This is the first of four chapters on interpersonal skills and builds the foundation for subsequent chapters on gaining power and influence, motivation and managing conflict. The skill most often rated as essential in effective management, both in Australia and overseas, is competent interpersonal communication. In this chapter it is called communicating supportively since it conveys support to the person receiving the message. It is the key to empowering people. Communication helps to ease fears in a number of ways. Communication and information are the life-blood of an organisation - when leading change processes leadership equals communication:
Supportive communication is treated differently in this text than in most Organisational Behaviour or management books whose chapters almost always focus on the accuracy of message delivery and the processes of sending, receiving, and interpreting messages. While important, these activities are not generally the elements that either foster or inhibit effective management communication. Instead, specific aspects of communicating supportively are the most crucial to effectively managing (and empowering) people.
Communicating supportively is most useful in two kinds of situations: coaching situations, where a person must give advice or direction to another and counselling situations, where a person must communicate understanding and help with problem recognition. Because the effective display of many of the other management skills depends heavily on communicating supportively competency, this will be an important chapter to spend time on in the course.
Competent supportive communication leads to stronger interpers...
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ii. A regular meeting with each subordinate.
b. A PMI is a regular, one-on-one meeting between a manager and his or her subordinates.
c. The PMI is an improvement meeting where both the manager and the subordinate try to make improvements, share information, and hold each other accountable for progress (characteristics of the PMI program are outlined in Table 5.4).
Summary (p. 261)
11. The most important barriers to effective communication in organisations are interpersonal.
12. Effective communicators adhere to the principles of supportive communication this ensuring greater clarity and understanding of messages while making people feel accepted, valued and supported.
Behavioural guidelines (p. 262)
13. The text outlines ten behavioural guidelines to help skill practice (these are worth highlighting to your students).
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