Communication and Decision-Making in Organisation

Introduction

Leaders, committees, and/or large groups of people within organisations make decisions. The deployment of any of these categories of people depends on the organisational culture, which defines the organisation’s behaviour (Ivanko 2013). However, each category works well based on the type and nature of decision-making context. While arriving at a specific decision, parties that participate in the decision-making process must clearly understand the role of communication in enhancing the implementation of any resolution. Indeed, in situations where communication is made systematic and precise, choices become more helpful and efficient. This observation suggests that communication constitutes an important aspect of decision-making processes within an organisation. As a result, this paper confirms that communication and decision-making are two critical aspects of organisational behaviour.

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Organisational Conduct, Decision-making, and Communication

Organisational conduct refers to the study of various persons who work within an organisation with reference to their manners within the paradigms of the organisational operations. Organisational behaviour is replicated in the organisational culture (Robbins & Judge 2012). Organisational culture refers to the values and norms that define the personality of a particular organisation (Kotter 2012). Creating the culture of effective communication during decision-making processes, especially where the set decisions are aimed at creating organisational change encompasses one of the organisational actions that are aimed at ensuring that organisations become more effective in their operations.

Communication refers to the intended or unintended exchange of information. The information can be written, verbal, or expressed in a manner that parties, which are involved in decision-making operate through facial expression and other bodily gestures. Listening also encompasses one of the elements of communication. Inadequate or ineffective communication may hinder decision-making in the extent that parties may have the wrong perceptions of issues that lead or underline the necessity of making a certain decision that can lead to organisational change.

Decision-making implies the exchange of information among leaders, individuals in a committee, or large groups of people who are tasked with setting the strategic directions for organisations in a bid to arrive at a conclusion that serves the best interest of all stakeholders. During decision-making process, communication links the plans developed by decision makers to enhance the success of an organisation and the actual implementation process of the plans (Jacobides 2007). Developing strategies that can succeed through decision-making processes requires ardent communication at all hierarchical structures of business administration. This prerequisite is vital since the implementation of new business strategies often involves change (Williams & Seaman 2001).

Importance of Communication and Decision-making in Organisations

Poor communication or ineffective communication leads to poor decision-making that attracts resistance to change, especially where persons who work in an organisation consider the implemented change a threat to their jobs and personal excellence. For instance, personnel at the headquarters of an organisation may be fighting for standardisation of products that are produced by an organisation to ease the supply chain and logistics. However, personnel at departmental levels may be opposed to such an endeavour (Ziegfeld & Halliburton 2009). Inadequate communication at the intra-organisational levels may result in different perceptions of brands that can excel in the market. This situation minimises the opportunities for channelling organisational energy to profitable brands. Emphasis on areas that need critical consideration in pushing for acceptance of brands in the market requires decision makers to communicate effectively on the organisation’s positioning and sales targets. Considering this implication of poor communication, it is important to declare communication an important aspect of organisational norms, values, or organisational behaviour.

Although effective decision-making is crucial for the success of an organisation, significant success is attained when all workers have awareness in all decision-making hierarchical structures. This plan helps them to support any decision effectively and/or do what is within their capacity to ensure that an organisation succeeds in the direction set by the decision makers. In this sense, the goal of an effective communication programme within an organisation is to foster change of employee behaviours. The desired change in an organisation takes different forms. It may involve a change of attitude or alteration of work processes in the effort to support organisation’s competitive advantage (Williams & Seaman 2001). Without communication of change, high possibilities exist that people who are involved in decision-making or parties on whom the decision has an impact may fail to embrace new ways of doing work in any organisation.

Contributors of Effective Communication and Decision-making in Organisations

Communicating effectively in an organisation requires decision makers to possess certain traits such as emotional intelligence. Decision makers or leaders are vision careers. As the head of organisations, decision makers should have the ability to manage their emotions so that they do not get out of control, irrespective of the challenges they go through while attempting to enhance compliance to visions (Barrett 2007). Effective decision makers trust people who work in an organisation. Besides, they speak kindly and eloquently, pay attention to the concerns of the people they work with as a team, and are at ease to address. They also have the ability to make well-informed decisions. All these aspects help in building an effective climate for communication within an organisation.

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Effective decision-making requires leaders to have the capacity to manage their emotions well. For this purpose, integration of the perspectives of emotional intelligence in decision-making becomes crucial. Communicating effectively requires leaders to possess qualities such as the ability to listen effectively to others, have the ability and willingness to speak in an honest and kind manner, be approachable, and/or have the capacity to make informed decisions. The aspects of effective communication constitute the traits of emotionally intelligent decision makers.

The concept of EI engulfs five crucial building blocks. The first block is self-awareness. Self-awareness implies that decision makers have the capacity to understand their feelings and/or how such feelings can possibly influence the people they lead (McFarlin, Sweeney & Cotton 2003). This claim infers that decision makers clearly understand their strengths and weakness that may affect their productivity. The second block is self-regulation, which entails remaining in control of every situation that faces a decision maker. In other words, decision makers who are able to self-regulate themselves possess a minimal probability of attacking various members of work teams. Besides, they do not make rushed emotionally instigated decisions and/or compromise the values of the work team members. The other three blocks include motivation, social skills, and empathy. Empathy entails putting one into the situation of another person. In the context of decision-making, the situation is that of the subordinates. In relation to social skills, effective decision makers who possess high levels of emotional intelligence have magnificent communication skills.

Effective communication or decision-making requires ample understanding of the audience for every communication situation in terms of what motivates them to behave in certain ways (Invernizzi & Romenti n.d). This state of affairs calls for awareness of the people on whom the decision has an impact. The reception of the leader by audience helps in shaping the perception and decision-making in terms of whether to pay attention to the leader while talking or not (Barrett 2007). This claim suggests that ethos and/or the initial presentation of the decision maker may create barriers to the reception of the desired message. In fact, when the audience does not listen to the decision makers when they speak, communication does not take place. Leaders who intend to build their success through effective communication need to master the art of persuasion. This goal can be accomplished through the creation of positive ethos and the development of clear understanding of the nature of people who are influenced by the decisions in terms of what propels them to pay attention to details.

From a superficial perspective, communication is a simple task for emotionally intelligent decision makers. In some communication situations, sending memos and emails may serve the purpose of delivering the intended massage. However, in complex communication situations such as addressing issues of strikes within an organisation, these simplistic methodologies of communication may fail to yield success. Such a situation requires decision makers to evaluate the context and implications of their chosen communication to address employee conflicts within an organisation in an effective manner. This consideration highlights the significance of understanding the components or facets of an effective communication process.

In the effort to ensure that communication makes positive impacts, it is vital to ensure its careful planning, management, and taking measures to enhance consistency and clarity. Thus, making decisions and ensuring effective communication require decision makers to avoid concentrating on just delivering messages while neglecting the importance of planning and management of communication processes. Decision makers need to avoid making an error of equating the volume and the speed advantages that are offered by internet to effective organisational communication.

Contributors of Ineffective Communication and Ineffective Decision-making in Organisations

Effective decision-making entails the communication of strategies of success through the translation of all essential business objectives and goals into terms that employees can easily understand. In response to such communication, employees become engaged and aligned to work collectively towards driving organisational success. For example, many communication programmes fail to address precisely what employees, who are also the strategic implementers, need to know and do to enhance performance and success of an organisation (Malenko 2014). Effective communication and decision making is incredibly hampered by conflicts among decision makers and/or the existence of a discriminatory organisational culture.

Failure to plan communication in terms of laying out precise objectives, understanding the audience, and seeking feedback in the manner in which the information is received leads to poor designing of communication. In the encoding process, considering the cultural context is incredibly paramount. Misunderstanding and miscommunication of the desired message arise from language and cultural barriers (Malenko 2014). Steps such as consulting and encoding information so that diverse number of people can understand it are important in contexts where cross-cultural communication is required.

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Failure to understand the right communication media and context impairs effective communication. Effective communication requires optimal utilisation of communication opportunity whilst maintaining efficiency in terms of delivery of the intended message. For example, for simple directions, emails are the most appropriate. However, emails turn out ineffective where the decision makers intend to delegate tasks. Emails and memos are also not appropriate where the communication raises emotional charges in an organisation (Ziegfeld & Halliburton 2009). Under such circumstances, the best channel in an organisational setting is face-to-face or telephone communication. These methods give decision makers an opportunity to evaluate and judge the impact of any words on the communication process.

Conflicts are major contributors of ineffective decision-making and ineffective communication. They result from a clash of personalities or interference with work or lines of duty for other people (Dee 2014). Disagreements are ongoing situations that potentially arise from repeated disputes. By ensuring cute conflict resolution, organisational leaders and managers develop the capacity to create effective and accommodative work environment for all people to work effectively within their talent and knowledge potential. This case requires the embracement of effective communication (Rahim 2002). Communication strategies are crucial in organisations, particularly in the information age.

Performance of an organisation depends on the effectiveness of its communication strategies. For instance, any reduction of workplace conflicts can incredibly increase employee productivity. Higher productivity implies higher sales volumes, which constitute a key indicator of highly performing organisations. Myatt (2012) asserts that ineffective communication is directly correlated with escalated work conflicts since many conflicts within an organisation are caused by inadequate information, poor communication, or cases of misinformation. This observation suggests that precision, accurateness, and timing of communication are crucial in mitigating organisational conflict as a premise for infective decision-making.

Conclusion

Decision-making forms the basic platform for organisational success. For effective decision-making to occur, the involved parties must exchange information on the alternative ways of achieving a specific objective. The paper has suggested that this process requires sufficient communication and possession of effective communication traits among decision makers within an organisation. For long-term success, effective decision-making or communication needs to constitute an excellent organisational behaviour.

References

Barrett, D 2007, Leadership Communication: A Communication Approach for Senior Level Managers, Web.

Dee, K 2014, ‘Resolving Conflict in the Workplace’, Alaska Business Monthly, Web.

Invernizzi, E & Romenti, S n.d, Strategic Communication and Decision-Making Processes Toward the Communication Oriented Organisation, IULM University, Milan, Italy.

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Ivanko, S 2013, Organisational Behaviour, University Of Ljubljana, Slovenia

Jacobides, M 2007, ‘The inherent limits of organisational structure and the unfulfilled role of hierarchy: Lessons from a near-war’, Organisation Science, vol.18 no. 3, pp. 455-47.

Kotter, J 2012, The Key To Changing Organisational Culture, Web.

Malenko, N 2014, ‘Communication and Decision Making In Corporate Boards’, Review of Financial Studies, vol. 27 no. 5, pp. 1486-1532.

McFarlin, B, Sweeney, D & Cotton, L 2003, ‘Attitudes toward employee participation in decision-making: A comparison of European and American managers in a U.S. multinational’, Human Resource Management Journal, vol.31 no.4, pp 363−383.

Myatt, M 2012, 5 Keys of Dealing with Workplace Conflict, Forbes, Web.

Rahim, A 2002, ‘Towards a Theory of Managing Organisational Conflict’, The International Journal of Conflict Management, vol.13 no. 3, pp. 206-235.

Robbins, S & Judge, T 2012, Organisational Behaviour, Pearson, London.

Williams, J & Seaman, E 2001, ‘Predicting change in management accounting systems: National culture and industry effects’, Accounting, Organisations and Society, vol. 26 no. 5, pp. 443−460.

Ziegfeld, A & Halliburton, C 2009, ‘How do major European companies communicate their corporate identity across countries?–An empirical investigation of corporate internet communications’, Journal of Marketing of Marketing Management, vol. 25 no. 9, pp. 909-925.

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