Downward And Upward Communication Pdf

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When leaders and managers share information with lower-level employees, it is called downward, or top-down, communication. While downward communication may sometimes invite a response, it is usually one-directional rather than reciprocal—the higher-level communicator does not invite or expect a response from the lower-level recipient. Effective downward communication gives employees a clear understanding of the message they have received.

Upward communication vs downward communication

Received: January 01, Published: ,. Citation: DOI:. Download PDF. Effective channels of communication are important in universities in Nigeria, because every administrative function and activity involve some form of direct or indirect communication. Whether planning and organizing or heading and monitoring, university administrators communicate with and through other people.

One essential characteristic of successful universities is the proper channels of communication. Good academic performance is made up not of a series of isolated processes but a closely interrelated channels of communication which combine to produce an effective academic production. This paper was designed to clarify issues on administration and channels of communication in Nigerian universities.

The specific objective of the paper was to determine the role of effective channels of communication in university administration.

This paper also examines organizational structure, types and directions to channels of communication for effective university administration. It concluded that university administration is successful through communication flow in four directions— upward, downward, horizontal and vertical. Recommendations for improving administration in universities through directions to channels of communication in Nigeria were offered.

Keywords : universities, administration, organizational structure, communication, channels. In Nigeria, the Universities are veritable tools for the realization of national development, the development of cultural citizens and promotion of basic research. The Federal Republic of Nigeria FRN states that the goals of University Education are to: Intensify and diversify its programmes for development of high and manpower in the development of within the context of the needs of the nation.

Make professional course contents to reflect national requirement. Make all students as improvement in University education to offer general study courses such as the history of ideas, philosophy of knowledge and nationalism. The ultimate aim of every university is to accomplish its set goals.

The attainment of this noble target is always or Jeopardised by administrative structures put in place by the management. University administration is employees responsible for maintenance and supervision with joint responsibilities. Some types of administrative structure exist in Nigerian Universities, as they are administered by individuals involved in a number of planning, organizing, directing, controlling and evaluating activities of major units. Anyakoha et al. However, one essential characteristic of successful Universities is proper channels of communication.

Good academic performance is made up not of a series of isolated processes but of a closely interrelated channels of communities which combine to produce an effective academic production. Effective channels of communication are important in Universities because every administrative function and activity involve some form of direct or indirect communication. Whether planning and organizing or heading and monitoring, University administrators communicate with and through other people.

This implies that every person's communication skills affect both personal and organizational effectiveness. A recent study by Yate 6 indicated that school administrators rated communication skills as the most important characteristics of an ideal institution. University administration works best when each department and unit within the institution clearly understands its role and relationship to other departments and units and when communication among governing council, the administration and the faculty is regular, open and unmediated.

Too often, the vice— chancellor serves as the sole consult for faculty council communication. While this practice may be efficient, it is not always effective in enhancing understanding between governing council and faculties. Conceptual model for organizational channels of communication. The theoretical underpinning of the model come from theories of organizational communication 8 , 9 transaction cost analysis 10 , 11 and relational contracting theory.

Norms of organization sharing affect the nature of communication flows between channel members. In turn, the nature of these communication flow forms the basis for summary judgments about communication quality. An examination of the extent to which frequency, directionality and formality are associated with perceptions of quality of communication. Because of the need to understand what factors predict opportunistic behavior, the formality of communication flows as one such factor which can inhibit the distortion and withholding of information.

Organizational structure and channels of communication in universities. The effort to realize organization basic responsibilities necessitates the need for a formal structure which could be organic or mechanistic for the provision of adequate resources which are human, material and time.

These resources are coordinated and controlled under the auspices of well trained and dynamic leaders. Mullins 16 , 17 described the structure of an organization as the pattern of relationship between roles and its different parts.

The structure of the organization varies from simple organization to complex ones. Thus, Hall 18 identified three basic rationales for an organizational structure which include the production of organizational output, regulating the influence of individual variations and controlling the exercise of powers. For an organization such as the university to achieve synergy for success as noted by Masshank, 19 it would require the manager's ability to coordinate and integrate its manpower and other resources.

The term organizational structure refers to the formally prescribed pattern of relationships existing between various units of an organization. Such diagrams provide graphic representations of the formal pattern of communication in an organization. An organizational chart consists of various boxes and the lines connecting them.

The lines connecting the boxes in the organizational chart are lines of authority showing who must answer to whom—that is, reporting relationships. Each person is responsible for answers to the person at the next higher level to which he or she is connected. At the same time, people are also responsible for or give orders to those who are immediately below them.

The boxes and lines form a blueprint of an organization showing not only what people have to do jobs performed including appropriate job titles , but with whom they have to communicate for the organization to operate properly. The organisational structure in Nigerian universities could be described as being complex due to their fragmentation, participatory in decision— making, centralization of authority and high level of formalisation.

A typical example of an organisational structure of a state University in Nigeria is depicted below Figure 1 :. The basic process of communication is similar with many different features. One unique feature of an organization has an impact on the communication process, namely its structures.

The structure of an organization should provide channels of communication. Organizations are often structured in ways that dictate the communication patterns that exist. Communication channels are the means through which people in an organization communicates. Thought must be given to what channels are used to complete various tasks because using all inappropriate channels for a task or interaction can lead to negative consequences.

Complex messages require richer channels of communication that facilitate interaction to ensure clarity. The communication channels can flow down from superiors or across from and to co— workers of the same hierarchical level of authority. Organizations have several types of communication channels like verbal, written and non— verbal. Verbal communication is spoken communication used in day to day activities with no record kept unless the communication is recorded in the team meetings and live presentations.

Written communications include any communication done with the written word including letters, memos and even a simple note scratched out on a napkin.

Written communication is a much more formal channel of communication which permits your time to think and process your message sense before sending it and achieve the message for use later. It can be impersonal means of communication like policies, letters, memo, manuals, notices and announcements. Non— verbal communication actually communicates without saying or writing anything. It involves using body language, to sends dues, such as happiness, satisfaction, anger, worry and fear.

Face— to— face or personal communication is one of the richest channels of communication that can be used within the university. The best benefits of face to face communication are that it's personal and bidirectional. It improves the speaking, writing and presentation skills of administrators. When you interact with someone, it's easier to build rapport and enhance trust. Also speaking in person, you can pick up on non— verbal cues that would be missed by sending an e— mail.

This includes speeches team meetings, focus groups, brown bag lunches, social events and gathering and management by wandering around. Group— levels communication occurs in teams units and employee resource or interest groups.

The focus on these levels is information sharing, issue, discussion, task, problem— solving and consensus building. Organization— level communication focused on such matters as vision and mission, policies, new initiatives and organizational knowledge and performance. This communication often follows a cascade approach where administrator at hierarchical channels communicates with their respective staff.

Personal communication networks in University organization can be formal, informal or unofficial. Formal communication channels written or oral, transmit information such as the goals, policies and procedures on organization messages.

This type of communication channel follows a chain of command. This means information official through desired channels of the message to the next level staff. This includes circulars, board meetings, staff meetings, departmental meetings or workgroup meetings done to enforce organisational rules and regulations. It is usually found on organisational charts, policy manuals or hierarchical structures.

Informal communication is a communication between operations depicted in an organisational chart which does not function as smooth or as trouble— free as the chart may imply. In most organizations, operatively channels of communication have developed outside the hierarchical structure. This type of interaction does not reflect officially designated channels of communication.

The grapevine emerges from social and personal interests of the employees rather than the formal requirement of the organisational communication is inherent and evens necessary aspects of organisational life. The commonly informal communication include brown— bagging gathering, Lunch with the chancellor, town hall meetings.

Other informal channels are twitter, facebook, videos, cartoons, mode of dressing and talking. It creates a relaxed, comfortable climate. Unofficial communication channels recognize the fact that sometimes communication that takes places within an organization is interpersonal. The minutes of a meeting may be a topic of discussion among employees, sports, politics and TV shows share the floor, while the ideal communication web is a formal structure in which informal communication can take place.

Unofficial communication channel exists in an organization. The common formal and informal channels of communication through new technologies in universities are e— mail, news letter, portal and social media, broadcast media, mobile electronic like voice mail, intranets, blogs, podcasts, chartroom, business TV, Video conferencing, instant messages, system wikis and electronic town hall meetings.

Effective listening is crucial to learning; understanding, conflict resolution and productive teamwork. It helps administrators in universities improve employee morale, retain employees and uncover and resolve problems. Yet, many studies suggest that most administrators are not good listeners and few organisations devote resources to developing listening skills in leaders. Leadership styles also affect communication channels.


Effective interpersonal communication has long been recognized as basic to any successful human enterprise. Ignoring that good advice, my company has developed a theory of communications that, once recognized and applied, has helped solve problems in attitude and operational effectiveness. Serious communications problems in the company were documented in a study made in by a New England Telephone task force and Daniel Yankelovich, Inc. This study team uncovered a strong desire on the part of employees to play a larger role in decisions affecting their jobs and the company. At the same time, higher management saw the need for an accurate, timely, and unfiltered flow of communications from within the company that would help it perceive and react to change in an effective manner. Accordingly, the company developed a program to respond to those needs and desires. In the final section I offer suggestions for improved up-and-down communications channels that may be useful to other organizations.

Differene Between Downward Communications and Upward Communication

Received: January 01, Published: ,. Citation: DOI:. Download PDF. Effective channels of communication are important in universities in Nigeria, because every administrative function and activity involve some form of direct or indirect communication.

Upward and Downward Communication

Communication begins with the sender, who must present the message clearly and appropriately. This is vital for the sender, for the reason that if the message is not clear and appropriate, the message is lost in translation. The message in itself has to be intelligible and comprehensible.

Clear and effective communication is essential in any workplace. However, many times, the conversation of business communication can center around company branding and its impact on the consumer. Work environments contain a diversity of personality types and different styles of digesting communications. However, there are two primary forms which dominate the internal workspace.

Arts & Humanities Open Access Journal

Posted by Terms compared staff Mar 17, Management. Strong and effective communication is very important in every workplace and plays a crucial role in long term survival of any organization. Right set of communication from the right desk at the right time extends positive vibes throughout the organization. Many time the conversation of a business communication centers around the branding of company and its effect on the consumer.

1 Response
  1. Patrick G.

    The structure of an organization should provide for communication in three distinct directions: downward, upward, and horizontal. These three directions.

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