Horizontal Communication & Its Importance
Did you know when the global poll for the New 7 Wonders of the World was conducted, only one – the Great Pyramids of Giza – continued in the new list. Not only as one of the wonders of the world, but pyramids have been the main attraction bringing the world’s attention to Egypt for its historical, cultural, and tourism aspects.
But why are we discussing pyramids? Well, the pyramid holds the utmost importance in the business world as much as in the world of heritage. The pyramid of hierarchy decides the responsibility, authority as well as flow of verbal communication in every organization. But what about other types of communication? Communication between peers of pyramids or horizontal communication holds equal importance, if not more, in every organization.
Before we jump into discussing its importance, let’s understand what is horizontal communication first.
What is horizontal communication?
Horizontal communication is a type of communication that happens between the people holding the same positions in the organizational hierarchy. Think of team leaders in your company or the managers of different departments.
Now you might have gotten the idea of what does this horizontal communication actually does. Well, through this form of communication, peers and colleagues share ideas, information, and attitude, which improve mutual understanding and cross-functional coordination between different teams and departments.
But why horizontal communication is so important? Let’s find out.
Importance of horizontal communication
- Improved coordination
Organizational activities are grouped into different departments, namely sales, marketing, administration, technical, human resource, accounts, and more. And every organization to efficiently achieve business goals, these departments need to work in coordination. Think of these departments as fingers of your hand that need to work together to perform a task.
Horizontal communication helps managers of different departments to harmonize interdepartmental activities, which further helps smoothly achieving business goals.
- Quick solution to the problems
Imagine that you are working with a peer on a project. So, whenever you have a question or an idea you can implement in the project, who would share it with first, your team member or manager? We heard your answer clearly! That’s the beauty of horizontal communication as it allows quick transfer of ideas and information and makes the mitigation or solving complex organizational problems easier.
It also works wonders during the conflict as colleagues and peers can try to solve issues on their level with effective communication.
- Improves efficiency among peers
Let’s pause for a moment here and observe your hand for few seconds. What do you see? All the fingers are different, right? This applies to the line hierarchy in every organization. Not all the employees serving the same positions, say, managers, are equally efficient. Some lack the required competency, ability, and efficiency in some areas.
In such cases, if managers share ideas, information, opinions, and attitude, this can help less efficient managers work on their lacking traits and contribute more to achieve organizational goals.
- Reduces the distortion of the message
As horizontal communication happens between the employees on the same level of organizational hierarchy, the message is shared directly from sender to receiver. So, this reduces the distortion of information.
- Enhances mutual understanding
Horizontal communication is a direct line of communication between managers that allow them to discuss any matter without hesitation or confusion. This helps them to mutually come to a conclusion, make decisions, or agree to a solution.
This must-have underlined the importance of horizontal communication in organizations. But what’s more important is making this channel of communication more effective for the benefit of employee productivity and the organization as a whole.
One of the effective ways is to follow communication frameworks or models. You can learn more about these communication frameworks in the online courses offered on reputed business learning sites. Join today to take your career or business management to the next level.