The word communication originates from the Latin word ‘Communis’, which means common. It implies sharing of information. According to W. H. Newman, “communication is an exchange of facts, ideas, opinions or emotions by two or more persons”. Communication involves both sending and receiving messages. It takes up 70% of our working time in one form or another, viz. speaking, listening, reading or writing. The intention of communication is to convey our thoughts, ideas or feelings to others clearly and without any misunderstanding. If what you intend to convey is not interpreted by others in the way you desire, it results in a failure of communication, thus creating barriers, which interfere with the very purpose of communication. This affects your interpersonal relationships, both with family and friends and with colleagues.

Effective Communication is a vital skill which has several advantages. It is the basic reason for success in different fields of life, both in personal relationships and careers. Leaders in various fields such as industry, business, politics, administration, cinema, theatre, sports, etc. possess excellent communication skills and are great speakers too.

Effective Communication is central to the success of any organization. Various media of mass communication are used by organizations to create and sustain contacts with various stakeholders including their employees, clients, vendors, shareholders and the general community. For communication to be effective, a few basic principles must be followed:

Clarity: When an idea is to be conveyed, either in writing or by speaking, be very clear about your purpose in communicating with your target audience. If the purpose is not clear, the audience will be confused.

Consistency: The message must be consistent with the goals and policies of the organization. If the sender’s statement differs from his action, the receiver of the message will not act as per the sender’s intention.

Completeness and sufficiency: The message must be complete and adequate for the receiver to take appropriate action.

Brevity: The communication should be brief and to the point.

Channel: A channel of communication suitable to the content should be used. E.g.: Short, simple messages can be transmitted through oral communication; and long messages in writing.

Timing: The time factor should be considered while sending a message. A message sent at an inappropriate time may lead to failure in obtaining expected results.

Logical: The message should relate to the topic and there should be a logical flow in the message.

Adaptability: The communicator must be able to adapt to the changing environment and suitably adjust to new techniques of communication systems.

Feedback: Communication is a two–way process and therefore the receiver should have an opportunity to evaluate the message and give his feedback.

 Politeness: The communication should be polite and friendly in its tone and tenor.

Types of Communication:

· Written: Process of writing should follow the points below:

i) Make an outline of the message.
ii) Make a rough draft.
iii) Organize your ideas in the correct, logical sequence.
iv) Make the message clear, consistent and brief, by deleting unessential details.
v) Edit the message before sending it.

· Oral: This consists of
i) One-to-one (face-to-face) conversation
ii) Speech
iii) Telephonic conversation
iv) Interview
v) Group Discussion
vi) Meeting

· Non verbal: Non verbal may be either visual or audio

Non verbal communication can be divided into

Body Language
ü Facial expressions are used to express feelings or emotions
ü Postures convey particular expressions
ü Gestures are used for more effective communication.
Note: The interpretation of gestures varies from culture to culture.
ü Dress and physical appearance play a major role in knowing about the speaker.
ü Eye contact is one of the most crucial factors in making the communication more effective. The speaker gets a feedback with eye contact as the audience becomes alert.
ü Silence (pause in speech) is sometimes used to make a better impact than is conveyed by continuous speech.

Visual communication: Examples are

i) Graphs and charts, maps, tables, etc.
ii) Signals and signboards
iii) Posters
iv) Audio visuals

Barriers in Communication:

a) Vague Communication – Communication not clear and precise
b) Transmission errors and wrong interpretation while conveying the message from one to another in oral as well as written communication
c) Lack of attention to details – Not reading the minutes of a meeting or a notice properly
d) Premature judgement of a message by the receiver leads to a barrier.
e) Language barriers especially with listeners coming from different states, countries and cultures

Effective Communication is imperative for an organization to succeed in its objective. Communication skills are the most powerful aspects to possess in a skill set of the employees of the organization. In this fast-paced world, it is crucial to have excellent communication skills. It is well and truly said that being able to communicate effectively is the most essential of all life skills.

Anup Y. Attavar
Connecting Indians
B.E. Mech. (COEP, Pune); P.G.D. – International Trade (IIFT, New Delhi)
Alumnus – Loyola High School, Pune (India)
Special Correspondent – Dwarka Parichay (Western India)
Independent Statement of Purpose (SOP) Counsellor & Content Writer
Editor – ‘World Famous Indian Scientists’; Writer – Company Profiles & Articles
Email: anup.attavar@gmail.com url: www.anupattavar.in