Integrating Mechanisms for Increased Communication

Instructor: Sean Kennedy

Sean has 8 years experience as a supervisor and has an MBA with a concentration in marketing.

Integrating mechanisms are essential to increase communication in a business. In this lesson, we will discuss the importance of liaison roles, task forces, cross-functional teams, and integrating roles.

What are Integrating Mechanisms?

Do you ever wonder how communication flows in an organization? Integrating mechanisms help increase communication and coordination so that different divisions can work together to solve problems. Integrating mechanisms are essential for larger companies because communication can get lost between the various departments. Having an intermediary allows for information to be transferred between departments appropriately.

Liaison Roles

Liaison roles help communicate information from one division of a business to another. Typically, someone in management acts as a liaison; there should be a liaison in each department of the enterprise to allow all information to be communicated effectively. The liaisons should meet as frequently as needed to help communicate information to each other. Communication can be person-to-person, via email, or over the phone. The importance of the liaison role is that information can be transmitted throughout the different divisions and presented clearly.

For example, say you work for a large sales company, which has a marketing department, sales department, accounting department, research and development, and human resources. Your company is about to introduce a new product, and it would be vital to have a liaison to talk to the different departments to determine price, marketing efforts, and how it will be sold. Having a liaison for all departments allows the information to flow quickly and efficiently.

Task Forces

Task forces are temporary cross-functional work groups that are assigned to solve a particular problem. A task force comes together for a short-term period to assist in resolving a problem. The task force is made of individuals from different divisions, and they have varying levels of authority within the company. A task force brings together people with expertise in the particular area of the project. A task force is created to help give upper-level management solutions to an issue, or precise recommendations. A task force has time constraints that make it vital for them to come up with a solution or suggestion promptly.

For example, a task force may be used if a company is thinking about changing its technology and software. In business, the software used by employees plays a significant role in how their job gets completed. Creating a new technology infrastructure would require a member of each department to get together to discuss ways the technology within the company can be improved. It is essential to use a task force to get opinions from the various departments, and to have a time constraint on when the problem can be fixed.

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