Communication is the process of sending and receiving messages through verbal or nonverbal means, including speech, or oral communication; writing and graphical representations (such as infographics, maps, and charts); and signs, signals, and behavior.
Effective Communication is a communication between two or more persons wherein the intended message is successfully delivered, received and understood.
The communication is said to be effective when all the parties (sender and receiver) in the communication, assign similar meanings to the message and listen carefully to what all have been said and make the sender feel heard and understood.
The effective communication includes not just the way you use the words but also covers several other skills such as, non-verbal communication, ability to understand your own emotions as well as those of the other person with whom you are communicating with, through active listening.
Effective communication is when the message conveyed by the sender is understood by the receiver in exactly the same way as it was intended. This is achieved by actively listening to what is being communicated, not just hearing the sender.
Hearing is simply the act of perceiving sound by the ear. If you are not hearing-impaired, hearing simply happens. Listening, however, is something you consciously choose to do.
Listening requires concentration so that your brain processes meaning of words and sentences. Listening leads to learning. Listening means “to pay attention to sound; to hear something with thoughtful attention; and to give consideration.” Most people tend to be “hard of listening” rather than “hard of hearing.”
Communication is not complete without effective listening. An attentive listener stimulates better speaking by the speaker. A good listener learns more than an indifferent listener. A good listener can restructure vague speaking in a way that produces clearer meaning. A good listener learns to detect prejudices, assumptions and attitudes.
The next step involves sensing and filtering of heard sounds. The heard message is categorized as wanted or unwanted. The unwanted message is discarded. The sense of judgement of the individual comes into play, that is, the filtering process is subjective and a person chooses to retain what makes sense to him. This step is more harmful than help when communicating within personal relationships. Everything expressed by someone you love should be dealt with especially if you are attempting to repair a situation.
The listener understands what the speaker has tried to convey. This activity can be described as absorbing, grasping or assimilating. The listener uses their knowledge, experience, perception and cognitive power to comprehend what is being communicated. Comprehension includes the correct association of meanings with word symbols, the selection of the correct meaning suggested by the context, the organization and retention of meanings, the ability to reason one’s way through smaller ideas segments, and the ability to grasp, the meaning of a larger unitary idea.
If you do not comprehend the situation, you need to take some time and ask for clarity. This is why many relationships fail. Miscommunication will destroy relationships quicker than no communication.
Listen for main ideas. The main ideas are the most important points the speaker wants to get across. They may be mentioned at the start or end of a talk, and repeated a number of times. Pay special attention to statements that begin with phrases such as “My point is…” or “The thing to remember is…” Ask questions. If you are not sure you understood what the speaker has said, just ask..
Give feedback. Sit up straight and look directly at the speaker. Now and then, nod to show that you understand. At appropriate points you may also smile, frown, laugh, or be silent. These are all ways to let the speaker know that you are really listening. Remember, you listen with your face as well as your ears!
Let the speaker finish before you begin to talk. Speakers appreciate having the chance to say everything they would like to say without being interrupted. When you interrupt, it looks like you aren’t listening, even if you really are. Let yourself finish listening before you begin to speak! You can’t really listen if you are busy thinking about what you want to say next.
If you find yourself not being able to keep up this the conversation because the speaker is saying too much to actively process, set some ground rules before the conversation. Request that a limited number of points are made at a time so you can listen and respond effectively.
“Okay!”,”Yeah Right!” and “Whatever You Say!” isn’t an effective communication exchange
The process of communication can never be completed, if the response of the receiver is missing. It enables the communicator of a message to know whether the message has been received and interpreted in the same manner as directed.
“Okay!”,”Yeah Right!” and “Whatever You Say!” aren’t effective communication exchanges.