In the simplest kind of communication, both the sender and the receiver perform the encoding and decoding functions automatically.
Source or Sender
The communication cycle begins when one person called the sender wants to transmit a fact, idea, opinion or other information to someone else. A manager, for instance, might call the research department to send the latest information on a particular market.
The second step is to encode the message into a form appropriate to the situation. The encoding might take the form of words, facial expressions, gestures, physical actions and symbols such as numbers, pictures, graphs etc. Indeed, most communication involves a combination of these. The encoding process is influenced by the content of the message, the familiarity of the sender and receiver and other situational factors.
After the message has been encoded, it is transmitted through the appropriate channel or medium. Common channels or media in organizations include face-to-face communication using the media of sound waves, light, letters and reports.
The person to whom the message is sent, called the receiver interprets the meaning of the message through the process of decoding. This process may be simple and automatic, but it can also be quite complex. Even when you are just reading a letter, you may need to use all your knowledge of the language, your experience with the letter-writer and so on. If the intended message and the received message differ a great deal, there is a communication gap and misunderstanding is likely to follow.
The receiver can be an individual, a group, or an individual acting on behalf of a group. The sender has generally little control over how the receiver will deal with the message. The receiver may ignore it, decide not to try to decode, understand it or respond immediately. The communication cycle continues when the receiver responds by the same steps back to the original sender, which is called the feedback.
In the communication process, noise takes on a meaning slightly different from its usual one. Noise refers to any type of disturbance that reduces the clearness of the message being transmitted. Thus, it might be something that keeps the receiver from paying close attention such as someone coughing, other people talking closely, a car driving by etc. It can be a disruption such as disturbance in a telephone line, weak signal due to bad weather etc. It can also be internal to the receiver such as tiredness or hunger or minor ailments, which may affect the message.
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