What is Communication?

Published May 28, 2014 by Mayrbear's Lair

communicate

Communication is a part of every aspect of our life. From the time we are born until the end of our lives, communication shapes what and how we learn, how we connect with others, and how we make our livelihood. Individuals that have difficulty communicating for whatever the reason, will find themselves at a disadvantage. On the other hand, those who are gifted and possess high levels of communication skills, and more than likely to achieve greater levels of success in the workplace as well as in their personal lives.

Baack (2012) defines communication as the transmission, receipt, and the processing of information we receive. He also postulates that this information must consist of any item that elicits meaning. Communication, therefore, consists of the transfer of data with meaning from one individual or group to others. In addition, it can be transmitted in a variety of forms including: (a) terms or words, (b) symbols, (c) figures or numbers, (d) a single concept, or (e) a set of concepts combined. The recipient, on the other hand, must comprehend them for any of these concepts to make sense (Baack, 2012). For example, most people younger than 25 years of age who grew up in the United States understand the following combination of letters: OMG. A senior citizen who does not use computers or smart phones on the other hand, most likely does not have a clue what that combination of letters means.

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In the business arena, a great deal of information is transmitted on a daily basis. Some is acknowledged and has meaning, while some of it is just jibber jabber. One thing is for sure, people who can frame information in such a way that the intended recipient understands the true meaning, are the better communicators. In short, the communication process is important because if information is not transmitted correctly, it can be misinterpreted and present challenges beyond repair.

In my article, “Breaching Communication Barriers” (2013), I revealed that employment recruiters will intentionally seek out potential leaders for executive positions with effective communication skills because they know these are the kind of leaders that are top performers. In other words, they specifically seek these candidates because they are cognizant that prospects that possess high levels of communication skills are in a better position to help the organization and its staff members reach their highest potential. Plus, successful communicators are better at building strong teams because they can transmit instructions more effectively in a way that motivates and inspires employees to perform at higher levels, rather than offending or alienating them (Berry, 2013).

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On Friday’s post we will take a closer look at the various levels of organizational communication including: (a) interpersonal communication that takes place between individuals or one individual with a small group of people; and (b) communication within the organization itself to better comprehend the role it plays in achieving organizational goals.

Until then … keep those channels of communication open and stay organized!

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With the gift of listening comes the gift of healing. – Catherine de Hueck Doherty

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References:

Baack, D. (2012). Management Communication. San Diego, CA, USA: Bridgepoint Education.

Berry, M. A. (2013). Breaching Communication Barriers (Vol. 2). (C. Angela, Ed.) Henderson, NV: Kindle Direct Publishing.

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