Difference Between Formal and Informal Communication with Chart

It is just since of this communication that the human civilization has actually developed beyond words. Thus, interaction has actually played a terrific function in the overall progress of the Human Race.

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We, as professionals or budding professionals require to deeply master the abilities of interaction. As we all might have learnt from our youth, there are 2 fundamental types of communication– Formal and Casual Communication. In our school days, we were taught letter composing which was classified into two kinds of letters– Formal Letters, which we used to address the Principal of our School or to the Editor of a specific Newspaper & Informal Letters, which we had to write to our Household and Friends.

The very first one, that’s Formal Interaction, we need to be mindful with our words. They require to be accurate, that is to state, compose just that much as is vital for the purpose of the Communication.

However, to deeply analyze the 2 and also to master our abilities in both these kinds of communications, let’s go through every one of them in information.

Difference Between Formal and Informal Communication

Content in this Post.

Distinction Between Official and Casual Communication

Formal Communication Informal Interaction
Official channel Un authorities channel
Planned and systematic Un planned and spontaneous
Part of company structure Cuts across formal relationships
Oriented towards goals and job of the enterprise Directed towards goals and require fulfillment of individual
Impersonal Personal and social
Steady and rigid Flexible and instable
Slow and structured Fast and un-structured


In the context of organizations, this means utilizing the formal channel of interaction. When it comes to Formal Interaction, there can be more two categories: Horizontal Interaction & Vertical Interaction.

HORIZONTAL COMMUNICATION: This implies interaction in the very same line, that’s, in the same level. In this form, position in an organization does not contribute. For Example, the communication held in between different interns of different departments, who are at the very same level in a company will be categorized as having a Horizontal Communication.

VERTICAL COMMUNICATION: In this kind of communication, details flows either upwards or downwards in a company. If the info is gathered at the lower level and then summarized and passed on the greater authorities, then it will be an Upward Vertical Communication.

In the opposite method, when data is passed from the higher authorities to the lower authorities, then it will be considered as Downward Form of Communication. Generally, orders or guidelines are passed on in this method. Consider, order for a particular dress code to be followed by the interns and this order was gone by the Board. So, it will flow from the Board to the Manager, then to the Associates and via them to the Interns.


As the name suggests, it is casual in nature and thus called Informal Interaction. A typical form of Informal Interaction is called the GRAPEVINE. Just like a grapevine spreads all around, this type of communication has no instructions or we can say, it flows in all instructions. It is not in the hands of the management to control this form of communication. Typically, reports and all are a part of this kind of communication. It usually takes place throughout the lunch breaks or tea time breaks.

All these forms of interaction are very important in any organization. It is necessary for everybody to understand and master these communication skills.

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