Quiz 8: Communication in the Workplace


The situation involves upward communication-the transmission of messages from lower to higher levels in an organization. It is the most important channel for keeping management informed about problems within the organization. Considering the situation, the first item to decide is whether the company has an open-door policy-a more structured communication channels that allows employees to speak to top management about concerns, without first checking with their manager. If the company does indeed have this policy, then setting a time to speak privately with the CEO would be the best approach. Have comments and research prepared, as well as alternative directions that would be better for the company. Do not show up with complaints and no solutions, which is neither professional nor impressive.

Communication trends and advancing technology have both led to a more democratically run workplace. This is specially credited to the prevalence of Internet and social networking websites within a typical day in the office. Blogs and social networking sites allow employees to connect and share their comments and concerns to a wide audience. If a specific concern garners a majority of the employees' support, than that concern could result in changes in their favor. Advancing technology creates a faster communication channel, and allows reaching more people at the same time. Furthermore, it also allows for collaboration amongst teams that may not even be in the same geographic location.

One important communication channel can be classified as either formal or informal-management by walking around-involves managers intermingling freely with workers on the shop floor or in the office, as well as with customers. This channel can possibly undermine the authority of supervisors who are constantly within reach of employees or customers by overriding their rules and regulations. For instance, management can promise deals to customers that the supervisor previously would not grant, thus over ruling them and discrediting their authority.