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The Managerial Communication Process

Managerial communication occurs at five levels: intrapersonal, interpersonal, group, organizational, and intercultural. Each of these levels is considered in this text.

This chapter also presents a model for strategic managerial communication that may help managers reduce errors in critical situations. While it is not possible to present concrete rules that will serve in every instance, we explored factors the manager should review before communicating.

These factors are presented as three layers of an onion model. The first layer includes climate and culture. The communication strategy must be consistent with the context of national and organizational cultures. The second layer involves the sender, receiver, and purpose of the message. The third layer includes the message, channel, environment, and time of communication. The appropriate strategic implementation of these factors—the model's core—depends highly on these three layers of variables.

Considering these elements during the development phase, however, is insufficient to ensure communication success. Managers must also seek feedback and measures of effectiveness to ensure continuous improvement of their interaction skills.

Finally, this chapter examined critical errors in the communication process. The most common are (1) the assumption-observation error, (2) the failure to discriminate, and (3) the allness error. The assumption-observation error results when a manager communicates something as real when no observable evidence is present. The failure to discriminate is the failure to perceive and communicate changes in events or significant differences between things. The error of allness occurs when a person structures communication as if it states all there is to know about a subject. Managers need to consider all these factors and human foibles when communicating.

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