The Significance of Communication

Organizations are totally reliant on communication, which is defined as the exchange of ideas, messages, or information by speech, signals, or writing. Without communication, organizations would not function. If communication is diminished or hampered, the entire organization suffers. When communication is thorough, accurate, and timely, the organization tends to be vibrant and effective.

Communication is central to the entire management process for four primary reasons:

  • Communication is a linking process of management. Communication is the way managers conduct the managerial functions of planning, organizing, staffing, directing, and controlling. Communication is the heart of all organizations
  • Communication is the primary means by which people obtain and exchange information. Decisions are often dependent upon the quality and quantity of the information received. If the information on which a decision is based is poor or incomplete, the decision will often be incorrect.
  • The most time‐consuming activity a manager engages in is communication. Managers spend between 70 to 90 percent of their time communicating with employees and other internal and external customers.
  • Information and communication represent power in organizations. An employee cannot do anything constructive in a work unit unless he or she knows what is to be done, when the task is to be accomplished, and who else is involved. The staff members who have this information become centers of power.

The ability to communicate well, both orally and in writing, is a critical managerial skill and a foundation of effective leadership. Through communication, people exchange and share information with one another and influence one another's attitudes, behaviors, and understandings. Communication allows managers to establish and maintain interpersonal relationships, listen to others, and otherwise gain the information needed to create an inspirational workplace. No manager can handle conflict, negotiate successfully, and succeed at leadership without being a good communicator.