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Special Items

Communication networks

Concern the way information flows between people in a particular work group. They include the following: The wheel – where information is communicated to and from one central person, section or department, eg a departmental head briefing individual members of staff, or head office communicating price changes to individual branches and receiving confirmation that these have been actioned; The circle – where individual people, sections or departments, only communicate with two other people, sections or departments. It is often associated with lateral communication; the chain and Y chain – where information is communicated by one individual, section or department who then passes the information on to someone else, eg in the formal organisational hierarchy, senior management passing information through middle to junior management; The all channel network – where there is no central figure. Each person (or section or department) communicates with any other person. This is only possible with smaller groups. It is common to decentralised organisations.

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