Grapevine is bound to exist in an organization and it is a self proven fact that whatsoever be the effect of grapevine on the organization, management cannot do away with it. Management must accommodate itself with it get the following advantages and disadvantages of grapevine in an organization:
Advantages of Grapevine
1. Feedback: Grapevine provides managers much feedback about employees and their work experience thus increasing their understanding of their work-force and work situations. They can plan their actions to take decisions supportive to the employees.
2. Employee support: Mangers can seek the support of the employees through the grapevine. It helps interpret management to the workers, so that they may be more supportive. It especially helps translate management’s formal orders into employees’ language and in this. Way making up for the failure of the management in communication.
3. Warning signal: The Grapevine may also serve as advance warning signals for the management of an emerging crisis or indented action by workmen. Thus they gain by the information they received from the formal groups. They can think about the problem and its ways out well in advance in order to tackle the problem efficiently.
4. Understanding reaction: It is a good means to know the reaction of people on contemplated policies and actions. Sometimes management takes the advantage of the situation by feeding the message on the grapevine and to get the reaction of people about the policies or decisions before they ate implemented.
If the reaction is positive, it may announce it soon or if the reaction is not positive or it is negative or passive necessary adjustments, amendments or correction may be done and in this way support of employees can be gained. In such cases, management does not wish to carry the informality through formal means.
5. Quick solution: Whenever a message is to be used quickly managers may get it processed on grapevine which may spread it like a jungle fire.
6. Consequences of steps: The groups and persons may be persuaded not to insist on certain demands and they may be told informally about the consequences of steps proposed to be taken by the management.
7. Useful for Trade Unions: It is useful for trade unions. They use the grapevine as an important channel of communication for spreading exciting news and provoking members for violent activities.
Disadvantages of Grapevine
Though grapevine is an important channel of communication for the management as well as for the workers, both sometimes, it is injurious to the health of both workers and organizations. Following are examples for it:
1. High speed: The one important feature of the grapevine is its fast speed. Due to this characteristic, sometimes, information is misheard or misinterpreted which helps in spreading rumors and because the management is unable to stop undesirable rumors due to its fast speed, it may lead to confrontation.
2. Leakage: The leakage of some important confidential message may prove fatal to the organization or to the position holder. Leakage of policy matters or actions against an employee may be examples of such types.
Related content of Informal Organization:
- Nature of Informal Organization
- Advantages of Informal Organization
- Difference between Formal and Informal Organization
- Barriers to Informal Organization
- How to Overcome Barriers of Informal Organization?
- What is the Meaning of Grapevine?
- Basic Grapevine Pattern of Organization
- Features of Grapevine in an Organization
- What does mean by Rumor in Organizations?
- How to Control Rumor in Organizations?