SEM 1 MB0039 1 Business Communication

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Master of Business Administration-MBA Semester 1
MB0039– Business Communication - 4 Credits
(Book ID: B1128)
Assignment Set- 1 (60 Marks)

Note: Each question carries 10 Marks. Answer all the questions.

Q 1. Describe any situation that you experienced where the communication went wrong because the listening was faulty. Analyze the situation by explaining the type of listening barrier. . How could this barrier be overcome? (10 marks).

The following example illustrates an organizational barrier to communication. By the time the message is passed down from the Chief to the lower level Executives, it is distorted completely, so much so that the original message is interpreted differently by each level in the organization.

Memo from CEO to Manager: Today at 11 o’clock there will be a total eclipse of the sun. This is when the sun disappears behind the moon for 2 minutes. As this is something that cannot be seen every day, time will be allowed for employees to view the eclipse in the parking lot. Staff should meet in the lot at ten to eleven, when I will deliver a short speech introducing the eclipse, and giving some background information. Safety goggles will be made available at a small cost.

Memo from Manager to Department Head: Today at ten to eleven, all staff should meet in the car park. This will be followed by a total eclipse of the sun, which will appear for 2 minutes. For a moderate cost, they will be made safe with goggles. The CEO will deliver a short speech beforehand to give us all some information. This is not something that can be seen everyday.

Memo from the Department Head to Floor Manager: The CEO will today deliver a speech to make the sun disappear for 2 minutes in the form of an eclipse. This is something that cannot be seen everyday so staff will meet in the car park at ten or eleven. This will be safe, if you pay a moderate cost.

Memo from Floor Manager to Supervisor: Ten or eleven staff are to go to the car park, where the CEO will eclipse the sun for 2 minutes. This does not happen everyday. It will be safe, and as usual it will cost you.

Memo from Supervisor to Staff: Some staff will go to the car park today to see the CEO disappear. It is a pity this doesn’t happen everyday.

Communication was filtered or misinterpreted because of the following barriers:

Organizational Barriers – In organizations that are too hierarchical, that is, where there are multiple “layers”, messages may have to pass through many levels before they finally reach the receiver. Each level may add to, modify or completely change the message, so much so that it becomes distorted by the time it reaches the intended receiver. In other words, there is likely to be loss of meaning and the message may not reach the receiver in the same way as it was intended by the sender.

Another type of organizational barrier is a departmental barrier. This means that each department in an organization functions in isolation and there is no co-ordination or communication between them.

This barrier could be overcome by the following methods:
1. Encourage Feedback – Organizations should try to improve the communication system by getting feedback from the messages already sent. Feedback can tell the managers whether the message has reached the receiver in the intended way or not.

2. Create a Climate of Openness – A climate of trust and openness can go a long way in removing organizational barriers to communication. All subordinates or junior employees should be allowed to air their opinions and differences without fear of being penalized.

3. Use Multiple Channels of Communication – Organizations should encourage the use of multiple channels of communication, in order to make sure that messages reach the intended receivers without fail. This means using a combination of both oral and written channels, as well as formal (official) and informal (unofficial) channels of communication. The types of...
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