The Oxford dictionary describes Communication as “The imparting or exchanging of information by speaking, writing, or using some other medium”. It is a simple context, but it plays a vital role in establishing a Common sense of purpose in the workplace. The way in which we communicate is important, the nature, frequency style must be considered for communication to be effective. The who, what, why and to whom are important factors affecting the success of communication and a shared sense of purpose.For effective communication it is vital that only the necessary information is concentrated on because the important messages could be lost if there is a lot of unnecessary communication. Messages should be clear and only targeted to those that you wish to reach. Not everything needs to be conveyed, the message should be fit for the audience. This could also waste a lot of an Organisations time.
Good Communication can create job satisfaction in lower levels of an organisation because they need to know that the senior managers are demonstrating that they are too working towards the shared values. The senior managers of the Fire Service have scheduled visits to the stations, so they can answer any questions and inform the firefighters of their current objective. This is generally good for communication as the firefighters feel that their views are being listened to but there are also meetings between the Command staff as not everyone is comfortable sharing information or challenging decisions of the senior managers face to face.We have to carry out annual Independent Development Reviews (IDR’s) in the Fire service which is key in communicating the vision and establishing a common sense of purpose. It gives employees a chance to inform the Line manager what they thought went well in the last year which enables them to reflect on the good work they have done. They have an opportunity to say what they thought hadn’t gone well which is an opportunity to give constructive feedback on certain issues which the managers will pass on and act upon or communicate a reason for this.
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There is also chance to look at the “Pathway” to ascertain if there are any development opportunities available to them. It was during my IDR that I discovered that I could apply for a PTTLS course to enhance my opportunity to become part of the Training department. There are questions in the IDR relating to the Vision and Mission of the Fire Service to ensure everyone is aware and sharing the same values.