Advantages and Disadvantages of Horizontal Communication

Horizontal communication is essential for smooth functioning of organizational activities and for interdepartmental coordination. This type of communication is especially important for larger scale enterprise. The followings are the main benefits that can be derived from horizontal communication.
Coordination: Organizational activities are divided into various departments or groups. Horizontal communication facilities coordination of various departmental activities so that organization can reach its ultimate goal.

    • Reducing Misunderstanding: Misunderstanding and conflict among the mangers and staffs are very common in organizational life. Horizontal communication helps to reduce possible misunderstanding and conflict though meeting, discussion, face to face conversation etc.
    • Strengthening group efforts: Group efforts and teamwork are essential prerequisites for organizational success. Horizontal communication helps in reducing conflicts, controversies, and differences in opinions and thus establishes consensus among the managers and workers concerned. This consensus strengthens group efforts and team spirit in the organization.
    • Performing inter departmental communication: Horizontal communication occurs between people at the same level in various departments. Therefore interdepartmental communication occurs smoothly.
    • Gaining benefits of informal communication: Though horizontal communication is formal in nature, it enjoys some degree of informality in exchanging information as the senders and the receivers hold same position, status and honor.
    • Distortion free communication: Horizontal communication is usually free form distortion. Since the sender and the receiver of horizontal communication can exchange information directly, there is no possibility of distortion of message.
    • Bringing dynamism in workplace: Horizontal communication helps to overcome misunderstanding and confects among the managers. It creates an environment of cooperation, teamwork and team spirit. This brings dynamism in performing organizational activities.

In conclusion, we can say that flow of information through horizontal communication channel is inevitable for organizational success. In the present complex business world, efficient functioning of a large business organization mostly depends on effective horizontal communication.

Disadvantages of Horizontal Communication

Though horizontal communication is essential for smooth functioning of an organization, it is not completely free form defects or flaws. Followings are the possible drawbacks of horizontal communication.

  • Rivaling attitude: Horizontal communication occurs between the people at the same rank and position. If there exists any hostility or rivalry between them, they will not exchange information spontaneously. Moreover, they will conceal their information intentionally to deprive someone from the real news.
  • Interdepartmental conflict: The success of horizontal communication depends on good relationship between sender and receiver. If there is any conflict, distrust or suspicion between them, horizontal communication will be ineffective.
  • Discouraging attitude of top management: In some cases, top managers discourage horizontal communication thinking that workers may become friendly with one another and may create threat for the management.
  • Ignoring vertical communication: More concentration on horizontal communication may work as substitute of upward and downward communication. In that case upward and downward communications are ignored.

At last, we can conclude that the above stated factors can diminish the utility of horizontal communication. So the persons concerned should be well aware of those factors when they communicate horizontally.

Conditions or Features of Business Letter

Well drafted and well structured business letter greatly contributes to business success. Business letter helps to create new relationships and to strengthen existing relationships. Therefore such letter should fulfil certain conditions or qualities.

The essential qualities or conditions of business letter use the following:


  • Simplicity of language: Business letter should be written in easy, simple and artistic language so that the reader can easily understand the inner meaning of the message. It should be free from ambiguous and unfamiliar words, outworn and stilted expression, vague terms, wordy phrases, complex sentences etc.
  • Definite structure: A business letter should always be written by following a definite structure. Well structured busyness letter can attract the attention of its readers.
  • Specific purpose: Every business letter should have a specific purpose. The language of the letter should be arranged in such a way so that the reader can realize the
    purpose of writing the letter.
  • Relevance: Only relevant information should be included in business letter. Irrelevant and excessive information irritate the readers and create negative impression about the letter and its writer.

Features of Business Letter

  • Accuracy of facts: Business letter should convey accurate information to the reader. Inaccurate information is worse than no information at all.
  • Free form errors: A business letter should be free from all sorts of errors and mistakes like grammatical errors, misspelled words etc.
  • Brevity or conciseness: It is said that Brevity is the soul of wit. Accordingly it is regarded as the life blood of business letter. An informative but squeezed letter it the symbol of writer’s intellectuality. It saves the reader’s time and enhances his inclination towards the letter. So an informative but brief letter can easily achieve business goal.
  • Completeness: A business letter must contain all necessary information so that it can give a complete picture to the receiver. A business letter containing incomplete and partial information cannot serve any business purpose.
  • Courtesy: There is a proverb, Courtesy costs nothing but gains more. In writing business letter the writer should use courteous words to show honor to the readers. A courteous and politely written business letter can easily gain the sympathy of the readers.
  • Timeliness: In business it is commonly said that time is money. So letters should be written in due time. Untimely written business letters negatively affect business relationship and goodwill.
  • Neutrality: Acceptability of business letter depends on its neutrality and impartiality. So the writer should be natural and impartial in arranging information in the letters.

From the above discussion, it is clear that the efficacy and success of a business letter depend on several factors. So the writer should be careful enough to the factors mentioned above in writing letter.