of your own state of mind/emotions/attitude Effective communication techniques are useful to make the communication efficient and meaningful. There are several techniques of effective communication, which can be used. For example, maintaining eye-to-eye contact with the team is essential for ettective communication.
Listening actively means to be attentive to what the other erson is saying verbally and nonverbally. Active listening is an effective communication skill. 1 . Stand squarely facing the other team; establish eye-to-eye contact. 2. Keep the posture open. 3. Be relaxed. Using silence during communication process can carry a variety of meanings. The impact from every conversation you have comes from your nonverbal cues. These include eye contact, your posture, and the gestures you make.
The nonverbal cues indicate what you think, even if your words say something else entirely. Some people don’t like to be touched, and invasion to their personal space is one nonverbal cue ou can easily avoid. Nonverbal cues are Just as important as any other communication technique you’re trying to master. The tone of your voice, for example, if you say that mfou’ll be happy to sacrifice this opportunity for someone,” but you’re yelling when you say it, the team will clearly notice that you’re actually not happy to do it.
Be consistent verbally and nonverbally inconsistency in verbal and nonverbal communication by the sender may lead to confusion and misunderstanding of the message. Ask open-ended questions open-ended questions encourage the team to communicate more, whereas, close-ended questions iscourage the team from communicating. Use Language Understood by the team. Accurate, accessible and detailed recording is not only essential it is a vital tool for ensuring accuracy of information, clarity of goals and accountability. Of course, it can achieve none of these aims if it is never read, and so in the first place it must be legible.
It is a team leader’s responsibility to ensure that, they record conversations, accurately, and that they retain the information available. Electronic copies of any form of communication i. e. emails can be copied saved and stored either into a eparate folder on your computer, or onto a USB storage device, or external hard drive alternately you should ensure that all emails are archived for future reference. Methods of Verbal Communication Face to face informal communication Underused in these days of email, but invaluable for getting the message behind the words.
Body language can tell you a lot about what a person really thinks regardless of whether they are agreeing with you verbally or not. Quite often we will email someone who only sits in the next room – or even at the other side of the same room, ‘because an email is recorded’. There is nothing to stop a record of a face to face meeting being created. Meetings Many meetings are badly planned and managed, this is one of the main disadvantages of meetings as no formal records or minutes are kept or recorded. Formal Briefings Useful to reach a mass audience.
Beware though if what you have to say is controversial or bad news for some of the audience then you will face a lot of resentment and create resistance, where staff feel unable to challenge you or to ask questions because there are so many people present. Verbal Communication has the following advantages: Saving of Time The greatest advantages of verbal communication is saving of time. Under this system of communication the messages are communicated immediately without consuming any time. Verbal communication is the only way out when a message is important and when immediate action is necessary.
Saving of Money As there is no tormal met nod ot communicating the message, no help ot any particular media this type of communication saves a lot of money. More Effective As the message is direct between the Senders of message and the receiver of message the messages prove to be more effective. The sender of the message can also exercise his personal influence over the receiver of message. Clear Doubts Verbal communication is also better as it removes any doubts regarding the message, between the sender and the receiver of message.
Any doubts can immediately be cleared and the receiver of the message can immediately get the explanations regarding the message. Increase in Productivity and Efficiency Verbal communication is more effective. It increases the productivity and efficiency of workers because they clearly understand it and follow it. Verbal communication has the following disadvantages: Lack of Proof of Message The greatest disadvantage of verbal communication is that there is no proof of the message being communicated.
Not Suitable for Future Reference As there is nothing in writing supporting the message communicated under this method, it is not suitable for future reference. If there is any dispute at any point with the message. Not Suitable in Case of Distance if the receiver and the sender of the message are living at a distance from each other, this method of communication is not suitable because it will increase the cost of communication, it ill not be effective because of lack of personal touch and it may not be clear and explanatory.
Many times, when people think of the word communication, they think of an exchange of information and ideas through words. However, verbal communication is just one small part of communication. There are many different methods of communication. Written You can’t avoid written communication in the workplace; it’s everywhere. Emails, memos, reports, and other written documents are all part of everyday business life. Written communication is the most appropriate when detailed instructions are equired, when something needs to be documented, or when the person is too far away to easily speak with over the phone or in person.
Email is a lifesaver for many people, especially in the business world. If you rely on emails and memos to conduct your business, it’s very important to portray a professional image. Don’t use abbreviations unless they pertain to your field, and always use spell check and read over your email before you send it to make sure it’s clear and concise. Emails should be brief and to the point. Non-verbal communication plays a large role in the way you communicate with thers. Unless you’re using sign language, however, you probably dont want to rely on it as your sole means of communication.
You do, however, need to be aware of it. Your gestures, eye contact and movement, and the way you stand and sit all convey a message to the person you are communicating with. Use gestures appropriately, or leave your hands at your sides. Don’t fidget, which is distracting, and avoid crossing your arms, which sends off the appearance of being angry or closed off. Always look the person you are speaking to in the eye, and don’t roll your eyes or stare while they talk. Email Effective where supported by the organisation, and where sent by the right person.
Emails that look as though they are selling something or that come from people the recipient has never heard of, are at high risk of being deleted without being read as they will be seen as potential spam. Newsletters Newsletter can be good for general awareness, but will normally only be well read if the newsletter is usually interesting and colourful. Notices/signs/posters Effective for messages or promotion of single issues although notice boards are not always the best place to put a notice that you want read. Signs need to be displayed where they can be easily seen but there is still no guarantee that they will be read.
Blogs Blogs are a good way of keeping people up-to-date, again, providing that there is a good reason for people to visit and read you blog these can also be limited to people with only a passing interest. The importance of keeping oral records Any oral communication where a decision or commitment is made, and that is not otherwise documented, needs to be captured and placed in your recordkeeping system. For example: A meeting or conference call where a decision is made, if formal eeting minutes or notes are not taken. A voice mail message committing to take action.
A telephone call responding to a member of staff. The issuing of verbal warnings. What types of communications are included? Face-to-face meetings Telephone calls Voice mail messages (including telephone or computer) What is the best way to capture conversations that are records? Write a memo in your diary. Be sure to include: Date and time of the communication Type of communication (e. g. , voice mail, telephone call) Participants Subject Details on any decisions or commitments What kind of electronic communications might be a record?
Any electronic communication where a decision or commitment is made, and that is not otherwise documented, needs to be captured and placed in your recordkeeping system. For example: E mails. A voice mail message committing to take action. All other forms of on line communication. E mails Any on line correspondence What is the best way to capture conversations that are records? Save to a file on your computer, or onto a USB drive, or external hard drive be sure to include: Date and time of the communication Type of communication