Advantages and Disadvantages of Formal Communication
Formal communication is when an organization communicates by adhering to the established, official, or previously set rules, policies, and regulations of the organization. The hierarchy of command that has been established governs formal communication.
To put it another way, formal communication refers to the information flow within the formal organizational framework. The official organization's command structure is followed. Following the accepted rules, internal information is passed from one person to another. The usage of this kind of communication system is, however, possible for both internal and external objectives.
The main advantage of formal communication is proper discipline. Individuals' ability to maintain discipline will depend on how effectively they perform their tasks and activities and how well they communicate with each other. Since everyone knows exactly who reports to whom and how to get in touch with them, an organization's hierarchy should be clearly defined, and formal communication should be used for internal messages.
In addition, the members of the organization are also made aware through formal communication that discipline is necessary for the efficient operation of the group and the accomplishment of group objectives. As a result, formal communication has the advantage of maintaining discipline.
It defines authority precisely and appoints it. The effective flow of information among higher-level & lower-level personnel is facilitated by the use of formal communication within a company. As a result, new employees or lower-level personnel are better able to understand their particular roles and those of their superiors.
When the organization's members become more cognizant of the importance and meaning of formal communication, they are better able to perform their duties and obligations in a way that will boost overall efficiency. It is thus one of the essential benefits of formal communication.
System of Controllable Communication
The formal communication network is manageable, practical, and under personal control. It is possible to make changes when people are unable to effectively understand certain features or objects through a particular channel. With a change in communication methods, it is sometimes easier to convey a message or instruction in a better way.
Reduces Mistakes and Errors
Formal communication is less likely to result in errors and mistakes. Since the message is typically simple, straightforward, more understandable and comes from a reliable source when communicating within the confines of formal communication, the likelihood of mistakes and errors arising is generally reduced.
In offices or businesses, communication is usually done in a formal manner, and the official communication document is kept both in hard copy and digital form within companies. When people need a reference to offer solutions to their difficulties, it is easy to verify or cross-check information. It stands to reason, therefore, that a permanent record of formal communication is a significant advantage.
The people usually have broader access to support and help through formal communication, which enables the quick completion of tasks. The people are able to get enough knowledge, whether it's verbally or in writing, that is necessary for finishing activities quickly. Simply put, formal communication is believed to get more professional responses, which is another important advantage.
Improves Work Coordination
Formal communication can improve work coordination. Due to the explicit messaging & clearly defined chain of command, formal communication among various divisions within a company can aid them in better coordinating their work.
Integration and Coordination
It is essential for the members to collaborate and integrate with one another in order to provide the required results and support the organization's effective operation. Formal communication helps people realize that they can't work alone and must collaborate and integrate with one another in order to accomplish their goals.
Individuals are able to increase their knowledge and comprehension of the techniques, strategies, and procedures required to carry out their job responsibilities in an organized manner through formal communication.
Additionally, the group members use their knowledge to offer issues with solutions. In light of this, one of the main benefits of formal communication is considered to be knowledge expansion.
Development of Skills and Capabilities
The participants get support and assistance in developing their skills and capabilities through formal communication. It is essential for people to develop their competencies and abilities in order to carry out job responsibilities in an organized manner and to attain both professional and personal goals. This can also be facilitated by formal communication, making it one of the advantages that cannot be overlooked.
Improved Accuracy and Dependability
The individuals can boost accuracy and reliability by formally communicating with one another. In their behaviour and performance of their professional obligations, members of the organization must be trustworthy and accurate. Formal communication allows for the acquisition of methods and strategies that are essential for enhancing accuracy and reliability. It is therefore considered to be a significant benefit.
Social Term Formation among Participants
Social bonds and connections between the group's members are also essential. These are essential to effectively carrying out one's job responsibilities, achieving the intended results, feeling satisfied in one's work, and improving the organizational structure.
Information regarding job responsibilities is communicated to the people in a formal manner. As a result, one of the most important benefits of formal communication is that it encourages the development of social terminology among participants.
It may take a significant amount of time for directors or heads to connect with the entire workforce formally because they must do so through a variety of channels. Information could not be available in a shorter period of time as a result. So, one of the drawbacks of formal communication is considered to be the loss of time.
Participants may face issues and difficulties while trying to make quick decisions through formal communication. This is because formal communication often receives slow responses, taking more time. Therefore, with formal communication, it often happens that hurdles arise when decisions need to be taken right away. So, one of the drawbacks of formal communication is the delay in reaching decisions.
Not Being Courteous
When formal communication is implemented, there are sometimes instances of a lack of etiquette. There is a lack of camaraderie and an authoritarian tone when those in a leadership role are giving orders or instructions to their subordinates without being polite. As a result, one of the key barriers to formal communication is considered to be a lack of cordiality.
The norms and guidelines of the organizations must be complied with in a proper manner when using the formal communication system. Sometimes, it results in the emergence of unwanted expenses. Since it is more expensive than other means of communication, costliness is considered to be another drawback of formal communication as compared to other means of communication.
Lack of Initiative
Through the use of this kind of communication, individuals may occasionally be unable to generate initiative in their work. A lack of initiative makes it difficult for people to accomplish the intended goals and objectives. Instead, they have to keep following the intended operations continuously. Therefore, lack of initiative is considered another shortcoming of formal communication.
Taking a Governing Stance
In businesses, the information is usually sent by superiors and received by subordinates, especially in the form of commands and instructions. Official communication has an authoritarian tone, so subordinates are usually unable to disregard the instructions received from their superiors.
Even when subordinates are burdened with work-related responsibilities, individuals still need to follow the instructions of superiors. As a result, formal communication is considered to be severely constrained by an authoritarian attitude.
It is difficult for subordinates to carry out their job responsibilities in accordance with the expectations of their superiors when they are unable to interpret the information effectively. The result is the creation of misunderstandings. In that way, it may be said that one of the fundamental drawbacks of formal communication is that it frequently results in misconceptions.
Lack of Motivation
It is difficult for subordinates to become motivated when they are unable to comprehend information that is conveyed to them by their superiors effectively. One of the main barriers to performing job responsibilities is considered to be the inability to establish motivation. It is, therefore, seen as a restriction of formal communication.
Delayed Goal Achievement
Formal communication can occasionally create obstacles in the way of achieving objectives. These include the employees' incapacity to comprehend the information, their slowness in making useful decisions, their lack of desire, interest, and excitement, as well as their misinterpretations and rigidity. These reasons can delay the reaching or achieving of goals.
Formal communications are those that go through established channels inside an organization. In contrast, informal communication refers to the type of communication that travels freely throughout the organization and flows in all directions. There are pros and cons to both formal and informal communication.