Effective communication is very important for every organization. Many multinational companies face many issues regarding organizational communication. This essay is about effective business communication based on an international agricultural products supplier company, Australian Grain Link Pty Ltd. The head office of the company is in Australia. This company has recruited ten new employees from both the home and foreign countries. The foreign countries include Japan, Indonesia, and China. It is assumed that the newly hired employees may face some communication barriers as they are from different countries. Effective business communication is sending and receiving messages and information competently (Fan, Liberman, Keysar, & Kinzler, 2015). An organization’s culture enriches when the employees perform well in their job. Research shows that employees spend most of their time in their workplaces so effective communication plays a major role in achieving organizational goals. The essay will describe communication practices and styles about business communication in the Australian workplace. As Australian Grain Link Pty Ltd hires new employees, they may experience competent and incompetent communication within the workplace so the essay will offer recommendations for these new employees about most competent business communication practices. The thesis statement of the essay is that effective business communication helps in achieving organizational goals by the high performance of employees. The next sections will offer an in-depth discussion on the business communication practices and styles used by organizations and some recommendations for competent communication.
Effective business communication helps in avoiding any kind of confusion and misunderstandings arrive in organizations. It is observed that multinational organizations have different kinds of employees from different countries. They tend to use different types of communication styles. Four types of communication styles are commonly used by most of the Australian organizations. These include both verbal and non-verbal communication. These four communication styles are passive, aggressive, passive-aggressive, and assertive communication styles (Hartley & Chatterton, 2015). A passive communication style is not highly used by Australian organizations. Employees who use this communication style cannot express their inner feelings to others but allow others to express themselves. Employees tend to pretend that they support the conversation even though they cannot provide their opinions to others. Besides verbal-communication, passive communication style includes some improper non-verbal communication. Employees who use this communication style generally do not make eye contact while communicating, they slouch their shoulders when others ask them for some reply. Many international agricultural product suppliers hire employees from different countries and a passive communication style is common for this kind of organization. A passive communication style is considered as an ineffective communication style as it does not allow people to express their actual thoughts and ideas to others (Karanges, Johnston, Beatson, & Lings, 2015). It restricts the important information to be shared between the people. A passive communication style is incompetent because organizational people cannot express their thoughts and ideas to others within the workplace.
Aggressive communication style is the opposite of passive communication style. Most Australian organizational people use this communication style and they can express their feelings and opinions to others (Kernbach, Eppler, & Bresciani, 2015). This communication style ensures intense eye-contact during communication as it makes communication more realistic. This communication style becomes abusive because in this communication style the receiver of the communication cannot get any chance to offer feedback. The communicator does not listen to others because they give commands and order that others comply with what he/she says. It makes the communication verbally incompetent though the non-verbal communication behavior is competent as people make eye-contact while communicating (Lucas & Rawlins, The competency pivot: Introducing a revised approach to the business communication curriculum, 2015). Employees who use this communication style make others feel inferior. Organizations do not allow their employees to use this communication style as it is incompetent communication behavior and avoids the purpose of the communication. It makes conversation one-way.
A passive-aggressive communication style includes similar characteristics of both passive and aggressive communication styles together. Many Australian organizations experiences this kind of communication style used by its employees as the employees speak in a way as if they don't care about something (passive communication style) with indirect angered (aggressive communication style) (Men, The internal communication role of the chief executive officer: Communication channels, style, and effectiveness, 2015). Employees using this communication style sometimes muttering comments to themselves in front of others as if they don't want others to hear those words. They do not confront others about their hidden thoughts. Many employees in Australian or international organizations use this communication style because they are worried about expressing their opinions due to thought of what others might think of it. Employees who use passive-aggressive communication styles do not show disagreement openly. This communication style is also considered as incompetent as it provides no clarity and wastes time. Besides that, employees do not express their feelings and ideas openly.
The most effective and competent communication style is assertive communication (Pacquiao, Culturally Competent Multicultural Workforce, 2018). This communication style is highly used in Australian workplaces. In this communication style, employees can politely express their thoughts. It includes the opinions of others. Assertive communication style allows communicators to respect others' thoughts, ideas, and values (Solaja, Idowu, & James, Exploring the relationship between leadership communication style, personality trait, and organizational productivity, 2016). They use both verbal and non-verbal communication effectively. The most important fact about this communication style is that it values honesty in communication. Assertive communicators express their feelings and ideas and listen to others carefully. First-person statements are used in this communication style (Takino, Negotiating the challenges of using English in business communication: Listening narratives of Japanese BELF users, 2016). Employees using this communication style take the blame on themselves and clear doubts. If they disagree with someone, they take the blame for themselves. An assertive communication style is considered as competent communication. It is two-way communication. It includes expressing polite behavior, asking for feedback and listening to other people’s ideas and thoughts.
Business communication practices include mainly two types of communication practices- competent business communication practice and incompetent business communication practice (Voinea, Busu, Opran, & Vladutescu, Embarrassments in managerial communication, 2015). Competent business communication practice includes communication with knowledge of effective communication patterns. Competent business communication practice is based on three fundamental functions. These are the functionality of communication, adequacy of communication and sufficiency of communication. Functionality of communication ensures that important information is exchanged with everyone in the organization. It fulfills the daily communication need within the organization. For example, an employee needs to communicate within the workplace throughout the day. Adequacy of communication ensures that business communication meets environmental demands and achieves communication goals (White, 2015). For example, Japanese employees feel comfortable to communicate with other Japanese employees in international organizations. Sufficiency of communication includes four types of competencies- linguistic, operational, social, and strategic competence. Linguistic competence helps business communication to become competent communication practices. Jenifer & Raman, (2015) stated that international companies face major communication problems as they hire employees from different countries. Linguistic competence can be achieved by the employees when they can communicate both verbally and written with others in common language. Operational competence is based on non-verbal communication. This competence can be achieved by the employees if they have the skills to use their movements, gestures, body position and signs in a correct way while communicating with others. Social competence is acquiring knowledge about what to communicate when to communicate, where to communicate, and whom to communicate in what manner. Strategic competence is using linguistic, operational and social competence strategically and effectively to make the entire communication competent. A competent business communicator needs to possess some different characteristics. The communicator must have self-awareness, adaptability, empathy, cognitive complexity, and ethics. According to Ghobadi & Mathiassen (2016), incompetent business communication practices are observed in international organizations, mostly in Australia. The reason behind this statement is that Australian organizations, mainly international agricultural products suppliers hire employees from different countries. It is observed that employees from Japan, China, and Indonesia are mainly hired by Australian companies and for that reason, these Australian companies face communication problems between employees as hired employees have pronunciation problems and they cannot speak fluently in English (Chaidaroon, 2003). Incompetent business communication practices include non-verbal communication. For example, many employees cover their mouths while communicating and for that reason, the listener cannot listen to what the other is saying. Sometimes they use inappropriate words and mumble in front of others. This business communication practice results in organizational inefficiency in achieving organizational objectives. The next section will provide four recommendations including two competency behaviors and two incompetency behaviors.
The recommendations for the ten new employees hired by the Australian Grain Link Pty Ltd include both competent and incompetent business communication practices. Two recommendations for each business communication practice are given below.
Competent business communication includes verbal, non-verbal and written communication. In terms of verbal and non-verbal communication, the newly hired employees of Australian Grain Link Pty Ltd should possess good listening skills to achieve communicational competency. The new employees must acquire good communication skills as they are from different countries- Japan, Indonesia, and China and cannot fluently communicate in English. They should use appropriate words while speaking. They should be confident about what they are saying. Employees should use non-verbal communication to make competent communication. They should make intense eye-contact during communication. They should use appropriate body movements, gestures and voice tones while communicating. They should allow others to speak. They should be aware of the pitch while communicating.
Written communication is also very important in business communication as official communication is done through written communication. The newly hired employees should know about how to write business letters, memos, reports, emails and notices. These all written communications are now done through computer-mediated communication which is known as CMC. So these employees should know using a computer in written communication as they would have to write emails to their clients, shareholders, and suppliers of other countries.
In terms of incompetent communication, some recommendations are provided for the employees so that they can avoid any incompetency in the organizational communication in Australian Grain Link Pty Ltd. In terms of verbal communication, new employees should not lack attention while listening and communicating. They should not possess confidence in anything. They should not speak more and listen less. They should not use any improper words in organizational communication. They should not communicate in their mother tongue with others who are from different countries. Using jargon should not be entertained in organizational communication. In terms of non-verbal communication, they should never use a negative tone in communication. They should not stare at others rather than making intense eye-contact. They should not point fingers at senior employees within the organization. They should not laugh at any business meetings or conferences.
In terms of CMC, the employees should not send emails or reports before proofreading it. They should not use unofficial language in business writings. They should not rely on the computer's spelling and grammar checking facility.
Therefore it can be concluded that effective workplace communication includes effective business communication practices and styles. Effective communication skills help people to present their ideas in front of others. These skills are considered as the most important skills which employees of Australian Grain Link Pty Ltd should possess. International organizations mostly agricultural product suppliers face communication problems as they hire employees from different countries. The offered recommendations should be adopted by new employees to avoid any future communication problems.
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