Organizations use different communication methods for employee correspondence. Such methods include verbal communication, such as face-to-face conversations, and written communication, such as e-mail, faxes, memos, and letters. “Studies have shown that nonverbal messages tend to stay with the receiver three times longer than verbal messages.
When verbal and nonverbal messages are inconsistent, it is the nonverbal message that will usually come through the strongest” (Lewis & Graham, 1988, p. 27). Many factors can influence the effectiveness of communication. The sender of a message determines the content of the message being sent. The receiver decodes the message received. The message delivered contains information the sender conveys to individuals. Feedback lets the sender know the receiver understood the message.
The environment ranges from the setting to the organizational climate, which describes the relationships between superiors and subordinates and peers. If any of these factors disturb what the message is trying to portray then miscommunication occurs. In this paper, three business-related messages will be analyzed and one will be provided with valuable feedback. OSHA Memo A memo given to the employees of a dental practice by the organization’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) officer helped prepare them for a surprise inspection by reminding them of some key points.
According to Miller (2007), OSHA’s requirements are designed for the protection of the business and its customers so, “if compliance does not occur and authorities are notified, some penalty may be assessed” (para. 1). This dental office was attempting to become part of the Safety and Health Achievement Program (SHARP). The message in this memo informed employees and provided a list of critical details about the upcoming inspection.
The memo warned employees that they must know the answers to potential questions the inspector may have and if an answer was not known then they needed to know where to find it. The sender used basic technology to create the message, such as a computer to format the layout and a printer to print copies for the receivers. Analysis “Environment includes all linguistic, social, economic, cultural, and ethnical factors that have an influence upon the development and the evolution of an individual” (Hulea, 2009, p. 30).
The physical environmental factors in the office consisted of a green room, a comfortable temperature, and a well-lit room. The emotional environmental factors at the dental practice, such as peer and superior-subordinate relationships, needed improvement. The OSHA officer was not liked by other employees because she had an attitude problem. As a result, other individuals did not respond well to her. The officer had issues with authority and was not respectful toward her superiors. The external noise for this message included patients and employees talking, and the phone ringing.
The internal noise consisted of issues with the memo sender and a lack of interest. Feedback Senders rely on feedback and can encouraged receivers to respond by using one of these methods provided by Lewis and Graham (1988), “ask questions, listen with understanding, avoid blame, tell people you want feedback, use statements to encourage feedback, use silence to encourage feedback, and reward feedback” (p. 27). The receivers provided feedback by asking the sender questions and the sender quizzed them on potential inspection questions.
This helped to ensure the employee’s knowledge of OSHA was current. This message could have been more informative in regard to the upcoming inspection. The technology was appropriate for the environment because it allowed the sender to handout the memo to the employees in ample time before the inspection. Office Policy Memo During a staff meeting at a dental practice, the office manager handed the employees a memo concerning an addendum to an office policy.
As stated by Zalud (1997), organizations develop “office policies that address safety ssues, creating sound and effective hiring and termination practices, providing access to Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs), developing a threat management team, providing safety training for employees and supervisors and creating a work environment that communicates mutual trust and respect” (para. 7). The purpose of this memo was to notify the employees of the organizations about the add-on to the sick pay policy. The message not only made employees aware of the addendum but also explained the addition in detail. The technology used for this memo was the same used for the other memo.
A computer was used to create it and a printer was used to print copies for employees. Analysis The staff meeting took place in the office during non-operating hours. Given that information, the physical environment of the office was the same as before with the color being green, the office temperature being comfortable, and the office being well lit. The organizational climates varied from employee to employee. Some individuals had an excellent relationship with the office manager but others had a hard time adapting to her personality.
Even so, every employee respected the office manager because she understood what it took to run a successful practice. Most employees work well with together, even spending time outside of the office together. The external noises included the phone ringing and cars passing by on the highway. The internal noises included closed-mindedness and distractions by another issues. Feedback The sender provided examples to help the receivers understand the addition to the policy. Receivers asked questions and signed a consent form once they understood the addendum.
The message was informative and properly explained the addition in a way everyone understood. The technology used was appropriate for the environment because it allowed the sender to give the memo to the entire staff at one time. It also allowed everyone to have a copy of the addendum so employees could look at the policy while the office manager discussed it in detail. Assistant Renewal Message A registered dental assistant received an electronic mail, more commonly known as an e-mail, from the Texas State Board of Dental Examiners (TSBDE).
This e-mail was sent to notify the receiver that her dental assistant registration needed to be renewed. The message in the e-mail not only informed the receiver that her registration was about to expire, it also briefly explained the renewal process. Furthermore, the e-mail provided the individual with different renewal and payment methods. The form of technology used to relay this message was the most efficient form of communication because the TSBDE had to notify every individual in the state of Texas whose license or registration was about to expire.
Analysis The registered dental assistant received and read the e-mail at the office during business hours. The timing of the e-mail was not appropriate because it was chaotic at the office, which distracted the receiver. The external noise included the phones ringing, patients talking in the waiting room, employees talking to patients and each other, the radio playing, the door opening and closing, and cars driving by on the highway. Internal noise included the receiver being distracted by other issues and a lack of interest. Feedback
The only feedback necessary for the receiver was to renew her registration. The individual could contact TSBDE if any questions or concerns arise during the process. The message was informative and gave the individual explanatory directions on how to renew her dental assistant registration. The technology used was appropriate because it allows TSBDE to contact all the individuals whose licenses or registrations were about to expire. Response to OSHA Memo In a response to the memo from the office OSHA officer, one employee thought several issues needed to be addressed.
This employee responded to the officer in an e-mail, in which she made several recommendations that would help prepare the office for the surprise inspection. The individual advised the OSHA officer to hold a staff meeting to review the items on the list from the memo. During this time, staff could review proper sterilizing techniques and locate required materials. In her response, the employee also told the officer that this meeting would be an excellent opportunity to work on the lab.
The employee then advised the officer to hold an OSHA meeting nnually because these notions would help refresh everyone’s knowledge on OSHA regulations and help to ensure a successful inspection. They will also help to keep the practice in compliance with OSHA guidelines. Response Feedback Analysis The response to the OSHA memo let the officer know the employee read and understood the memo regarding the surprise inspection. The employee could offer some valuable suggestions as well as ask for help. After the employee sent the response to the officer, the employee then became the sender and the officer became the receiver, starting the feedback process over again.
The technology used allowed the employee to respond faster, which is important because the material is time sensitive. An e-mail was more private than a memo, so the officer may react better to the employee’s response. The employee’s e-mail offered excellent advice from which the practice can benefit. Conclusion Every organization communicates differently. Some find it easier to have face-to-face conversation but many use writing methods, such as e-mail, memos, and letters. Regardless of the method used, how efficiently an organization communicates can affect its success.
The sender needs to convey their message clearly, so the receiver understands what the sender is saying. The sender also needs to consider other factors, such as the environment, before starting the communication process. The receiver needs to provide some type of feedback so the sender knows the receiver received and understood the message. These effective communication techniques help prevent miscommunication. Corresponding through writing can be an effective form of communication in any organization.
- Hulea, L. (2009). The influence of certain factors upon business communication. Annals of the University of Petrosani Economics, 9(2), 29-32. Retrieved July 4, 2010, from Business Source Complete database.
- Lewis, T. D. , & Graham, G. H. (1988). Six ways to improve your communication skills. Internal Auditor , 45(1), 24+. Retrieved from http://find. galegroup. com. ezproxy. apollolibrary. com /gps/infomark. do? &contentSet=IAC-Documents&type=retrieve&tabID= T002&prodId =IPS&docId=A6239462&source=gale&srcprod=ITOF&userGroupName=uphoenix&version=1. 0
- Miller, C. H. (2007). Standard procedure: complying with OSHA: are you prepared for an OSHA inspection? The complaint and compliance process is outlined here. Dental Products Reports, 82+. Retrieved from http://find. galegroup. com. ezproxy. apollolibrary. com/gps/ infomark. do? &contentSet=IACDocuments&type=retrieve&tabID=T003&prodId=IPS&docId= A162577029&source=gale&srcprod=ITOF&userGroupName=uphoenix&version =1. 0
- Zalud, Bill. (1997). Keeping the workplace safe: A Challenge for security. Security, 34(3), 49-50. Retrieved July 4, 2010, from ABI/INFORM Research. (Document ID: 11305648).