Business Communication – Importance, Definition, Nature, Principles

Importance of Communication in Business

In olden days, almost all business concerns were one man shows; The business operations were very few and confined to a limited area. The businessman of those days knew his customers personally and dealt with them face to face. Therefore, there was no need for communication or exchange of ideas.

Business Communication

Business Communication – Importance, Definition, Nature, Principles

But with the advent of Industrial revolution, trade and commerce became more complex. The growth of large scale undertakings and the expansion of business operations created many peculiar problems. Consequently, businessmen were unable to restrict their operations to a limited area. They have to maintain constant touch with other people.

The modern businessman cannot run his show in isolation with others. He has to exchange ideas, transmit opinions to achieve success in his business, to bring about mutual understanding and confidence and to establish good human relations with others – both external and internal. Even for small business concerns now-a-days communication may be less important but not unimportant.

The authorities have also recognized communication as an indispensable tool in the process of management. Effective communication is not only important and inevitable with the outside world but also within an organization. Without proper communication, no group activity is possible and no organization can attain its goals or objectives.

Definition of Communication

Certain beautiful definitions of communication are enumerated below:

Definition of Theo Haimann: Theo Haimann simply stated that

by communication we mean the process of passing information and understanding from one person to another

Definition of Fred G. Meyer: According to Fred G. Meyer,

communication is the intercourse by words, letters or messages, intercourse of thoughts or opinions. It is the act of making one’s ideas and opinions known to others.

Definition of Keith and Gubellini: Keith and Gubellini have defined communication as

in its every day meaning, communication refers to the transmitting of information in the form of words, or signals or signs from a source to a receiver.

From the above definitions, we can conclude that communication mean and include not only sending or receiving information but also the proper understanding of the information so sent or received and taking necessary action on it.

Nature of Communication

Following are the essential features of communication:

1. Communication can take place only when there are atleast two persons namely, receiver and sender. Sender must have the ability to convey the message in clear terms. The receiver must understand it in the same sense in which the sender proposes to convey.

2. A communication must convey some message If there is no message there. is no communication at all.

3. Communication means not only oral or written messages but also every thing done to convey meanings from one person to another. Sometimes, message is conveyed by waving the hands, shaking the hands, moving the lips, twisting the face, etc.

4. There are two basic channels of communication namely Formal Communication, and Informal Communication.

  1. Formal channels are designed as part of organizational structure of authority and activity relationships. It consist of vertical, horizontal and diagonal information flows.
  2. Informal channels, on the other hand, are channels which naturally and normally emerge in organizations over a period as part of informal group dynamics.

5. Communication travels downward from a superior to his subordinates and upward from subordinate to a superior. It also travels from. one person to another person operating at the same level of authority.

6. Communication is used by all levels of management and in all operational areas.

7. Communication must be made continuously because only through communication, messages are exchanged between the people in the organization.

Principles of Communication

For a communication to be effective must be based on certain important principles. H.Koontz says that the following principles are useful guides for establishing a good communication.

1. Clarity

A communication is said to have clarity when it is expressed and transmitted to the receiver in an understandable manner. Unless the message is well understood by the subordinates, efficiency in action shall not become a reality.

2. Integrity

Managerial communications are only means but not ends. The purpose of communication is to develop understanding and to bring co-ordination to attain the cherished goals of the firm.

3. Uses of Informal Organization

Managers must make use of the informal organization to supplement the communication channels of formal organization.