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Downward and upward communication

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What do you mean by downward and upward communication? Does downward communication mean communicating with those who are below you in the company's hierarchy, while upward communication is communicating with those higher than you in the company's hierarchy?

Also, under which circumstances (in project management) are these terms used?
asked 7 years ago by anonymous

1 Answer

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What you're saying is right, but let me explain that there 4 types of communication channels:

- Upward communications: Which means when the project manager communicates with those above him, or when the team members communicate with the project manager (these are just examples). Upward communication usually consists of reporting and problem escalation.

- Downward communication: This means when the project manager communicates with team members or when the executive stakeholders communicate with the project manager. Downward communication consists of giving feedback, sending requirements, asking for changes, etc...

- Horizontal communication: This means when the team members communicate with each other or when the project manager communicates with his peers. An example of horizontal communication is a project manager asking for advice from another project manager.

- External communication: This means when the project manager, for example, communicates with external stakeholders. External stakeholders may be clients or vendors/suppliers. An example of external communication is a project manager asking for a quote from one of his suppliers.

An excellent resource on the subject is this one: http://www.nationalforum.com/Electronic%20Journal%20Volumes/Lunenburg,%20Fred%20C,%20Formal%20Comm%20Channels%20FOCUS%20V4%20N1%202010.pdf
answered 7 years ago by MaplePM (46,940 points)

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