December 4, 2011

Communication - Review Notes

Part 1 of the article

Communication: Importance and Definition

Faciliatating Upward Communication

Failure of Upward Communication Process

Classical organization structure and theory formally stated the need for information flow downward and upward. But upward communication process has been stifled as facilitating mechanisms were not put in place in many organizations.

According to surveys conducted by InTouch Management Communications Systems, 90 percent of employees believe that they have good ideas for improving the effectiveness of their firms, but only 50 percent of them ever share these ideas with the company.

Facilitating Mechanisms for Upward Communication

1. The open door policy

2. Use of email

3. Attitude questionnaires and exit interviews

4. Participative techniques

5. Empowerment strategy

6. Grievance procedure

7. Ombudsperson

Active Listening Skills

To facilitate upward communication, executives have to improve their active listening skills. Some of the guidelines to improve listening are:

1. Maintain attention. Focus on the speaker.

2. Use restatements to confirm to the speaker that you are with him.

3. Show empathy.

4. Use probing questions to elicit more information on issues of interest.

5. Encourage more suggestions by noting down the suggestions given

6. Speak in between appropriately and allow the conversation to continue.


Fred Luthans, Organizational Behavior, McGraw-Hill, New York, 9th Edition.

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