I am looking for one word, preferably from corporate domain, which can describe specific form of communication. The form I am referring to (I used the word 'pyramid' here for lack of better word) can be described as follows: We have two teams A & B, and two employees AA & BB. Instead of employee AA communicating directly with employee BB; s/he informs the superior of the team A, and the superior of team A informs superior of team B; who in turn communicates back to BB.

Is there a word/term or a phrase for such style of communication?

  • chain-of-command; also top-down – Xanne Feb 28 '20 at 3:47
  • How about "intermediate" communication? Although intermediate doesn't have to be through a superior or a boss, any form of communications that are not direct would be intermediate. – Nicholas Mar 2 '20 at 4:26

There isn't a single term, though "silo-like," or any other conjugation of "silo," might fit. What you're describing is an information silo, exhaustively explored by Gillian Tett in "The Silo Effect."

An information silo ... is an insular management system in which one information system or subsystem is incapable of reciprocal operation with others that are, or should be, related.

In this case, AA and BB cannot directly communicate, but must go through their bosses, who should have better things to do that facilitate communication between their employees (if they don't, they don't need to be there at all). Any communication must travel to the top of one silo, transfer to another, then come back down, with a loss of efficiency and probably context. Information silos are considered in the West to be a very Bad Thing.

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