Effective Business Communication
Opening statement: This is a reflective essay, which sheds light on the knowledge gained from the class lectures across the span of ten weeks.
Background information: Communication is defined as the process of receiving, giving and exchanging information, thoughts and ideas so that the message is passed on and understood by the concerned parties (Ioc.edu.my, 2019). Effective communication is considered a building block of the organizational success as it builds transparency of processes and methods. Proper channels of communication ensure that the leaders and managers are able to guide the subordinates and ensure efficient attainment of goal by passing on the orders and directions effectively from the senior management. Effective communication helps in eliminating all the rumours and curbing down the grapevine leading to enhancement of organizational processes.
Preview of the structure of the essay: The essay would incorporate the ten concepts that I found vital in the purview of communication. It would also contain a brief literature review on one of the most significant concepts along with application of two communication concepts in my professional life.
Thesis statement: Gaining information regarding communication concepts and theories, facilitated growth in both personal and professional context.
Transition to section one: The sections below would include discussion on the ten communication concepts and application of a few in my professional and personal life.
Ethics in Communication
Ethics in communication refers to the use of coherent and logically constructed message in order to reduce the equivocacy of messages (Nolan & Mikami, 2013). Therefore, post the lecture, I understood that the message to be conveyed should be honest and democratic in nature so that the receiver can comprehend the essence of the message. Following the code of ethics while encoding the message would help me in choosing the right words while communicating the desired message to the senior management.
Kinesics is a form of non-verbal communication wherein the message is conveyed through body movement (Cienki et al, 2013). The body posture of a person along with the hand gestures and position of the feet convey the seriousness of the person conveying his/her thoughts or ideas. Therefore, from the lecture I learned that not only my words but also my body posture conveys my idea. Hence, in future in my professional life, I would have to be careful regarding my body language while communicating with my seniors.
Employment Letters and Resumes
Employment letters and resumes are important concepts of business communication as it helps in getting jobs and flourishing in it. Every individual has to prepare a resume, which contains their capabilities, educational background and work experience so that they can get a job. Moreover, in a job, an employee has to draft several employment letters that are to be presented in front of clients and seniors (Adler & Elmhorst, 2012). After attending the class, I realized that written communication is an important aspect of professional life, as I would be expected to make reports, presentations and curate emails to communicate with people. Therefore, knowledge about business and employment writing would make me proficient in dealing with clients, seniors and colleagues.
Analysing the references is important as it proves that the information being presented is reliable and valid. In an organization, I would have to gather relevant information from the industry in order to develop plans.
Therefore, knowledge about evaluating sources and ensuring their reliability would help me to gather relevant data for the new plans to be made by the company. Referencing the information presented by me would validate my reports and data gathered.
Self-reflective essay is the process wherein an individual judges one’s own performance to ascertain the effectiveness of it and documents in an essay format. In a professional set up, personnel are expected to review their own performance over set standards so that they can realize the areas where they are lacking. Hence, the lecture shed light on the methods based on which I would be able to judge my performance and improve it to perform better.
Overcoming and Understanding Communication Apprehension
Communication apprehension is a situation when a person feels conscious, nervous, and a sense of fear while communicating to an individual or a large group of people (Mak, Brown & Wadey, 2014). In a professional context, I would be expected to speak in front of people and communicate with my colleagues and senior and hence, I would have to ensure that I do not have communication apprehension. The lecture helped me to understand methods of overcoming the apprehension in me – preparing the speech in advance, development of contingency plan and think good about the audience, which would further help me in dealing with giving presentation to the clients and colleague at my workplace.
Intercultural communication is defined as the method of communication with people belonging to different culture and background (Steinfatt & Millette, 2014). Post attending the lecture, I learnt that semantic and cultural diversity could be a hindrance in effective communication, which can pose as a threat in my professional career. Hence, gaining information on this was vital, as working in MNC would require possessing knowledge about various cultures.
Internal and External Communication
Internal organizational communication refers to the exchange of information between leaders, managers, employees and other personnel (Men, 2014). On the other hand, external organizational communication refers to exchange of information among the business executives and external parties like clients, customers, government officials and suppliers. While working in an organization, I need to know about the various forms of internal and external communication – meetings, written forms, telephone and face-toface. Hence, knowledge regarding the same would help me in forming a good rapport with my colleagues, customers and suppliers.
Differences between teams and groups
Groups are defined as a collection of people working together for completing a specific task. On the other hand, teams are defined as a group of people co-ordinating with each other and sharing a common team goal and purpose. The lecture helped me to clarify my notions about groups and teams and the effectiveness of both. I learnt, that in my professional life, I would be expected to be a team player as I would be sharing common team goals with other employees of the company.
Assertive Communication is when an individual takes a stand for himself or herself so that others cannot take advantage of it. The lecture also shed light on certain characteristics of assertive communication – holding on to beliefs, frankly expressing of feelings and standing up for one’s rights. Through the lecture, I learnt that I would have to be assertive in my communication skills at my workplace so that I am able to exercise all my basic rights and get my thoughts heard by my colleagues and seniors.
Topic chosen: Intercultural Communication
In this section of the essay, I have selected intercultural communication and conducted a literature review. The purpose of selecting this topic, as I believe this is the most important concept, which would help me in my future career. As per Brage.bibsys.no (2019), intercultural communication refers to a communication phenomenon wherein, individuals belonging to diverse cultural backgrounds come in direct or indirect contact with each other. In general, notion, communication is possible between people sharing similar cultural and linguistic traits. However, with the world economy growing, the companies have started venturing into new territories. The concept of globalization has opened new doors for the companies as they have started expanding into international and domestic locations in view of higher profits and customer base (Is.muni.cz, 2019). Hence, such new business propositions include dealing with people belonging to different cultural backgrounds, mindsets, thoughts and language preferences.
According to Siteresources.worldbank.org (2019), culture has significant role to play in influencing the communication style of the people. For instance, in Australia, people prefer direct form of communication in professional context and hence, one’s position in the organization cannot be distinguishable based on the style of speaking or appearance (Australian Culture – Communication, 2019). Moreover, the Australians are known for frequently using slangs and humour while communication with each other as they feel that it would make the other person comfortable. On the other hand, the Chinese prefer indirect style of communication and pay a lot of respect to the position or status of the person. The Chinese try to maintain harmony throughout the conversation and pay attention to the body language of the person in order to judge the seriousness of the matter (Chinese Culture – Communication, 2019). Hence, such differences in the communication style might lead to conflicts within the people in an organizational people. In a company, people are expected to co-ordinate and work with each other and difference in style of communication might cause mis-communication and mis-understanding leading to lack of efficiency.
Another aspect of intercultural communication is difference in the age of the people working in a professional set up. It has been observed that aged people tend to be a little more rigid as compared to the fresher or young talent. This age gap in the workforce might lead to conflict within the employees. Religion, educational and family background, etiquettes and business culture also comprise of intercultural communication. Hence, in order to overcome these issues within an organization, the management has to embrace the concept of intercultural communication. The senior management needs to ensure that the employees are comfortable working with each other so that conflicts at workplace can be avoided. For this, certain ethics need to be followed within the company. For instance, the employees need to be trained about various cultures and its basic etiquettes so that the employees can work cohesively. Proper training would ensure that employees have significant knowledge about the various cultures and business environment so that they can work for the betterment and growth of the company (Wiggins, 2012). Moreover, importance needs to be laid on the non-verbal aspects of communication like gestures, eye contact, and body language and posture as it also communicates the message and overcomes the language barrier.
Para 1: Kinesics
In the near future, I aspire to be a successful professional with a stable job in one of the leading multinationals. In the next five year’s time, I see myself as a successful marketing manager in a large-scale organization dealing in the retail sector. As per my understanding, I think that the retail industry is fast growing and offers galore opportunities of growth due to which I wish to work in this sector. While working in a large-scale company, I would meet people belonging to various walks of life and possessing different mindsets and thought process from mine. However, keeping all this aside, I would have to converse with them to ensure that the goals are met and personal and professional objectives are achieved. As I want to be employed at Multinational Corporation, I would interact with people of diverse culture and language preference. Hence, to ensure that I am able to communicate effectively with people, I have to pay equal attention to both verbal and non-verbal communication.
The class lectures, enlightened me about the ways in which our gestures and body language help us in conveying the message. For instance, if I were dealing with Australian clients I would need to maintain eye contact, whereas, for Chinese clients maintaining eye contact would not be a good idea. Similarly, while talking to colleagues I can have a relaxed body posture but while communicating with seniors, I have to more careful with my body language and gestures.
Para 2: Understanding and Overcoming Communication Apprehension
Having communication apprehension would be a hindrance for me in my professional career and future success, as being a marketing manager; I would be expected to talk to several customers, subordinates and seniors. Therefore, while interacting with people, I need to exhibit confidence so that I can create situations favourable for the company. However, feeling nervous or anxious can break the deal for me and hamper my career. Hence, I need to ensure that I take appropriate steps to overcome the anxiety issues. I would practice talking in front of large audience in every instance I get, as it would help me in overcoming the anxiety of public speaking. I would also think of the audience to be supportive and understanding, so that I can feel comfortable (Blume, Baldwin & Ryan, 2013). Moreover, I would ensure that my speech is prepared and practice well in advance. This practice would ensure that good communication skill complement by attitude at work and bestow success upon me in my position of a marketing manager.
Synopsis of the areas: The essay contains detailed review of the most important communication concepts that I inculcated after attending the weekly lectures at the university. I would value the concepts learnt, in future as well since, it would help me to become a successful professional. A brief literature review has also been presented on intercultural communication as it has gained prominence post the popularization of open economy and globalization. Lastly, the application of communication anxiety and kinesics has been explained in context of future life.
Restatement of the thesis statement: The knowledge attained through the weekly lectures would help me to achieve my dream of becoming a successful professional working in a large multinational organization.
Capstone statement: While concluding the essay, I would like to reinstate that the weekly concepts would help in achieving my aspiration and being successful in future.
Adler, P. R. B., & Elmhorst, J. M. (2012). Communicating at Work: Principles and Practices for Business and the. Mcgraw Hill Higher Educat.
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Blume, B. D., Baldwin, T. T., & Ryan, K. C. (2013). Communication apprehension: A barrier to students' leadership, adaptability, and multicultural appreciation. Academy of Management Learning & Education, 12(2), 158-172.
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Communication (pp. 310-319). C. Müller (Ed.). de Gruyter.
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Cross-Cultural Psychology, 45(3), 491-504.
Men, L. R. (2014). Strategic internal communication: Transformational leadership, communication channels, and employee satisfaction. Management Communication Quarterly, 28(2), 264-284.
Nolan, D., & Mikami, A. (2013). ‘The things that we have to do’: Ethics and instrumentality in humanitarian
communication. Global Media and Communication, 9(1), 53-70.
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Steinfatt, T. M., & Millette, D. M. (2014). Intercultural communication. In An integrated approach to communication theory and research (pp. 313-336). Routledge.
Wiggins, B. E. (2012). Toward a model for intercultural communication in simulations. Simulation & Gaming, 43(4), 550-572.
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