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Organizational Communication

My Distance Learning College


In this course, we introduce theoretical frameworks of communication which can be applied to people in organizations. Also we establish the importance of communication at all levels and within all areas of organizations. "Why don't you people communicate?" is far too often the exasperated outburst from customer to supplier, from supplier to customer, from subordinate to manager, from manager to subordinate and from colleague to fellow colleague. If the most common saying for failure is one of "I was never told," perhaps the next most common saying would be "But I was never asked!".

The problem with organizations is that they consist of more than one person. Without them there would be perfect linkage between operations; the sort of ideas given by theorists such as Fayol would be faultlessly carried out via principles such as unity of command and direction. Agreed goals could be worked towards unerringly.

There would be a sharing of perfect knowledge on product and technical information. Customers would provide unambiguous specifications; suppliers would provide goods and services which exactly fulfilled these requirements. The results of actions undertaken would be effortlessly carried back and further action taken as appropriate. There would be clarity of understanding of thoughts, feelings and emotions.

However, often this doesn't happen by the very nature of ourselves as human beings, the tasks which are to be accomplished in the work situation, and in our increasingly complex living environments.

We can, therefore, look at communication as being an enabling factor which allows us to perform the work of the organization. We can look at effects on and barriers to this process. Clearly it is extremely important for us to understand how these might arise, if we are to take a determined look at improving organizational effectiveness and efficiency. We also consider how organizational structure impacts upon the flow of information required for co-ordination, decision-making and awareness.

But, does communication go further than this? Is it good enough to just remove barriers? Such corrections may be seen as somewhat limited in scope; certainly barrier removal is an essential requirement but at the same time, communication can be used to positive effect in the organization. Thus, for instance, we consider its use as an intrinsic element of the organization's identity when we consider the communication of culture.

The term communication covers a vast field of study. There are many books you can consult on specific skills such as report writing, presentations and interviews and body language. Our aim here is to cover basic concepts which offer insights into the world of communication at work. We include communications theories and models, barriers to communication, formal and informal communication and communicating culture.

By the end of the course, you should be able to:

  • Explain what organizational communication means and its importance as a function of management.
  • Identify types and examples of verbal and non-verbal communication.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the basic features of some models of communication.
  • Analyze barriers to communication and recognize them in case study situations.
  • Explain how communication occurs within formal organization structures.
  • Explain the role of communication in decision-making and its relation to centralized and decentralized systems.
  • Discuss the advantages of both formal and informal communication networks in the organization.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the communication of the organization's culture.


Organizational Communication Certificate

Organizational Communication Certificate issued by My Distance Learning College, entitling you to use the letters SAC Cert after your name.


After each lesson there will be a question paper, which needs to be completed and submitted to your personal tutor for marking. This method of continual assessment ensures that your personal tutor can consistently monitor your progress and provide you with assistance throughout the duration of the course.

course quick facts
course code DED9355
cost $93.00
estimated time to
complete course
20 Hours
course materials
365 Days