The Area of Organizational Communication


Organizational Communications involves an in-depth look into how important communication is in organizations. The goals and objectives of an organization should be effectively communicated to all the members of an organization so that they can be aware of what is expected of them both in the short run and in the long run. Effective communication of the goals and objectives that should be accomplished in an organization to the employees is one of the ways of ensuring that individual employees and teams in an organization are focused and motivated in the workplace (Kouze and Posner, 2007).

Effective organizational communication should be used together with innovative leadership skills so that organizations can function effectively. Leadership can be a challenging function especially when dealing with people from different social, economic, personality and academic backgrounds. While some individuals might be self starters and can work under minimal supervision, some individuals need to be pushed so that they can do what is expected of them. This might present challenges in the organization especially when individuals that might not be as highly productive as they should be, might be assigned to tasks that are necessary for achievement of the organizational objectives (Stoner & Freeman, 1992).

Literature Review

Organizational communications is a field that emerged in the time period between 1930 and 1950. One of the greatest pioneers in this field is Hebert Simon who won a Nobel Prize in 1947. Herbert had written a paper that focused on communication systems in business organizations and their role in the development of effectiveness in the organizations. Herbert is historically credited with introduction of the bounded rationality which emphasized that organizations are containers that deal with both internal and external communication to ensure that they run smoothly (Stoner & Freeman, 1992).

Peter Senge developed the concepts of organizational communication further by introduction of learning and thinking systems theories. Traditionally communication in organizations would be through meetings, memos, letters, reports, seminars and discussions. These days however, forms of communication within organizations have become more diverse and more technologically innovated (Conrad, 1994).

With the development of high technology devices and forms of communication such as video chat, e-mail and online chatting, different aspects determine communication in organizations such as the personalities of the individuals that are involved in the communication, the message to be delivered and the formalness of the message. Innovative changes that have taken place in organizations have led to the development of newer forms and methods of communication.

Changes that have taken place in organizations include; more workers are available in organizations and they are spread all over the globe especially for multinational organizations that have to consider the different cultural and language differences that might exist within their organizations.

Many organizations have developed over time which has led to the need for gaining a competitive edge in order for organizations to remain in the market. Organizations also want to be more competitive when benchmarked against organizations that offer similar products or services. Distributed work services are also available in organizations and most of these services also occur simultaneously with each other. There is also an increased need by many organizations to improve their communication systems and to develop more networks in order to increase market presence, reduce costs and increase their profit margin. Increased speed in work places in the production of commodities and services and the increased need for coordination and sharing of innovative ideas among team members and employees has also led to the development of organizational communications across the globe (Cheney, Christensen, Zorn & Ganesh, 2004).

Most of the time, organizational communication within the organization takes place from top to down (managers to employees) and not the other way around. Organizations that have been observed to have effective communication usually involve passing of information from the top managers to supervisors and then from the supervisors to the employees on the ground. Supervisors that are given a high level of power in terms of management have been observed to be very effective because they can relate to the employees on the ground but they still have a grasp on the aspect that management is challenging task to the top managers (May & Mumby, 2005)

Discussion: Importance of communication in organizations

If organizations want to be successful, they should ensure that there is free flow of information within the organization. Employees need to be constantly communicated to by their managers so that emphasis can be made on the goals and objectives of the organization that should be met that also align with the vision andmission of the organization. Through such communication, employees feel motivated because the tasks that they should achieve are made clearer (Conrad, 1994).

When employees’ goals and objectives are well defined, they feel motivated because they know what they are working to achieve. Through communication from managers, employees’ can find out how their evaluations for specific work turned out so that they can either maintain or improve their performance on defined tasks. Employees feel confident about their work when they have been appreciated.

This would help create a sense of loyalty because employees would know that they are not just working for the monetary rewards but even for recognition as having contributed to the success of the organization. A greater form of communication can also be used to foster accountability among employees in an organization. Organizational communication also serves as a source of information (Cheney, Christensen, Zorn & Ganesh, 2004).


Information is empowering to employees as they can make the right decisions using available information. Information can guide employees to make the right decisions that would result in a positive outcome for the employees and for the organization. Employees also feel empowered, valued and like they are part of the organization when they are given information that they can use to perform their work better.

Communication in the organization is an important tool that can be used to positively change the attitudes and behavior of employees in an organization. Employees are the internal clients of the organization and as so they should be the first target of the top management in ensuring that they view the organization in a positive light.

Most of the interaction of the organization with external organizations and individuals is done by the employees therefore their attitude towards the organization should be invested in through communication which can be in form of newsletters, strategic meetings organized by the organization, journal, annual reports and magazines. Company e-mails sent through the internal network can also be used to update employees’ on the information that they need to maintain a positive attitude towards the organization. Communication in organizations helps in the interaction of employees’ which fosters team work.

When employees interact through communication, they learn to appreciate and value each other’s differences. When employees understand each other, they are more likely to work better and support each other so as to achieve the goals of the organization. Communication in organizations is also a form of ensuring that laid down rules, regulations and procedures are followed (Kouze and Posner, 2007).

There is a hierarchy of authority in all organizations and all employees should be aware of the hierarchy so that they can follow it in case they want communication to take place. If rules in the organization are not complied with, there are bound to be consequences such as being reprimanded or being a formal warning that might be put on one’s record. However, most organizations would not require taking adverse measures because most employees are highly vetted to ensure that they are people of integrity and they can abide by set rules and work under minimal supervision. Besides, before most people are employed, they have usually gone through many systems and institutions so they know that there is a hierarchy of authority that must always be followed for an organization to function effectively (Conrad, 1994).

Leadership in Organizations

The role of good leadership in an organization cannot be overemphasized. It is the leaders of the organization that manage, plan, direct and control the resources of the organization and ensure that the organization runs like it should. Leaders’ in the organization have a high influence of the type and level of communication that takes place in an organization. A leader who practices open communication in the organization realizes effectiveness (Stoner & Freeman, 1992).

The leader is also the face of the organization with the outside and determines the information that is given to other organizations or received by the employees in the organization. Modern day trends of management would be very effective in the facilitation of communication in organizations. Management by walking around and transformational leadership would be successful in an organization where there is also frequent communication to employees by the management.

A transformational leader inspires employees to be the best that they can be so that they can achieve their personal goals and those of the organizations. Employees are encouraged to align their personal goals so that they are in line to those of the organizations. Transformational leaders use intelligence and analyze the personalities of the different individuals so that they can place them in different teams.

Through use of organizational communication, transformational leaders can also communicate the goals and objectives of the organization to their employees to ensure that they stay focused and their productivity remains high or improves for the benefit of the employees and of the organization. Transformational leaders usually have a great ability to create a vision and inspire those that they lead and they allow employees to be involved in the contribution of their opinions towards the ways that can be employed in the achievement of the goals and objectives of the organization (May & Mumby, 2005).

This kind of leadership would especially be very important if there was a form of change that was occurring in the organization. Such a leader would effectively create an environment where the employees could acknowledge and appreciate the change as something that was needed in order to help the organization grow or improve in terms of performance.

Conclusion & Recommendation for further research

Transformational leadership should be used in an organizational that has a high organizational communication. This would inspire innovation so as to inspire employees to come up with ideas that would improve productivity and foster creativity and faster decision making in an organization.

Due to high the high level of competition among organizations, innovation and time are an important essence that should be valued and maintain through effective communication and high levels of management and leadership for the employees. The paper has looked at the evolution of the organizational communicational discipline over time and its importance in organization (Stoner & Freeman, 1992).

Some of the most important reasons why organizational communication is paramount in the high performance of an organization is the motivation of employees. Communication provided to employees would enable them to gain a high sense of focus because they know that they would be evaluated and be responsible for achievement of tasks. Employees would also feel valued and appreciated from the information that they get from their managers concerning their performance in the organization. They can easily be able to gauge their performance and determine whether they should maintain or improve their performance.

Effective organizational communication would contribute towards the development of can- do attitudes for the employees since they feel that they are empowered and are an included as part of the organization. Organizational communication also has the goal of empowering employees to interact among them so that they can value and appreciate their differences. This would foster a great working environment and encourage positive creativity. Organizational communication is also a way of ensuring that employees’ follow laid down rules in accordance with the policies of the organization (Cheney, Christensen, Zorn & Ganesh, 2004).

Research should be conducted on the role of external organizational communication and barriers that exist to organizational communication, and their effects on productivity of the organization.


Cheney, G., Christensen, L.Y., Zorn, T.E. & Ganesh, S. (2004). Organizational Communication in an Age of Globalization. Illinois: Waveland press.

Conrad, C. (1994). Strategic Organizational Communication Toward the 21st Century. Texas: Harcourt Brace College Publishers.

Kouze, J & Posner, B. (2007). The Leadership Challenge. 4th edition. California: Jossey- Bass.

May, S. & Mumby, D.K. (2005). Engaging in Organizational Communication Theory & Research. California: Sage publications

Stoner, J., Freeman, R.E. (1992). Management. New Jersey: Prentice Hall.

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