Business communication: the concept, types and features
Communication in a general sense is an information exchange between people or their groups. There are interpersonal, social (functional-role), business communication. The subject of our conversation will be the last type.
What is it?
Business communication is interaction in the sphere of official relations which purpose is the decision of concrete tasks, achievement of certain results, optimization of any activity. Thus each participant has the status – the chief, the subordinate, colleagues, partners.
If communication takes place between people who are on different steps of the career ladder (manager and executor), then there is a vertical relationship, i.e. subordinate relations. If interaction is conducted on the principles of equal cooperation, it is a horizontal relationship.
It is business communications that a person carries out every day at work, at the university, in schools, official institutions. So called communication of teachers and students, supervisors and subordinates, colleagues, partners and competitors.
The extent to which the interlocutor is familiar with the rules, forms and methods of such communications depends on whether he will be able to achieve his goal. Partners must speak the same language (both literally and figuratively), understand each other, and have common social experience.
Terms of business communication
In order for business communication to be effective, a number of conditions should be met:
- Communication should have a clear goal, in the achievement of which all persons involved in the process are interested. For example, networking, concluding a contract, agreeing on an event, developing terms of cooperation, etc.
- Participants should be in contact with each other regardless of likes and dislikes.
- Compliance with business etiquette, subordination, job roles, formal restrictions is mandatory.
By formal restrictions, we mean various regulations, routines and protocols, as well as the banal need to control the power of their own emotions and respect for the interlocutor.
Also the head or other maximally interested participant should take care that business communication is managed. It is necessary to motivate the participants to find a solution, otherwise they will be just passive observers of the meeting, who do not offer any ideas.
Forms of business communication
The two main forms of communication are contact (direct) communication and indirect (indirect) communication.
In the first case, interlocutors communicate face-to-face and have the opportunity to assess the non-verbal behavior of each other, so the effectiveness of such contact is higher. In the second case, the interaction takes place with the help of some means of communication – telephone, letters, etc.
More specifically, the following forms of business communication are the most common:
- Business conversation.
- Telephone conversations.
- Exchange of official business documents (applications, contracts, powers of attorney, memos).
- Public speaking, conferences.
In turn, using individual forms of business communication, participants can take a confrontational or a partnership approach. The first option represents confrontation: each side intends to win. The partnership approach involves finding a solution that is acceptable to all participants.
Despite the fact that types of business communications vary, they are almost always characterized by several stages:
- Preparation. This is the setting of objectives, goals, collecting and analyzing information, and determining a strategy for behavior. After all, a business meeting or negotiation is not organized in order to chat “about nothing” and find out how things are in the private life of the interlocutors.
- Planning. The meeting can be spontaneous, but it is considered that the professional should have a clear plan: what he will say, how to argue, what exactly he wants to get from the other party.
- Discussion – discussing ideas, proposals, finding common points of interest, making a joint decision.
This scheme is most relevant to negotiations. Other types of communication may not include all stages. A “cold” phone call or issuing instructions, for example, may not involve any discussion.
Styles of business communication
There are not only types of business communication, but also styles. When it comes to professional interaction, the following are most often used:
- Official-business. In turn, it has administrative and clerical, legislative and diplomatic sub-styles. Business conversation is characterized by speech clichés and certain communicative forms.
- Scientific. It is used in the preparation of reports, speeches at seminars and lectures.
- Publicistic. This includes any speech in public, including through the media.
- Conversational and everyday. Informal relations also take place in professional environment, and in some companies, they are even encouraged. Colleagues do not always communicate exclusively through memos. However, it is necessary to understand where this style is appropriate and where it is not.
Features of business communication
Why does business communication requires prior preparation for communication in advance? First, people do not just spend personal and work time on official meetings, and no one wants to wait until the initiator gathers his thoughts. Secondly, the other party is not always interested in any interaction, or is willing to cooperate, but sees it very differently.
As you know, there is no second chance for a first impression. It is necessary to be able to make contact so that all participants get in the mood for discussion. If the other party was not originally planning to work together, you should at least get the interlocutor interested and arrange a meeting at a more convenient time.
At the international level, there are peculiarities of business communication, because different cultural peculiarities can strongly interfere with the course of negotiations. For example, Americans are used to coming to a meeting on time and, after a short welcome, getting down to business. Arabs, too, are punctual, but they start a business conversation from afar, first discussing nature-weather-food. An Italian sees nothing awful in being late for a meeting and also starts a business discussion not at once. And the Japanese will avoid looking directly at each other during the conversation.
Thus, we have learned what business communication is, what its peculiarities are, what forms, types and styles are characteristic of it.
Business communication – a form of communication, based on the principles of business etiquette, aimed at interacting with individuals or a group of individuals (organization) to implement mutually beneficial results.
Business communication ethics. People taking part in business communication adhere to an official style of communication and focus on the solution and achievement of tasks. The culture of business communication is always appropriate.
The role of business communication.
The skills of successful business communication and understanding of the personality of the interlocutor, his interests, should be considered as a determining factor in the process of business meetings. The ethics of business communication prevails not only in business negotiations, but also in everyday life – allowing effective interaction with others.
Features of business communication is that the interlocutor in the process of dialogue acts as a significant personality; Interest of people, in the process of business interaction, characterizes a good mutual understanding of the tasks set; The primary goal of business communication is productive and effective cooperation.
Psychology of business communication.
Communication is the highest form of mental activity and is inherent in all sentient beings on earth, but only in humans it reaches the most perfect thought processes – is mediated and conscious, acquiring a sign system coding images, becomes a speech.
There is no period in human life, even the shortest one, at which it would not be outside the process of interaction with people. The process of business communication is often an important factor in any joint activity of people and serves as a method of improving the quality and result of their interaction. The content of such interaction is what people are engaged in, which is a common task for them, rather than personal problems that concern their inner world.
Business communication is a process of interaction between people, in which there is an exchange of information relating to business tasks, contributing to a certain result in the joint activity.
Norms of business communication.
Norms mean the presence of regulations, i.e. formal adherence to certain rules, which are determined by a particular mentality and style of behavior, which have developed in this territory, as well as professional ethical principles of business communication, which have settled in this professional circle of people.
Types of business communication.
Business communication is conventionally divided into two types:
1. Direct (direct direct direct contact. Face-to-face or telephone conversation).
2. Indirect (when there is some time delay in the process of interaction, i.e., emails, business notes, business proposals, etc.).
Direct business communication has a greater efficiency, the power of psychological suggestion and impact, indirect business communication, unfortunately, does not have such a great potential, there are more formal factors than personal participation. The most often used type of direct business communication is a business conversation. A business conversation is understood as an interpersonal verbal dialogue between several participants in order to solve business tasks or establish business relations.
Business communication is distinguished from informal communication by the fact that its process sets specific goals and objectives that require a certain result, which does not allow us to neglect the process of interaction with the interlocutor or several participants at any time.
None of the people who spin in business nowadays can avoid the process of business interaction, whether it is the firm’s own staff, business partners, government representatives, employees of judicial or legal services, and all this requires the accumulated skills and knowledge in the field of psychology of business communication.
Qualities and skills that allow you to adequately and correctly conduct yourself during a conversation – one of the key components of the success of a business person. The ability to productively implement this process of business communication is one of the first necessary skills for someone who wants to succeed in business and personal life.