What Is Business Communication And Its Types?

No one can deny the role of communication in their life. It is a building block for everyone, including businesses, to evolve in this ever-changing world continually.

The term communication can appear quite simple, but it is not. The process is not limited to just the exchange of information. It also involves other factors to process the taken information better and get the correct meaning out of it.

For businesses, communication is a method to work towards a common goal by communicating ideas, data, etc. An inefficient communication process within your business means you are leaving money on the table.

Gallup’s report shows a highly engaged team shows 21% greater profitability. The stat infers the importance of an effective communication strategy in the workplace to improve productivity and achieve organizational goals.

In this article, we will discuss various challenges in different types of business communications and how to implement a good communication strategy within your workplace to avoid conflicts, better team collaboration, and, most importantly, achieve your business goals.

Also Read35 Best Motivational Family Business Quotes By Entrepreneurs.

Some signs when you should start introspecting your business communication processes

1. Unachieved business goals

Without an effective communication strategy, you will often find your team unable to meet the business goals.

2. Avoidable big mistakes

It is a red alert for your business when you start noticing common preventable errors in your business processes.

3. Low productivity and morale of the team

A sudden change in your team’s productivity might indicate issues in your current communication system.

4. Team members are casting blame on each other

In cases of unmet goals, your team members start blaming each other. It indicates the lack of self-responsibility and discipline at your workplace.

5. Loss of clients and unsatisfied customers

Without an effective internal and external business communication strategy, you will lose your clients and have more dissatisfied customers.

Why your business needs an effective communication strategy 

  • To improve the overall productivity of the workforce.
  • To conduct the organizational operations in your company smoothly.
  • In businesses with high levels of hierarchy, ensure the information flows correctly.
  • An effective communication strategy can define the success and failure of your organization. Coherent communication flow is the building block of a reputed and successful organization.
  • If you own a small business, then an effective communication strategy allows you to ensure that employees do not misinterpret and assume the information in the wrong manner.
  • To facilitate knowledge sharing among employees.

What is business communication?  

The definition of business communication is subjective. The overall idea in business communication is to promote or market a product or brand effectively. This also includes internal information flow within a business, handling legal issues, understanding customer behavior, and other relevant topics and events.

Let’s now see different types of communication systems in business. We will discuss business owners’ and managers’ challenges in these communication systems. After that, we will discuss solutions to tackle these common communication problems in the workplace.

Types of business communication Systems

 There are two types of business communication.

1. Internal business communication

internal business communication

Any exchange of information that takes place inside your company comes under internal business communication. For example, your employees report to your business manager, and the business manager reports to you.

Internal business communication affects workplace culture and productivity. According to Forbes, employees perform 4.6 times better when top-level management hears their suggestions and ideas.

Thus, you need to identify and resolve critical communication problems on a priority basis to achieve organizational goals swiftly.

There are three types of internal business communication. Let’s understand each of these types.

Upward Communication

In upward communication, the information is transferred from subordinate to manager via verbal methods, suggestion boxes, performance reports, etc. The free flow of upward communication ensures that employees are encouraged to share their ideas and suggestions to contribute to the organization’s growth.

Downward Communication

In downward communication, the information flows from the upper management to executives and employees via handbooks, meetings, notices, speeches, etc.

Effective downward communication ensures that the employees are well-informed about the company’s news and standard protocols.

Lateral Communication

Lateral communication involves information flow between various departments in your organization. For example, your sales team communicates the effectiveness of a promotional campaign to the marketing team.

Standard mediums used for lateral communication – emails, chats, meetings, telephones, etc.

Also, check these free bulk email verification websites.

2. External Business Communication

External business communication involves exchanging information between your business and foreign entities, including customers, vendors, service providers, government, etc.

Business communication challenges  

Now that you know about different types of business communication systems. Let’s now see your business’s communication problems in each category.

Internal business communication challenges 

1. Lack of feedback

Communication is a two-way highway; if it is one way, it will usually hinder your company’s internal processes. Thus, feedback is essential at every level of communication, whether upward, downward, or lateral.

2. Too many emails

Sending too many emails for information flow in the organization is not ideal. Some processes require instant decision-making and a subsequent influx of ideas not offered by email. Employees also feel the burden of checking many emails; sometimes, they might miss some critical emails.

3. New employee onboarding process

This communication issue comes when the Human Resources department has not formulated a well-defined onboarding process for the new employees. Discrepancies in this process lead employees to be unaware of top management policies and communication protocols.

4. Communication barriers

If your employees have a wide array of cultural backgrounds, then communication issues may arise due to personal and language differences. Also, this deteriorates face-to-face interactions as both parties cannot communicate correctly. This communication problem gets amplified if a significant part of your workforce works remotely.

5. Sharing internal and external news

Ensure you properly communicate all company to your employees directly. If the news source is external or an unauthorized domestic entity, it can facilitate rumors spread in the organization. Therefore, you should be the one sharing any positive or negative news about your organization to avoid any employee gossip, which can ultimately create an unhealthy work environment.

6. Assumptions and misinterpretation

Communication is not only just about spoken words. Most of the time, the tone of words and body gestures, such as facial expressions, hand movements, etc., can alter the context of the information.

7. Too reliant on technology for communication

Technology makes our lives easier to communicate with others, but over-reliance on technology can also affect your business communication strategy.

Face-to-face meetings facilitate the instant flow of facts and data, which tends to be more productive. Emails, chats, etc., are essential too, but they are not as productive as face-to-face meetings. Therefore, include technology relevant to your business communication strategy and overuse it.

Internal business communication challenges solutions 

team collaboration at workplace

1. Team collaboration tools

Slack, Skype, Microsoft Teams, etc., are some of the best team collaboration tools you can use in your organization.

With the help of these tools, you can facilitate real-time communication. Additionally, you get other useful features like file sharing, remote screen sharing, call conferencing, etc.

2. Social business platform

For big-sized companies, using a social business platform can solve issues related to cultural background differences that can affect communication. Also, it allows your employees to form social bonding with each other.

3. Employee newsletters

To keep employees up to date with company news and policies, send them regular newsletters. However, keep in mind that if you overdo this activity, there is a possibility that they might miss essential newsletters due to the many emails they receive daily.

4. Translations:

If your workforce has diverse cultural and language backgrounds, you should always include the translated copies in the newsletters or other employee support documents like handbooks, product guides, etc.

5. Employee Engagement Activities:

The people who play together, work together, grow together. Your HR department must proactively work on strategies to engage your employees in playful activities so that they get to know each other better. Humans naturally tend to communicate better with people. We know each other better.

Boost your internal communication with Cloud Telephony

cloud telephony

Cloud adaptation by organizations is on the rise as it allows them to care less about the IT infrastructure and focus more on the business part.

A virtual phone number service allows you to unite your workforce with the power of VoIP technology. Getting a local or toll-free number for your business can streamline your internal and external communication processes.

Let’s understand this with an example. Suppose you take a local phone number for your business. With a local phone number, you get several extensions that you can configure on softphones and VoIP adapters to dial and receive calls. After setting extensions, you can provide these extensions to various teams (product support, billing, sales, etc.) in your organization.

The best part of any virtual phone number service is an unlimited free extension to extension calling. You also get call conferencing features that enable your employees to make instant decisions by conducting meetings. The same applies to toll-free, vanity, and other virtual phone numbers.

Also Read5 Encryption Algorithms For Cloud Data Security.

External business communication challenges 

external business communication

The foremost objective of external business communication is to shape public perception regarding your brand or product. External communication is more expensive than internal business communication, requiring a hefty budget for PR and marketing. Still, in the long run for your business, it is crucial to have a nifty external business communication strategy as it can define its success and failure.

As shaping your audience’s perception is not easy, it involves various challenges, and it is apparent that your business faces some problems.

Here are some external business communication problems you might face.

1. Shaping public perception:

As said earlier, shaping public opinion is complex and involves a specific and goal-oriented strategy. It includes various activities, including media stories, press releases, newsletters, company brochures, etc., to showcase your organization’s ethics, work culture, and professionalism.

Toll-free numbers are an excellent tool to shape public perception of your company. Most people associate toll-free numbers with credible, authentic, and customer-first organizations. Local virtual numbers can help your business to establish a solid local presence.

2. Reach new customers

With the advent of technology, businesses have many options to reach and attract new customers. The most effective way is to get a website where potential customers can find all the information about your products and services.

Social media and blogs allow cost-effective targeting of your desired demographics.

With all these benefits of Internet marketing, there are many downsides, including negative social reviews and blog commenting. Online reputation management thus comes into play. However, it brings more positives to business than unexpected outcomes in the long run.

Virtual phone numbers can best serve the purpose of attracting new customers. Toll-free numbers allow your users and customers to call your business for free, whereas local numbers establish a strong trust within them.

You can also opt for vanity numbers, which are effortless to remember. With vanity numbers, users can dial your number reflexively without looking for it elsewhere. With a virtual business phone number service, you will attract more customers, which can result in higher revenue.

The Real PBX offers a single-click integration to Zoho CRM with your cloud telephony solution. After Zoho CRM integration, you can use Zoho CRM to manage prospects’ data easily, quickly call customers with a single click, and other essential features to streamline customer servicing and offer a delightful experience to your customers.

3. Promotional & marketing resources

A business’s public image can be a reason for its success or failure. One misquoted statement, newsletter, etc., will ruin your expensive business communication plan and affect your organization’s revenue.

4. Live events, webinars, and conferences

To develop your organization’s business, you must interact with other companies. While there are many B2B networking sites on the internet, like LinkedIn, you still need to go out to live events, webinars, and conferences to form profitable relationships with other organizations.

External business communication challenges solutions

1. Market Research

The first rule of external business communication is knowing your audience. Knowing your ideal audience demographics allows you to make strategic marketing plans. For example, you can push out more content addressing your customers’ pain points.

2. Be on the right platforms

The second benefit of detailed market research is knowing where your ideal customers spend their time online. When you know which platforms to target, you can better direct your marketing efforts.

3. Focus on delivering value

Talking less and doing more is another crucial element of external business communication. The entire goal of your business should be to provide value to your customers and the targeted audience. Hence, push out more information that reflects your core brand values.

4. Relate with your audience

While releasing marketing collateral like Ebooks, company brochures, product guides, etc., ensure the materials relate to your audience. Your marketing material can work wonder if you personalize it with the user’s current problems and how your brand or product can help them resolve them.

5. Use videos

As said, a picture is worth more than a thousand words. Similarly, a video is worth more than pictures. Most people these days prefer watching videos over reading. Therefore, your business can strategically utilize videos for promotions and send its brand message to the public.

6. Better resource planning

As many options are available for your company to connect with potential stakeholders, you must utilize resources efficiently. The first step is to define a budget and goals. Finally, implement the strategy in the scope of your tight budget.   

Final Thoughts 

This ultimate guide to business communication will help you identify various business communication challenges and how to resolve them to design and implement an effective communication strategy at your organization.

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