In a 1998 survey of 480 companies and public organizations by the National Association of Colleges and Employers, communication abilities are ranked number one among personal qualities of college graduates sought by employers. Work experience and motivation are second and third. 1Clearly, one of the reasons why communication skills are so important is that these skills are essential for facilitating organizational change. A less obvious reason why good communicators are essential is that these individuals understand how to design and enhance the communication systems within an organization so that information flows more effectively.
For example, Rob Goffee and Gareth Jones argue that effective leaders “communicate with care.” Communicating with care means that the leaders choose their channels of communication strategically, tailor their message to the aims of the change initiative, authentically disclose intimate details when appropriate, and are very sensitive to the pace and timing of their communications. 2Clearly, any employee with this subtle set of skills is a rare and valuable human resource, and the organization does well to enhance this skill set in as many individuals as possible, since their skill can be leveraged into improved communication systems for the entire organization.