HR Glossary  >   Informal Communication

Informal Communication

What is Informal Communication?

Informal communication is the natural, friendly and casual communication among the coworkers in the company. It doesn’t follow any defined communication structure or hierarchical order but is expressed based on the social relationship built among the people in the organization.

Example of informal communication at the workplace:

  • Imagine a company that has 50 employees.
  • The tea break started, and some employees went to the canteen.
  • Ten of the employees sat together and discussed a new movie release.
  • The communication which the 10 employees have with each other is termed informal communication.

Informal communication is essential for organizations because it improves the employees’ morale, builds strong relations, and encourages their feeling of belonging among their coworkers and the company. With the help of the below image, you can clearly understand the difference between formal and informal communication.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the common types of informal communication?

Informal communication can be conveyed in any form. However, there are mainly four types of informal communication.

  • Single strand
  • Gossip chain
  • Probability chain
  • Cluster chain

What are the advantages of informal communication?

Informal communication gives an opportunity to give a personal view of the employees' needs and discussions. Employees can have a better chance to raise their concerns about work-related issues. Due to this, the employees can be in a co-ordinal environment.

What are the demerits of informal communication?

The lack of secrecy due to no formal record of communication leads to a more significant loss to the organization. It wastes a lot of time as sometimes informal communication may provide only half of the information, which causes conflicts. On the other hand, it leads to a lack of innovative ideas and creativity decreases.

What are the features of informal communication?

Informal communication is not formal in nature but is often practiced. Many times it can take the form of gossip and lead to consequences. There is no proper structure to informal communication, which causes a lack of complete information.

How does informal communication occur?

Informal communication is a kind of communication that doesn’t occur in any kind of formal structure or official manner. It can be conveyed in any manner, such as it can be spoken, written, or conveyed by body language. It can be personal conversation or gossip, which is not practiced in any official manner.

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