Organizational communication, according to Goldhaber, is the process of creating and exchanging messages within a network of interdependent relationships in order to cope with environmental uncertainty. Even without this definition, the importance of communication in an organization is not unknown to many. Despite having such great importance, people use communication in their daily lives so much that it is often taken for granted. As a result, organizational communication faces different challenges in different aspects.
For one, despite all the help from new communication technologies, I think that diversity still poses as a challenge for communication.
An example of which is diversity in languages used. In communicating with others, we use a language of our choice, whether it is one’s mother language or it is a second language one learns when he/she grows up, in order to get our messages across. Different languages used in a single workplace usually result in misunderstandings, a sign of ineffective communication.
For example is the Indonesian Embassy (discussed by Ms.
Artates and her group). The employees consist of both Filipinos and Indonesians whose language is very different from each other. If they do not understand what each other are saying, they cannot get their messages across. Another kind of diversity that may pose as a problem for communication is cultural diversity. In a workplace where employees are of different nationalities, culture may become somewhat of a problem.
There maybe things that is alright for an employee of a specific nationality but may come off as offensive to another. This, again, may become as a source of misunderstanding. Second, the lack of transparency between the management and its employees, in my opinion, is another challenge. There are times when information is withheld to the employees. This secrecy may breed to distrust and misunderstanding. I think that if employees have that kind of climate, they may become wary, affecting the quality of their work.
Though I fully understand that there are information that are strictly confidential and cannot be disseminated to lower ranking employees, I still think that it will help the organization better if the employees are aware of the happenings in the organization. If the employees are trusted with such important information, I think that they will gain confidence in themselves and trust in their company and have the feeling of camaraderie, positively affecting the workplace climate and, in turn, resulting to better productivity. They say that we are now living in the cyber age.
In the past decade, a lot of innovations and development in technologies have happened. As a result, communication has become faster and more efficient. For me though, this efficiency of communication with the help of new communication technologies does not always equate to effectiveness. In my opinion, the third and greatest challenge of organizational communication is the changes in technology. These innovations have become too fast to cope up with. Adjustments in new technologies are just attained but then, these technologies are innovated yet again.
The purpose is static but the process is dynamic. Technologies can be easily outdated and if one refuses to cope with these changes, it can become the downfall of the organization. Moreover, these developments in technology allow people to discuss things without meeting each other personally. Though that may be seen as an advantage considering the time and money spent, I think that the human factor is disregarded. For me, the quality of decisions produced is better if one were to personally meet his/her group mates.
This is because we are not robots. We are humans, social beings, who are more likely to work better in a place where you can actually interact with one another. In conclusion, the three greatest challenges faced by organizational communication in the Philippines, in my opinion, are diversity, lack of transparency and technological changes. I think that communication inside an organization will be better and more effective if we respect each other and always remember that we are humans who are interdependent of one another.
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