Page 2: The communication process
The process of communication involves a sender transmitting information in an appropriate form to ensure the message is understood by the receiver. The sender must also consider potential ‘noise’ or barriers to the communication being received. Effective communication depends on:
- clearly defining the objective of the message
- taking account of the needs of the receiver
- selecting the best medium and method for communication
- being aware of how ‘noise’ can distort the message
- ensuring opportunity for feedback is given to clarify understanding of the message.
Enterprise’s communications vary depending on the message and the target audience. For example, when creating awareness of the career opportunities available at Enterprise it must consider:
- the message it wants to send (Enterprise is a great place to work)
- the intended receivers (school leavers, graduates, people looking for a new opportunity)
- the best channels to use (Enterprise’s Come Alive recruitment website, careers fair)
- methods to reduce potential barriers to communication (clear instructions, multi-channel approach)
- evaluating the effectiveness of communications (number and quality of applicants).
Communication channels can be formal or informal. Formal communication channels are those approved by employers. These include a letter sent to an employee from the HR department or copy on an organisation’s website. Informal communication happens through non-approved channels. An example is when two employees have a discussion whilst sat at their desks. These tend to lack a specific order, structure or traceability. Effective communication requires both formal and informal communication channels. Service organisations like Enterprise recognise the importance of informal communication channels. Often the company will deliver formal communications to encourage and prompt informal discussions. This helps build strong relationships between employees and customers to better understand customers’ needs.
Verbal and non-verbal communication
Communication can be split into two main forms: verbal and non-verbal communication. Verbal communication involves conveying information using words. It can be either written or oral. Both types of communication can be formal or informal. These include:
Non-verbal communication involves transferring information through signals such as facial expressions, body-language and tone of voice. It also includes how we dress and position ourselves within groups.
The key messages that Enterprise seeks to communicate relate to the values and culture of the organisation. Values are the things that a company is passionate about. An organisation’s culture is ‘the way we do things around here’. For Enterprise these include high levels of customer service, looking after its employees and behaving ethically and responsibly. Enterprise’s culture is set out clearly in its ‘cultural compass’.