Effective Communication - Introduction

Communication is as old as human civilization. Man used to communicate with his fellow beings by means of sounds, signals, gestures when there was no language developed. Minus communication, human society could not have been as it is today. It is communication which has transformed mankind into the most developed rational and prosperous group on the earth.

What is Communication?

Communication is the activity of conveying information. The word communication has been derived from the Latin word ‘communis’, meaning to share. It basically involves a sender, a message and a receiver.


Communication is giving, receiving or exchanging ideas, data, information, signals or messages through appropriate media, enabling individuals or groups to persuade, to seek information, to give information or to express emotions.

Communication is usually a two-way process. It is not just giving information or signaling someone; it also involves the comprehension of the information or the signal by the receiver. When the act of giving information or sending message reaches the recipient and gets comprehended by him/her and the receiver sends feedback as desired by the sender, the process of communication is said to be complete. Communication, therefore, involves more than one person.

Communication is a continuous and dynamic process involving more than one person. It is a cyclic process denoting continuous flow of information. It essentially involves sender, message and recipient. The sender conceives ideas and encodes them into suitable medium (facts, figures, pictures), sends them through appropriate channel (email, phone, speech) to the recipient. The recipient decodes the message, understands it and encodes feedback and sends it to the sender. The process continues.

The Process of Communication

Communications refers to a set of techniques used for expressing ideas effectively and the technology of transmission of information by print or telecommunication media.

Communication is lexically meant to be the imparting or exchanging of information by speaking, writing or using some other medium.

It is the act of conveying intended meaning from one entity or group to another through the use of mutually understood signs or semiotic rules.

Definitions of Communication

Communication is defined by different authors as follows.

Ordway Tead

“Communication is a composite of (a) information given and received, (b) of a learning experience in which certain attitudes, knowledge and skills change, carrying with them alternations of behaviour, (c) of a listening effort by all involved, (d) of a sympathetic fresh examination of issues by communicator himself, (e) of a sensitive interaction of points of view leading to a higher level of shared understanding and common intention.”

G.G. Brown.

“Communication is transfer of information from one person to another, whether or not it elicits confidence. But the information transferred must be understandable to the receiver.”

Louis A. Allen

“Communication is the sum of all the things one person does when he wants to create understanding in the mind of another. It is a bridge of meaning. It involves a systematic and continuous process of telling, listening and understanding.”

Fred G. Meyer

“Communication is the intercourse by words, letters or messages”.

Keith Davis

“Communication is the process of passing information and understanding from one person to another.”

Importance of Communication in Society

It is communication that binds people and society together. It is considered as a natural process.

Society moves on human interactions and exchange of ideas, thoughts, and feelings. Relationship builds up through communication.

Lack of communication among the people in society will severely affect social cohesion and cohabitation. Progress and prosperity will come to a standstill if there is no effective communication. Communication is a factor of building and maintaining good relations. It enables people to understand each other.

Communication is as important and meaningful in individual life as in the society. Individuals make friends, builds up relationship and lead a true social life through communicating effectively with the fellow beings.

Importance of Communication in Business

Communication is the lifeline of a business organization. It is essential for realizing the objectives of an organization.

According to Millet, “Communication is blood stream of an organization”.

Chester I. Barnard viewed communication as the means by which people are linked together in an organization to achieve a common purpose.

The importance of communication can be assessed as follows −

  • Communication is needed to establish and disseminate the goals of a business organization.

  • The smooth and unperturbed functioning of an enterprise.

  • Communication helps the organization in arriving at vital decisions.

  • It also helps a lot in planning and coordination.

  • It is a basic tool for motivation and an increase in the morale of the employees largely depend upon the effectiveness of communication.

  • It helps a business as means of bringing about maximum production at the lowest level by maintaining good human relationship in the organization.

  • It works as an effective link between branches of the organization situated at great distances.

  • It helps in publicizing goods and services.

  • It reduces rumors and ensures smooth running of the organization as a whole.

Interpersonal Skills

Interpersonal skills refer to the ability to communicate or interact well with other people. In business lexicon, it means the set of abilities enabling a person to interact positively and work effectively with others.

It is the process by which people exchange information, feelings, and meaning through verbal and non-verbal messages: it is face-to-face communication.

In the absence of effective interpersonal communication among employees themselves, between the management and the employees, a business organization fails to ensure its smooth functioning and gradually runs away from realizing its objectives.

Interpersonal communication skills are necessary prerequisites for enhancing productivity and continuity of the workforce within an organization. Employees with good interpersonal skills are likely to be more productive and permanent than those with poor interpersonal skills because the former displays propensity to project a positive attitude and look for solutions to problems.

Components of Interpersonal Skills

The following are the different components of interpersonal skills −

Interpersonal Skills

Interpersonal communication is not just about what is actually said - the language used - but how it is said and the non-verbal messages sent through tone of voice, facial expressions, gestures and body language.


  • Communication is the activity of conveying information.

  • Communication is usually a two-way process. It is not just giving information or signaling someone; it also involves the comprehension of the information or the signal by the receiver.

  • Society moves on human interactions and exchange of ideas, thoughts, and feelings. Relationship builds up through communication.

  • According to Millet, “Communication is blood stream of an organization”.

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