Formal communication can be considered as communication efforts that are “dressed up” to fit customary rules and ceremony For example, in a written letter, the formal communication style will demand that the layout of the piece of written communication follow a specific format that includes the date, header, salutation, body of the letter, close, signature lines and any indicators of enclosures all placed neatly upon company letterhead or personal stationery. By contrast, an informal piece of written communication can be as simple as a jotted note to a friend on a torn slip of paper Formal communications are mostly written, although they may now also include formal presentations that are on computer disk, video tape or DVDs, MP3 presentations and other similar electronic reproductions of written communications. Other forms of formal communications include newsletters, legal advisories, invitations, awards, and letters of congratulations. Non-written formal communication devices are in-person communications in the forms of departmental meetings, telephone calls, conferences and special interviews. Some publications that are devoted to a special purpose, such as a company’s annual report, are formal communications. There is a non-verbal component to formal communication as well. The style and manners of the presenter dictate the formalness of a meeting, and this can be immediately seen at the time of introduction of a speaker. Some elements of non-verbal formal communication include maintaining a certain distance from others, standing above the crowd, speaking in formal tones and using formal means of address to others, such as “Mister” or “Doctor” when calling upon others. Colloquialisms, which are freely used in informal communication, are not present in formal communications. Proper English or another language is spoken. Formal communications will follow a chain of command in the flow of the communication, either upwards to or down from...
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