Few organizations exist in order to communicate. Most have another purpose ; to sell a product or service , to supply a social need , to implement plans and policies. Yet to do those things ,organizations spend an enormous amount of time , energy and money communicating.
People in organizations communicate in many ways : face-to-face in two person discussions, in informal groups, in meetings , by email, in old fashioned letters ormemos and in reports.
All of these methods are verbal communications, or communications that uses words. Nonverbal communication does not use words . Pictures , computer graphics and company logos are examples of non – verbal communications. Interpersonal nonverbal signals including smiles, who sits where at a meeting, the size , location and window access of an office and how long someone keeps a visitor waiting.
Studies have found that people generally spend 70 to 85 % of their work time deliberately communicating , writing , reading , speaking and listening . Often most of an executive’s day is spent in communication modes.
Your technical skill whether it be in accounting , marketing , sales or computer technology may get you your first job. The ability to speak and write effectively may help you keep it as well as prospe . A major study showed that the inability to write was a major reason that accounts were fired As you rise in an organization , technical skills matter less and more general skills including the ability to write and speak will determine how fast and far you go.
Most students understand the importance of effective oral communication skills. But some are not convinced that they need to be able to write well to succeed professionally. They may think that a secretary or technical writer will do their writing , or think that they can use form letters if they have to write. Each of these claims has fundamental flaws in their logic.
Today , many workers in business and government still have their letters , memos and reports typed on a computer by someone else.
However this situation is changing rapidly as more and more business’s realize the economy and simplicity of the prevalence and standardization of computerized office software packages.
You may be lucky to still have someone else type out your letters . However this is not going to last long. And the best secretary , cannot compensate for fundamental errors in organization, logic, audience, analysis or tone.
Sometimes you may finish a letter after five o’clock . Sometimes you may need to work on weekends or be ” on the road “. You will most likely need to put the finishing touches on a report that is due at 9 a.m. Monday. The ability to write well makes you much more independent and versatile.
You may think that you can use form letters that are widely available for the office software packages.
A form letter is a prewritten fill-in-the-blank setup designed to fit standard situations. The writer can personalize a form letter or report by having it individually filled out with the recipients.
Using a form letter is Ok but some of those available are dreadfull and will leave a very bad impression of you .
Even good form letters cover only routine situations. The higher you rise in your organiation , the more frequently you will face situations that are not routine and demand creative and more specific solutions. If you develop the skills necessary for good writing and original thinking , you are far more likely to realize your potential and reach your career goals.
Many people in business and government routinely write from 10 pages of letters and memos a week and in some cases it not uncommon for 20 to 35 pages a day. Most people find speaking easier than writing. The phone is faster and usually cheaper than than a letter or memo. Email is of course is among the cheapest means to communicate both in time spent in delivery , effectiveness and cost.
People in organizations put things in writing , rather than depend exclusively on oral communication to create a record , to convey complex data , to make a message to multiple recipients succinctly , efficiently and effectively.