Response to post on Horizontal Communications.

Below is a discussion on “What is horizontal communications”. Please respond to discussion with a two to three paragraph response.

CH.6 “Communicating in a Noisy World”, p. 215

Horizontal Communications are a direction of formal communication that involves people reaching out across departmental lines to people at the same level but in charge of different functions in order to accomplish given tasks. Typically carried out by discussions or formal meetings, these communications are essential for efficient organizational functioning. The need for channels of communication to be open and free flowing are vital to effectively coordinating functions between departments. Without it, there would be almost no way to coordinate multi-departmental efforts toward a common purpose.

In my field of professional baseball, nothing is ever decided without horizontal communication between scouting and player development. The goal of all the baseball operations departments is to field a successful Major League team while stockpiling depth throughout the minor league system. That requires constant back and forth between the staff in both departments. Regular discussions happen throughout a baseball season regarding potential player acquisition to fill an area of organizational need to make sure we are deep at all positions on the field. These discussions take place through collective gatherings at a specified location, or through phone and electronic means to discuss the progress of our internal prospect options. Being updated on areas where we lack depth is vital for giving scouts a better idea of what type of player we should or shouldn’t target during our coverage. For example, in just a matter of days, all the members of the above-mentioned departments will gather for meetings at our Spring Training site in Florida to discuss the upcoming season and where we are talent-wise to be able to get us through a season successfully.

Communications between two employees who report to the same manager is also an example of horizontal communication. I regularly have discussions with fellow scouts, and in some cases even ones that work for other organizations. The objective is to gather player information, or “player dope”, and to brainstorm different scenarios in which those players can be acquired. I can then relay that information up to my Pro Director, who can then pass along the idea to the executives in the front office and see if there is a potential fit for the organization.

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