Communication through a number of different feedback mechanisms.

            Communication is something that is
encountered on an everyday, every second basis. Everything living thing and
even every technological entity communicates in some form or fashion. Communication
is an important aspect of life, and I believe is what ultimately molds and
shapes us into our own individual selves. Through communication, we are able to
grow and better understand one another throughout the process, while also
gaining experiences that can help us to lead lives that are fulfilling. Effective
communication, especially in a professional environment, is what leads to
people having very successful and influential careers, as well as, the success
of companies in a technological world.

            What
is communication? According to our text book, Supervision: Managing for Results, communication is the “process of
passing information and understanding from one person to another.” Within the
workplace, it is your supervisor’s or manager’s responsibility to set the standards
of effective communication for your department. By effectively communicating
with one another, we are fundamentally able to understand one another and the
reasoning behind certain decisions that are made on the job. At a basic level,
effective communications are achieved by following what is called the
communication process, which is a strategic procedure that allows for the
thoughts from one individual to be effectively and correctly relayed to the
person on the receiving end.

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With the communication
process, it is the supervisor’s or manager’s duty to be able to understand the
verbal, as well as the nonverbal communication signals from their employees. Furthermore,
effective communication is determined through a number of different feedback
mechanisms. During this process, the following guidelines should be followed:  decide whether or not feedback is needed, determine
a few items to focus on to allow for selection, be impartial when providing
feedback, make sure it is presented in a timely manner and can be easily
understood, lay a foundation for responding to future actions, present factors
to the individual that should be praised, and always allow for the recipient of
the feedback to have the opportunity to respond.  

            There
are many different forms of communication that involve, listening, verbal
communication, nonverbal communication, emotional awareness, and written communication.
On a daily basis, these communication methods are intertwined when having
conversations with people on the job or even at social events. Of these forms
of communication, written and verbal communication are the ones that we see as
being the most common. Written communication is the form that is utilized most
often in today’s time. In a business setting, this kind of communication
includes the following: emails, text messaging, hand-written letters, instant messaging,
proposals, contracts, reports, and memos. Verbal communications deal with face to
face or over the phone conversations that are had between two or more people. Within
a business setting, this form of communication is most often utilized when teams
or groups are having formal or informal meetings, as well as with impromptu
conversations had with co-workers throughout the day or at “social mixers” offered
by organizations within a company.

            I
currently intern for First Tennessee Bank in Memphis, TN and every form of communication
can be observed in the office throughout the day. At our First Ops West location,
which is our Information Technology and Loan Operations division, we have an “open
concept” office space. When our building was being conceptualized, our Chief Information
Officer, Bruce Livesay, wanted to create an environment that welcomes and encourages
open communication between employees and teams within the department. This is a
part of the bank’s FIRSTPOWER culture, which is “the attitude of embracing
candor, change, inclusion, and teamwork that every employee brings to the job
each day.” There is not an assigned cubicle or desk within our Information Technology
department. Instead, our department has flags setup around different desk areas
that are designated for certain teams within the department, such as Identity
Management, Treasury Management, Digital Banking and others.

            In
the IT department at First Tennessee Bank, a lot of my co-workers work remotely,
or from their homes. This means that I am not able to have a lot of face to
face, personal interaction with my fellow co-workers and team. Often times, the
form of communication I find myself utilizing during the workday is written
communication. I spend a vast majority of my time at work sending out emails or
utilizing Skype for Business, pinging (instant message) people on my team or
other teams. I spend two days out of the regular work week on conference calls
with my team and manager. Occasionally, I am brought into other calls related
to issues we are having with some of our applications.

            I
believe that within my department, and on my team specifically, there is a lot
of room for improvement in the ways that we communicate. Throughout my time at
First Tennessee Bank, my manager has had to cancel and reschedule a lot of meetings
due to scheduling conflicts with other meetings he had on his agenda. This
meant that sometimes I would go a couple of weeks without even speaking to or
hearing from my manager since he works remotely. In addition, there are some
members on my team that I have never even seen before, I’ve only spoken to them
over the phone, email, or instant messaging. I think that First Tennessee Bank could
make improvements in this area, by flying its remote employees into Memphis,
our bank’s headquarters, so that everyone can meet each other face to face. In
addition, I believe that my manager should schedule more one-on-one meetings
with his employees. This would help to build better relations as well as create
an environment in which we are better able to understand the expectations of our
leaders.

             Communication is an important aspect in life,
especially in a business or corporate environment where so many important
decisions are made based on the conservations had within the organization. Without
effective communication, businesses would not be able function at a high level,
ultimately being unfit to meet its customer’s needs, internally and externally.
The success of businesses and organizations all over the world depends on
effective communication in order to succeed.

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