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One-way and two-way communication

two-way.pngA one-way communication is where there is no facility and/or expectation of a reply or feedback. An advertisement or notice on a board is an example. Its advantages are that is simple, quick and cheap. However, it allows no clarification or opportunity to correct inaccuracies and this may cause frustration in the receiver. It is often associated with authoritarian leadership and downward channels of communication.

Two-way communication is more time-consuming because the receiver has the opportunity to feedback and to question what has been said or written. The receiver is invited to contribute to the process so this kind of communication is often associated with democratic forms of leadership. If the message is complex, two-way communication is far more effective, and probably accurate, than one-way communication.