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Applying Oral Communication Skills in Your Career and Everyday Life

Deanna Dannels, associate dean of academic affairs in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences and a professor in the Department of Communications, discusses the importance of oral communication skills for NC State students and graduates.

Deanna Dannels, associate dean of academic affairs for the College of Humanities and Social Sciences and a professor in the Department of Communication

By Samantha Rich, director of DASA Assessment 

This article is part of a series on NC State’s Pack Proficiencies : the five competency areas in which all NC State undergraduates should develop before they graduate: written communication, oral communication, quantitative literacy, critical thinking, and creative thinking. 

Oral communication is ubiquitous in our everyday lives: we communicate with classmates and colleagues on Zoom calls, we demonstrate our content knowledge and expertise in oral presentations, and we communicate our career goals to potential employers in job interviews. Outside of the classroom and workplace, we’re chatting with our Lyft driver, calling in our take-out orders, and enjoying casual conversations with friends and family. NC State recognizes that oral communication is a skill that should be practiced and developed throughout your undergraduate career, and that’s why oral communication is one of our Pack Proficiencies . 

NC State faculty and staff provide students opportunities to develop oral communication skills in courses, within student organizations, through undergraduate research, and through myriad events and activities across campus. In the interview below, Deanna Dannels, associate dean of academic affairs in the College of Humanities and Social Sciences and professor in the Department of Communication, describes how students engage with oral communication in their everyday lives and why it is important that students develop proficiency in this area. Interview excerpts are edited for brevity and clarity.

Question: What does it mean to be proficient in oral communication?

Deanna Dannels: Oral communication really involves a number of things: it involves clearly expressing your ideas, building and evidencing a sound argument using the evidence necessary to justify a position, and adapting your argument to a variety of different audiences. 

Question: Why is it important for students to develop their oral communication skills?

Deanna Dannels: Students communicate every day — from the moment they wake up to the moment they go to sleep. Students communicate with their roommates; they communicate with their faculty; they communicate with their friends. But just because you do it every day doesn’t mean that you do it well. One of the benefits of developing oral communication skills is that students can develop competency in something that is very pervasive in their lives — to reflect on it, to practice it, to get feedback on it so that they can become better at accomplishing their goals.

You need to know how to communicate to be a person who can engage in multiple contexts. Our world is rapidly becoming more interdisciplinary, more multi-modal and more multi-contextual. In order to navigate those contexts, students need to be able to show a proficiency in oral communication. Very few of our students will graduate and sit in an office on their own without interacting with other people; it’s just not the way the workplace is and it’s not the way our community is. A well-rounded person really needs to be able to have those communication competencies in order to be a good citizen, be a good professional, and be a good person in general.

Question: How can students develop their oral communication skills at NC State?

Deanna Dannels: The obvious answer is to take a communication class. Avail yourself of your opportunity to use your fee electives to take a communication class. That said, within your discipline there is an opportunity to either formally or informally practice oral communication skills. You may have a presentation assignment or group work – these are opportunities to hone and refine your skills to not only learn the content but to practice oral communication.

Even if you’re not in courses that provide formal oral presentation assignments, go participate in a rally, go participate in a community event, go watch speakers we bring to campus, and start thinking about what makes them effective as a communicator. What do you like? What could you see yourself doing? Engage in that critical analysis of oral communication skills

Question: How will students engage in oral communication after graduation?

Deanna Dannels: After graduation, in whatever pathway a student chooses, they’re going to have to put a resume out, they’re going to have to inquire about opportunities, and all of those things require oral communication. It may not be face-to-face, it may be technologically mediated or driven, but still you’re using oral communication competencies to find your pathway. Then being successful depends on your ability to communicate well. It also depends on your ability to determine where things need to change and how you can use your voice to make those changes.

I think not only is communication after graduation part of the recipe for success; it’s part of the recipe for innovation, for change and for action in organizations and in our communities. Students with oral communication competencies can be activists in this way and can create workplaces that are more ethical and communities that are more inclusive. Oral communication provides you opportunity and the skills necessary to do that.

To learn more about the Pack Proficiencies and how they are assessed, visit go.ncsu.edu/PackProficiencies .

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Importance of Oral Communication

Importance of Oral Communication

Embark on a journey to understand the crucial role of oral communication in shaping our interactions and relationships. This guide provides an in-depth look at effective communication strategies, enriched with practical oral communication examples . From professional discussions to personal dialogues, learn how to harness the power of spoken words for impactful and meaningful connections. Our guide is tailored to equip you with the skills necessary for mastering the art of oral communication in various life scenarios.

What is the Importance of Oral Communication?

Oral communication is the process of exchanging information and ideas through speaking. It is a key aspect of human interaction, essential for understanding and being understood in both personal and professional contexts. This form of communication is valued for its immediacy and effectiveness. What is Oral Communication involves not just speaking, but also active listening and interpreting nonverbal cues. It’s a dynamic skill that encompasses various elements such as tone, clarity, and confidence. Understanding the importance of oral communication helps in various scenarios, from delivering a presentation ( oral communication examples ) to engaging in a casual conversation. Mastering this skill leads to better relationships, clearer information dissemination, and more effective leadership in the workplace.

Importance of Oral Communication in Business

importance of oral communication in business

In the business world, the importance of oral communication cannot be overstated. Effective oral communication skills are critical for successful business operations. They facilitate clear and efficient exchange of ideas, making it easier for teams to collaborate, solve problems, and make decisions. In business, oral communication is often the cornerstone of client relations, negotiations, and team building. Good communicators can articulate their ideas clearly, persuade others, and understand verbal feedback, which is essential in a dynamic business environment.

Effective oral communication in business also enhances leadership. Leaders who communicate well can inspire and motivate their teams, creating a productive and positive workplace. In sales and customer service, oral communication skills are vital for explaining products, addressing customer concerns, and building lasting relationships. Furthermore, oral communication is crucial in crisis management, where timely and clear communication can mitigate issues more effectively.

Business meetings, presentations, and negotiations all rely heavily on oral communication. Oral communication examples in business include pitching a new idea to investors, discussing strategies in meetings, and providing feedback during performance reviews. These scenarios underscore the significance of being articulate, concise, and clear in conveying messages.

In summary, the importance of oral communication in business lies in its ability to streamline processes, foster strong relationships, and drive business growth. It is a skill that, when mastered, can significantly impact a company’s success.

Importance of Oral Communication Essay

An essay on the importance of oral communication delves into the various facets of this essential skill. Such essays typically explore how oral communication impacts individual success and relationships. They examine the role of effective communication in personal growth, professional development, and the maintenance of social bonds. An essay on this topic might include oral communication examples such as a successful public speech, an effective classroom discussion, or a productive business meeting.

The essay can discuss the advantages of oral communication, such as immediate feedback, the ability to adjust the message in real-time, and the conveyance of emotion and tone. It might also explore challenges, such as overcoming barriers in cross-cultural communication or dealing with speech anxiety.

Furthermore, an importance of oral communication essay can compare oral communication with written communication, highlighting how each has its unique strengths and contexts where one might be more appropriate than the other. Essays may also delve into the components that make up effective oral communication, such as clarity, conciseness, empathy, active listening, and the use of nonverbal cues.

Lastly, such essays often emphasize the development of oral communication skills, outlining ways individuals can improve their speaking and listening abilities. This aspect is particularly relevant in an educational setting, where developing strong oral communication skills can significantly impact students’ academic and future career success.

Overall, an essay on the importance of oral communication provides comprehensive insights into how this skill affects various areas of life, emphasizing its significance in personal and professional contexts.

Importance of Oral Communication & Written Communication

importance of oral communication written communication

The importance of oral communication and written communication lies in their complementary roles in conveying information and ideas effectively. Oral communication, involving speaking and listening, offers immediacy and personal interaction. It allows for immediate feedback and adjustment of the message based on the listener’s responses. In contexts like meetings, negotiations, or casual conversations, the ability to communicate orally is invaluable. Oral communication examples include delivering a speech, participating in a debate, or engaging in dialogue.

Written communication, on the other hand, provides a permanent record and is essential for documenting and sharing complex information. It allows for careful structuring and revision of content, making it ideal for detailed explanations or legal documentation. Written communication is crucial in business for contracts, emails, reports, and more.

Both forms have their unique strengths and are important in different situations. Oral communication is key for interpersonal interactions and immediate problem-solving, while written communication is essential for maintaining records and conveying detailed information. Understanding when and how to use each form effectively is a critical communication skill.

Why are Oral Communication Skills Important?

Oral communication skills are important for several reasons. They are fundamental to forming and maintaining personal and professional relationships. Effective oral communication enables individuals to express their thoughts and emotions clearly and persuasively. It is crucial in settings like education, where teachers must communicate information to students, and in business, where clarity in communication can define the success of negotiations and collaborations.

Good oral communication skills also enhance an individual’s ability to listen, interpret, and respond appropriately to others, fostering mutual understanding and respect. This is vital in multicultural environments, where clear communication can bridge cultural differences.

Additionally, strong oral communication skills are often associated with leadership and influence. Leaders who communicate effectively can inspire and motivate their teams, articulate their vision, and manage conflicts and crises efficiently.

In summary, oral communication skills are essential for effective interpersonal interactions, successful professional relationships, and personal growth. They empower individuals to convey their messages confidently and clearly, making them indispensable in virtually every aspect of life.

Moreover, the significance of oral communication extends beyond personal and professional realms, contributing to societal advancement. Effective communication is the cornerstone of leadership and governance, influencing decision-making processes and public opinion. Leaders and public figures must master this art to inspire and lead effectively??. Educational platforms such as Harvard University’s Program on Negotiation provide insightful resources on negotiation and communication, crucial for leaders and professionals in all fields.

In conclusion, the importance of oral communication cannot be overstated. It is essential for effective interpersonal relationships, professional success, and personal growth. This guide has provided insights, examples, and practical tips to enhance your oral communication skills. Remember, mastering these skills is a continuous journey, but with practice and awareness, anyone can become an effective communicator.

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Oral Communication: Examples, Importance, Types & Features

Table of Contents

Among the various forms of communication, oral communication stands out as a fundamental and powerful tool. In this guide, we will explore its definition, importance, and various forms, while providing practical tips, examples, and strategies to enhance your oral communication skills.

Definition of oral communication

“Oral communication is the process of sharing information and creating meaning through the use of spoken language, including both formal and informal interactions.” Author: Julia T. Wood Reference: Wood, J. T. (2012). Interpersonal communication: Everyday encounters. Cengage Learning.

What is oral communication? 

The process of exchanging information, thoughts, and ideas through spoken words is commonly referred to as oral communication. It is a fundamental form of human communication that allows individuals to interact, express themselves, and convey messages directly to others using speech.

Oral communication covers various aspects, including speaking, listening, and understanding. It is a dynamic process involving both verbal and nonverbal cues such as tone of voice, facial expressions, gestures, and body language.

Nature of oral communication 

The nature of oral communication is essentially dynamic and interactive. Unlike written communication, which relies on written words, oral communication involves direct interaction between individuals through spoken words. It allows for real-time exchanges, immediate feedback, and the ability to respond to the needs of the situation and audience.

Alongside spoken words, oral communication incorporates nonverbal cues, including facial expressions, body language, and tone of voice.  These cues can greatly enhance the message being conveyed. 

Purpose of oral communication

Oral communication aims to effectively convey information through clear and concise vocal words. It fosters interaction, and relationship building, and facilitates collaboration among individuals.

Effective oral communication skills are vital in personal, and professional settings as they enable individuals to express themselves, listen actively, and respond appropriately to the needs of others.

Characteristics of oral communication 

There are several key characteristics of oral communication that shape how it is used and understood. Understanding these characteristics is essential for developing effective oral communication skills and successfully navigating interpersonal interactions in various settings. These characteristics include:

1/ Dynamic and interactive: Oral communication involves a two-way exchange of information between a speaker and a listener. It is an interactive process that allows instant feedback and clarification.

2/ Verbal and nonverbal cues: Oral communication includes the use of spoken words as well as nonverbal cues like facial expressions, tone of voice, and body language.

3/ Less formal: Oral communication is often less formal than written communication and may involve informal language. However, the level of formality can vary depending on the context of the communication.

4/ Spoken Words: Oral communication relies on spoken words as the primary medium of conveying messages. It involves the use of language, including vocabulary, grammar, and pronunciation, to express thoughts and ideas. 

5/ Contextual and Situational: Oral communication is highly dependent on the context and situation in which it takes place. Factors such as the audience, purpose, and cultural background influence the language, tone, and style used by the speaker. 

Further Reading: What are the characteristics of oral communication

Types of oral communication 

Oral communication can be categorized into several types based on different contexts and purposes. Each type has its own specific characteristics and purposes, and being proficient in each type of oral communication is crucial for effective interpersonal interactions. Here are some common types of oral communication:

List-of-Six-common-types-of-oral-communication

1/ Group Discussions: Group discussions involve multiple participants engaging in an exchange of ideas, opinions, and perspectives on a specific topic. This type of oral communication enhances collaboration, problem-solving, and decision-making within a team.

2/ Public Speaking: This type of communication involves one individual speaking to a large group of people. Public speaking is often used for informative or persuasive purposes, such as delivering a keynote speech or presenting a proposal.

3/ Interviewing: This type of communication involves one individual asking questions of another individual. Interviews are often used in job interviews, media interviews, and research interviews.

4/ Video Conferencing: This form of communication is similar to face-to-face communication but takes place over video conferencing software. Video conferencing proves beneficial for remote teams and individuals unable to meet in private.

5/ Telephonic Communication: This type of communication involves two or more individuals communicating over the phone. Telephonic communication is useful for situations where face-to-face communication is not possible or practical, such as in long-distance relationships or business negotiations.

6/ Informal Conversations: Informal conversations occur when individuals engage in casual and Unplanned discussions with each other. Informal conversations occur in everyday settings such as social gatherings, family interactions, and friendly conversations.

Examples of oral communication 

Examples of oral communication channels 

  • Oral Reports
  • Interpersonal Conversations
  • Speeches and Lectures
  • Customer Service Calls
  • Team Huddles
  • Radio Broadcasting

Oral communication tools examples 

  • Voice Assistants: Virtual assistants activated by voice commands, such as Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, offer convenient and hands-free interaction.
  • Voice Recorders: Portable voice recorders or smartphone voice recording apps.
  • Video Conferencing Tools: Video conferencing platforms like Zoom or Google Meet.
A demonstration of how we use Google Meet for day-to-day oral communication for remote working.
  • VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol): VoIP services, such as Skype, or Nextiva.
  • Telephones: Traditional landline phones and mobile phones.

Elements of oral communication 

1/ Speaker: The speaker is the individual or source who initiates and delivers the oral message. They are responsible for formulating their thoughts, organizing the message, and selecting appropriate language and delivery style to effectively communicate their ideas to the listener(s).

2/ Message: The message refers to the content and information intended by the speaker for communication. It combines both verbal and nonverbal components, such as words, tone of voice, facial expressions, gestures, and body language.

3/ Listener: The listener is the recipient of the oral communication. They receive process, and interpret the speaker’s message. 

4/ Feedback: Feedback is the response given by the listener(s) to the message conveyed by the speaker. It can be verbal or nonverbal and helps the speaker understand the effectiveness of their communication.

5/ Channel: The channel refers to the medium or mode of communication used to transmit the oral message. It can include face-to-face conversations, telephone calls, video conferences, presentations, and more.

6/ Context: The context includes the environment in which oral communication occurs. It includes factors like physical location, cultural norms, social dynamics, and the topic of communication.

7/ Noise: Noise encompasses any form of interference or barriers that affects the smooth flow of effective communication . It can be external noise like distractions or internal noise like language barriers .

8/ Purpose: The purpose of oral communication is the objective or intention behind the communication.

What are oral communication skills? 

Oral communication skills refer to the abilities and competencies that enable individuals to effectively convey their ideas, thoughts, and messages through spoken words.

These skills involve using language, tone of voice, body language, and other forms of nonverbal communication to engage listeners and convey messages clearly and persuasively.

1/ Active Listening skills: Active listening is a crucial skill in oral communication. It involves fully focusing on and understanding the speaker’s message, responding appropriately, and providing feedback or clarification when necessary. 

2/ Presentation Skills: Presentation skills involve effectively delivering information to an audience in a well-organized manner. These skills encompass organizing content, using visual aids effectively, maintaining audience engagement, and delivering a confident and impactful presentation.

3/ Flexibility and Adaptability skills: Being flexible and adaptable in oral communication allows individuals to adjust their message, language, and approach based on the needs and preferences of the audience. It involves being open to different communication styles, cultural differences, and unexpected changes in the communication context.

4/ Conversation Skills: Conversation skills refer to the ability to engage in meaningful and productive conversations with others. This involves initiating and maintaining conversations and showing interest in others’ contributions.

5/ Discussion Skills : It involves participating in structured group discussions. It involves contributing ideas, listening to others, and providing feedback or responses. Effective discussion skills can help facilitate group decision-making, resolve conflicts, and promote collaboration and teamwork.

6/ Telephonic Communication Skills : Telephonic skills involve the ability to communicate effectively over the telephone. It includes speaking clearly and audibly, using appropriate language and tone, and being attentive to the listener’s needs and concerns.

Techniques for improving oral communication skills 

  • Practice Active Listening: Actively listening to others is a fundamental aspect of effective oral communication. Practice focusing your attention on the speaker, avoiding distractions can help you improve your oral communication skills.  Active listening encompasses three key aspects : 
  • Cognitive: This involves actively paying attention to all information being communicated.
  • Emotional: This aspect involves remaining calm and compassionate during the conversation.
  • Behavioral: The final aspect of active listening involves conveying interest and comprehension both verbally and nonverbally.
  • Expand Vocabulary: Enhancing your vocabulary can improve your ability to express ideas accurately and precisely.
  • Use appropriate tone and pitch: Adapt your tone and pitch to match the context and audience.
  • Seek Opportunities for Conversations and Discussions: Engage in conversations and discussions with others as much as possible.
  • Use Visualization Techniques: Before important presentations or conversations, visualize yourself speaking confidently and effectively.
  • Seek feedback and practice: Actively seek feedback from trusted individuals, such as mentors or colleagues, and work on areas that need improvement.

Benefits of improving oral communication skills 

Improving oral communication skills can bring a range of benefits to both personal and professional environments. For instance, it can enhance one’s ability to express ideas clearly and effectively, which can help in building strong relationships, both at work and in personal space. 

Moreover, clear communication can also help in avoiding misunderstandings, reduce conflicts, and promote collaboration and teamwork. Additionally, it can improve one’s public speaking abilities, which can help in presentations and speaking engagements. 

Importance of oral communication 

Effective interpersonal interactions rely heavily on oral communication. It allows us to express our thoughts, emotions, and ideas and enables us to understand others more deeply. Strong oral communication also fosters positive relationships, builds trust, and facilitates collaboration.

  • Clarity and understanding: Through oral communication, individuals can effectively express complex ideas and information with clarity. It promotes better understanding and minimizes confusion or misinterpretation.
  • Collaboration and teamwork: Effective oral communication is crucial for successful collaboration and teamwork. It enables individuals to exchange ideas, provide feedback, and work together towards common goals.
  • Enhance Customer Service: In customer-facing roles, oral communication is essential for providing exceptional service. Clear communication helps understand customer needs, address concerns, and provide solutions.
  • Persuasion and influence: Oral communication is a key tool for persuasion and influence. Through effective speaking skills, individuals can convince others to adopt their viewpoints, take action, or change their behavior.
  • Problem-Solving: Effective oral communication is crucial for problem-solving and decision-making processes. It allows for effective sharing of information, active listening, and collaborative discussions.

Significance of oral communication at the organization level 

Oral communication holds immense significance at the organizational level as it impacts various aspects of operations, leadership, decision-making, and external interactions. Effective oral communication ensures smooth information flow and coordination, improving productivity and collaboration within the organization.

It plays a critical role in leadership, allowing leaders to articulate their vision and inspire teams. Decision-making processes benefit from clear communication, facilitating informed discussions and consensus. Externally, effective oral communication builds relationships and satisfaction with stakeholders.

Role of oral communication in a professional context 

In a professional context, oral communication plays a pivotal role in several aspects. It is essential for effective presentations and public speaking, allowing professionals to convey their ideas, and influence decision-making.

In fact, the Corporate Recruiters Survey indicates that oral communication skills are at the top of the list of abilities and skills that employers seek in their candidates.

Furthermore, oral communication is crucial in meetings and discussions, enabling effective collaboration, brainstorming, and problem-solving. It facilitates clear and concise instructions, and delegation, enhancing management abilities.

Overall, oral communication in a professional context is the cornerstone of effective teamwork, leadership, client interactions, and career advancement.

Methods of oral communication 

The methods of oral communication can be divided into two categories, mechanical channels, and non-mechanical channels: 

Methods-of-oral-communication-devided-into-mechanical-and-non-mechanical-channels

The mechanical channels include:

  • Telephone conversations: Communication using telephones, where spoken messages are transmitted electronically.
  • Voicemail: Leaving voice messages on an answering machine or voicemail system for others to listen to later.
  • Conference calls: Communication between multiple parties in different locations through a telephonic connection, allowing for group discussions.
  • Television broadcasting: Transmitting spoken messages along with visual content to a wide audience through television channels.
  • Automated phone systems: Interactive voice response (IVR) systems that use pre-recorded prompts and voice recognition to provide information to appropriate destinations.

Non-Mechanical Channels 

  • Debates: Structured discussions involve participants presenting arguments and counterarguments on a specific topic in an organized manner
  • Interviews: Verbal exchanges between an interviewer and interviewee(s), often used for research or employment purposes.
  • Speeches: Prepared and structured presentations that convey a message or express thoughts and opinions, often delivered at public events.
  • Conferences: Organized events that bring together experts, and professionals in a specific field to share information, discuss ideas, and network.

Modes of oral communication

Understanding the various modes of oral communication can help individuals effectively adapt their communication strategies based on the context, purpose, and audience involved in a given interaction.

There are two broad modes of oral communication: 

1/ Intrapersonal communication: Intrapersonal communication refers to the mode of communication that occurs within an individual’s own mind. It involves the internal exchange and processing of thoughts and ideas. While it may not involve direct interaction with others, intrapersonal communication is essential for self-reflection, self-analysis, and decision-making.

2/ Interpersonal communication: This mode involves communication between two or more people in a face-to-face interaction, with each person taking turns to speak and listen. Interpersonal communication can be either formal or informal, and it is used in a variety of contexts, including personal relationships, business transactions, and social interactions.

Different styles of oral communication

There are several styles that individuals can employ when communicating orally, depending on the context, purpose, and audience. Here are a few common styles:

1/ Formal style: This style of oral communication is characterized by a structured and professional approach. It is commonly utilized in formal scenarios such as business meetings, presentations, or public speaking engagements.

2/ Persuasive style: This style of oral communication aims to influence or persuade the audience. It is often used in sales presentations, debates, or negotiations.

3/ Interactive style: Interactive style of oral communication involves active participation and engagement between the speaker and the audience.

4/ Storytelling style: This style involves the art of storytelling to captivate and engage the audience. It is often used in presentations, speeches, or public performances.

5/ Assertive style: Assertive style focuses on expressing thoughts, opinions, and needs confidently. 

These are just a few examples of different styles of oral communication. It’s important to note that individuals may employ a combination of styles depending on the specific communication context. 

Media of oral communication 

In oral communication, the term “media” denotes the various means or channels through which information is transmitted. Vocal communication can be conveyed through various media, which can impact the message’s effectiveness and reach. Here are a few common media of oral communication:

  • Broadcasting: Broadcasting involves transmitting oral communication through mass media channels such as television or radio. It allows for the spread of information to a large audience, but it is typically a one-way communication channel.
  • Video conferencing: Video conferencing combines audio and video to enable communication between individuals or groups in different locations. It allows for visual and verbal communication, which can enhance the effectiveness of communication in remote settings.
  • Press Conference: A press conference is a media event where a spokesperson or organization addresses the press and journalists to make announcements, provide information, or respond to questions. It allows for oral communication between the spokesperson and the media. 
  • Teleconferences : Teleconferences involve audio communication between multiple participants who are located in different places. It allows individuals or groups to hold meetings or discussions remotely, using telephonic connections or audio conferencing tools.
  • Grapevine: Grapevine refers to the informal and unofficial communication network within an organization or community. It involves the transmission of information, rumors, or gossip through oral channels among individuals.

Principles of effective oral communication 

The following principles serve as guidelines for enhancing the effectiveness of oral communication, allowing speakers to deliver their messages clearly and achieve the desired communication outcomes.

1/ Preparation: Effective oral communication requires proper planning and preparation, including understanding the audience, and determining the topic, timing, and other relevant factors.

2/ Clarity of Pronunciation: Clear and correct pronunciation is crucial for ensuring that the oral message is understood by the receivers. As communication can become confusing when there is a lack of clarity in the message being conveyed.

3/ Natural Voice: Using a natural voice helps maintain the authenticity and effectiveness of oral communication. Avoiding artificial or unnatural tones enhances the overall impact.

4/ Logical Sequence: Organizing ideas in a logical and sequential manner enhances the communicative and appealing nature of the message. 

5/ Use of Suitable Words: Choosing appropriate and familiar words is crucial in oral communication. A simple and common language helps ensure that the receiver can easily understand and respond to the message.

6/ Courtesy: Demonstrating courtesy while addressing listeners creates a positive impression and fosters effective communication. 

7/ Emotional Control: Effective oral communication requires the speaker to maintain emotional control. 

8/ Control of Gesticulation: Conscious control of gestures is important in oral communication. Avoiding excessive or distracting gesticulation ensures that the focus remains on the message. 

Further Reading: Guidelines for effective oral communication

Similarities between principles of oral communication and written communication 

Both oral and written communication share fundamental principles that contribute to effective communication. Starting with clarity which is essential in both forms, emphasizing the need for clear and concise messages.

Understanding the audience which ensures that the message is tailored to the needs and interests of the receiver. Effective communication in both forms requires careful planning and preparation. Additionally, the use of appropriate tone and style enhances communication in both oral presentations and written documents. 

Related Reading: Similarities of Oral and written communication

Barries of oral communication 

  • Technical barriers: Problems with equipment, technology, or software can interfere with good oral communication, especially in remote or virtual settings.
  • Semantic barriers: Misinterpretation of words, phrases, or symbols due to ambiguity, double meanings, or lack of context can hinder the clarity and effectiveness of oral communication.
Related Reading: What are Semantic barriers of communication 
  • Language barriers: When the speaker and the listener don’t share a common language or when the speaker uses jargon, technical language, or unfamiliar words, it can create communication barriers.
  • Physical barriers: Factors in the environment, such as noise, distance, and unfavorable conditions, can pose challenges to mutual understanding between the speaker and listener.
Related Reading : What are physical barriers in communication 
  • Lack of attention and active listening: When listeners are distracted, disengaged, or not actively paying attention to the speaker, it can hinder effective communication.
  • Lack of feedback: Feedback plays a crucial role in oral communication as it allows the speaker to gauge the listener’s understanding and adjust their message accordingly. When there is a lack of feedback it can hamper effective communication.

Difference between communication and oral communication

Oral communication vs aural communication, oral vs purposive communication, oral communication vs public speaking, advantages and disadvantages of oral communication.

Further Reading: Strength and Weakness of oral communication

Advantages of written communication over oral communication 

Written communication has several advantages over oral communication. Firstly, written communication is permanent, which means that the message can be revisited, reviewed, and referred back to if needed. Secondly, written communication is more precise and accurate, as it allows the writer to carefully choose the words and phrasing they use to convey their message.

Further Reading: Advantages of written communication over oral communication

Advantages of oral presentation 

The oral presentation has several advantages that make it a powerful communication tool. One significant advantage is the ability to provide the opportunity for speakers to use body language, and tone to engage with the audience and create a strong emotional connection. Additionally, oral presentations allow for immediate feedback from the audience, which can help speakers to adjust their message in real-time.

Importance of audio visual aid on oral communication 

Audiovisual aids are essential in oral communication as they enhance the effectiveness of the message by making it more engaging and memorable for the audience. It plays a crucial role in illustrating complex ideas and reinforcing key points, enhancing the overall verbal message. By using visual aids, the speaker can also maintain the audience’s attention, reducing the likelihood of distraction and increasing their engagement with the message.

Related Reading: Audio-visual communication advantages and Disadvantages

What factors to consider while choosing oral communication 

When choosing oral communication as a means of conveying your message, there are several important factors to consider:

  • Purpose and Audience: Clearly define the purpose of the communication and identify the target audience.
  • Clarity: Focus on clarity and simplicity in your message.
  • Content and Structure: Determine the key points and information to be delivered. 
  • Delivery Style: Consider the appropriate delivery style based on the nature of the message, audience, and context.
  • Timing: Consider the appropriate timing for your communication. 
  • Technology and Visual Aids: Assess the need for technology or visual aids to enhance your oral communication. 

Frequently Asked Question

Q1) what is oral communication and examples.

Ans: Oral communication involves communicating thoughts or concepts using spoken language. Examples include face-to-face conversations, phone calls, presentations, and group discussions.

Q2) Why is oral communication important?

Ans: Oral communication is important as it allows for immediate feedback, clarification, and personal connection, facilitating effective understanding and collaboration among individuals or within a group.

Q3) What is oral information?

Ans: Oral information refers to the transmission of knowledge or data through spoken words or verbal communication rather than in written or visual form.

Q4) What is oral communication in business communication?

Ans: Oral communication in business communication involves the verbal exchange of information, ideas, and instructions within an organizational context, such as meetings, negotiations, presentations, and interpersonal interactions.

Q5) What is another name for oral communication?

Ans: Another name for oral communication is spoken communication.

Q6) What is oral language?

Ans: Oral language refers to the ability to communicate effectively using spoken words. It encompasses vocabulary, grammar, pronunciation, and fluency in a particular language.

Q7) What is an oral presentation?

Ans: An oral presentation involves verbally conveying findings to an audience through spoken delivery. It often involves the use of visual aids and aims to inform, persuade, or entertain listeners.

Q8) Short note on oral communication?

Ans: Oral communication encompasses the interactive sharing of information. It allows for immediate interaction, feedback, and emotional connection, enhancing understanding and collaboration.

Q9) What is visual communication?

Ans: Visual communication refers to the conveyance of information or ideas through visual elements, such as graphs, charts, images, and videos, to effectively communicate and engage with an audience.

Q10) What is written communication?

Ans: Written communication utilizes written words as a means to effectively convey messages. It includes emails, reports, memos, letters, and other written forms of expression.

Q11) What is verbal communication?

Ans: Verbal communication is the use of spoken words to convey messages, ideas, or information between individuals or within a group. It includes face-to-face conversations, phone calls, and oral presentations.

Q12) What is non-verbal communication?

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Why Communication Matters

We communicate to create, maintain, and change relationships and selves..

Posted July 15, 2021 | Reviewed by Vanessa Lancaster

  • Why Relationships Matter
  • Find a therapist to strengthen relationships
  • How we communicate helps relationships get off on the right foot, navigate problems, and change over time.
  • In communication, we develop, create, maintain, and alter our relationships.
  • We communicate to work our way through family changes and challenges in verbal and non-verbal ways.

Image by edsavi30 from Pixabay

I remember seeing a poster on my junior high classroom wall: “Communication is the Beginning of Understanding.” This spoke to me at the time. Yet, like so many people, I had never really thought much about communication. I would have described communication as sending and receiving messages.

Communication Is More Than Sending and Receiving Messages

In reality, communication is often about transmitting information. We send and receive messages with people in our lives. Daily, much of our communication consists of coordinating schedules, “What time are you getting home for dinner?” and negotiating whose turn it is to do the dishes, pay the bills, or take dinner to a friend who is ill. We send messages like, “It is your turn to let the dog out” and receive messages like, “Don’t forget to get dog food at the store” (if you have not guessed, a lot of the messages in my house are about the dog).

We might also blame problems on communication, talking about “communication breakdowns” or on a “lack of communication.” If we think about communication in these ways, we have missed so much that is important about communication. We have neglected how and why communication matters.

Communication Matters to Creating and Changing Relationships

We become aware of how Communication Matters when

  • We confront issues with work-life balance.
  • We experience positive events like the birth of a baby or winning an award.
  • We have a friend does who does not do or say what we expect.
  • We have disagreements over religious beliefs or political values.

Both positive and challenging events affect, reflect, and change our identity and the identity of our personal and family relationships. What do I mean by this? How did these relationships come into being? Well, think about the last time you started a new friendship or had a new member join your family. Through what you and the other person said and did, what we’d call verbal and nonverbal communication , these relationships took shape.

Sometimes relationships develop easily and clearly. They are healthy and pleasant. Other times, relationships develop in stress and storm and may be healthy or not. How we communicate helps relationships get off on the right foot, navigate problems, and change over time.

What is important to understand is that relationships are talked into (and out of) being. In communication, we develop, create, maintain, and alter our relationships. As we communicate, we become and change who we are. Think about how you have grown and changed as you communicate at home, at work, with friends, and in your community.

Communication Matters to Relationship and Family Identity

As we communicate, we co-create relationships and our own identity. As you think about your close relationships and your family, you can likely recall important events, both positive and negative, that impacted how you understand your relationship and yourself as a person.

Consider this example: one of my college students described a childhood family ritual of going out on the front lawn on Christmas Eve. The family sang Christmas carols and threw carrots on the roof for Santa’s reindeers. The family still does this annual carrot-throwing ritual in adulthood. You can picture them bringing their sometimes confused new partners and spouses out in the snow to throw carrots onto the roof and sing.

Why does this family still throw carrots and sing? Through this seemingly silly ritual, the family celebrates who they are as a family and the togetherness that is important to them. The family creates space for new people to join the family. Through their words and actions, members of the family teach their new partners how to be family members through carrot throwing and other vital experiences.

I am sure you can point to experiences that have been central to creating your relationships and your identity.

Communication Matters as We Face Change and Challenges

We also communicate to work our way through family changes and challenges. Family members or others may have different expectations of what our family and personal identity or should be. This is especially true when a family does not fit dominant cultural models, such as single-parent families, multi-ethnic families, stepfamilies, LGBTQ families, or adoptive families.

importance of oral communication in daily life

For me, becoming a stepfamily was highly challenging. We became a stepfamily when I was 12 years old. My mother had recently died, and my Dad surprised us, kids, introducing us to the woman he wanted to marry. We no longer matched the other families in the neighborhood where we’d lived most of our lives. We certainly did not feel like a family overnight.

It took my stepfamily several years to create an understanding of what it meant to be a family. As we interacted, and with many mistakes and some successes, we slowly came to understand what we needed and expected from each other to be a family.

For all of us, relationship and family identity is constantly developing and changing. In my case, I remember my stepmom reminding me to wear a jacket when going out in the evening, even into my 40s, and giving me advice about my health. At some point, our roles changed, and now, as she moves toward her 80s, more often than not, I am in the role of asking about her health and helping her with significant decisions. What it means to be a mother or daughter and what we expect of each other and ourselves change as we interact.

Communication Matters . Whether we are negotiating whose turn it is to feed the dog, how to become a parent, how to interact with a difficult co-worker, or how to celebrate with a friend who won a major award, it is in communication that we learn what to do and say. This is what I will write about in this blog as I reflect on what I have learned as a professor and researcher of interpersonal and family communication. I invite you to go on this journey with me. I hope to give you insights into your communication.

Communication Matters. Communication is the Beginning of Understanding . It is an exciting and ever-changing journey.

Baxter, L. A. (2004). Relationships as dialogues. Personal Relationships, 11 , 1-22. doi: 10.1111/j.1475-6811.2004.00068.x

Braithwaite, D. O., Foster, E. A., & Bergen, K. M. (2018). Social construction theory: Communication co-creating families. In D. O. Braithwaite, E. A. Suter, & K. Floyd. (Eds.). Engaging theories in family communication: Multiple perspectives (2nd ed., pp. 267-278). Routledge.

Braithwaite, D. O., Waldron, V. R., Allen, J., Bergquist, G., Marsh, J., Oliver, B., Storck, K., Swords, N., & Tschampl-Diesing, C. (2018). “Feeling warmth and close to her”: Communication and resilience reflected in turning points in positive adult stepchild-stepparent relationships. Journal of Family Communication, 18 , 92-109. doi: 10.1080/15267431.2017.1415902

Dawn O. Braithwaite, Ph.D.

Dawn O. Braithwaite, Ph.D., a professor of communication at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, studies families and close relationships, especially step- and chosen families.

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Oral Communication: Definitions, Importance, Methods, Types, Advantages, and Disadvantages

  • Post author: Anuj Kumar
  • Post published: 18 October 2021
  • Post category: Communication / Journalism / Soft Skills
  • Post comments: 0 Comments

Table of Contents

  • 1 What is Oral Communication?
  • 2 Definitions of Oral Communication
  • 3.1 Clear Pronunciation
  • 3.2 Brevity
  • 3.3 Precision
  • 3.4 Conviction
  • 3.5 Logical Sequence
  • 3.6 Appropriate Word Choice
  • 3.7 Use natural voice
  • 3.8 Communicate With Right Person
  • 3.9 Do Not Get Guided by Assumptions
  • 3.10 Look for Feedback
  • 3.11 Allow to Ask Questions
  • 4.1 Face-to-Face Conversation
  • 4.2 Telephone
  • 4.3 Presentation
  • 4.4 Public Speech
  • 4.5 Interview
  • 4.6 Meeting
  • 5.1 Speak in a Clear, Confident Strong Voice
  • 5.2 Be Coherent
  • 5.3 Avoid Using Filler Words
  • 5.4 Be an Active Listener
  • 6 Advantages and Disadvantages of Oral Communication
  • 7.1 Quickness in Exchange of Ideas
  • 7.2 Immediate Feedback
  • 7.3 Flexibility
  • 7.4 Economic Sources
  • 7.5 Personal Touch
  • 7.6 Effective Source
  • 7.7 Saves Time and Increases Efficiency
  • 8.1 Unfit for Lengthy Message
  • 8.2 Unfit for Policy Matters
  • 8.3 Lack of Written Proof
  • 8.4 Expensive Method
  • 8.5 Lack of Clarity
  • 8.6 Misuse of Time
  • 8.7 Presence of Both the Parties Necessary
  • 9 Oral Mode is Used Where
  • 10.1 What is oral communication in one word?
  • 10.2 What is oral communication according to different authors?
  • 10.3 What is the importance of an oral communication essay?
  • 10.4 What are the methods of oral communication?
  • 10.5 What is oral communication according to the authors?
  • 10.6 What is the importance of oral communication?
  • 10.7 What are the six types of oral communication?
  • 10.8 What are the advantages of communication?
  • 10.9 What are the disadvantages of communication?
  • What is Oral Communication?

Oral communication implies communication through the mouth. It includes individuals conversing with each other, be it direct conversation or telephonic conversation. Speeches, presentations, and discussions are all forms of oral communication .

Oral communication is generally recommended when the communication matter is of a temporary kind or where a direct interaction is required. Face-to-face communication (meetings, lectures, conferences, interviews, etc.) is significant so as to build rapport and trust.

What is Oral Communication

In other words, Oral communication is the process of expressing information or ideas by talking. It is predominantly referred to as speech communication.

  • Definitions of Oral Communication

These are the following definitions of oral communication :

  • Importance of Oral Communication

The following are the importance of oral communication :

Clear Pronunciation

Logical sequence, appropriate word choice, use natural voice, communicate with right person, do not get guided by assumptions, look for feedback, allow to ask questions.

Importance of Oral Communication

The message should be pronounced clearly, otherwise, the receiver may not understand the words of the sender.

A brief message is considered the most effective factor since the receiver’s retention capacity is limited in oral communication . The sender should be as brief as possible.

The sender should ensure the exactness of the message. The only relevant issue should be included in the message and that too with accuracy.

The sender should believe in the facts that are being communicated to others. The oral presentation should evince the confidence of the sender.

The sender should present the message logically. The points to be spoken first and what should follow to convey the meaning and motives of the sender effectively to the receiver need to be looked into.

Words are symbols. They have no fixed or universal meanings. The meanings of words at that moment are in the mind of the sender. Therefore, the sender should select the words which are suitable and understandable to the other party and those which convey exactly the same meanings as the sender wanted.

A natural voice conveys integrity and conviction. It is advised to use a natural voice in oral communication .

It is essential to know with whom to communicate. If you communicate the right message to the wrong person, it may lead to a lot of problems. Be sure in recognizing the right person to communicate with.

Never assume that your listener has knowledge already of the subject matter. You may be wrong many times in such assumptions. You can be good only when you are confident in your message without any omission.

When communicating, if you are smart enough in collecting feedback verbally or non-verbally, you can quickly alter the message, if necessary.

It is important to give freedom to the receiver to rise questions whenever he feels ambiguity or confusion. In a way, the communicator should encourage the receiver to ask questions. Such questions are opportunities to clarify doubts.

Types of Oral Communication

These are the types of oral communication discussed below in detail:

Face-to-Face Conversation

Presentation, public speech.

Oral communication is best when it is face-to-face . A face-to-face setting is possible between two individuals or among a small group of people in an interview or in a small meeting; communication can flow both ways in these situations. There is always immediate feedback, which makes clarification possible.

Telephone talk depends entirely on the voice. It does not have the advantage of physical presence. Clarity of speech and skillful use of voice is important. There can be confusion between similar sounding words like pale and bale or between light and like.

Names and addresses communicated on the telephone are sometimes wrongly received. It is therefore customary to clarify spellings by saying C for Cuttack, B for Bal sore, and so on.

A presentation has a face-to-face setting. It is a formal and well-prepared talk on a specific topic, delivered to a knowledgeable and interested audience. Visual aids are used to enhance a presentation. The person who makes the presentation is expected to answer questions at the end.

It is the responsibility of the presenter to ensure that there is a clear understanding of all aspects of the topic among the audience.

A public speech or lecture, with or without microphones, has a face-to-face setting, but the distance between the speaker and audience is great; this distance increases as the audience gets larger, as in an open-air public meeting.

The purpose of a public speech may be to entertain, encourage and inspire. Much depends on the speaker’s skill in using gestures and using the microphone. Feedback is very little as the speaker can hardly see the facial expressions of people in the audience. A public speech is followed by applause rather than by questions from the audience.

An interview is a meeting in which a person or a panel of persons, who are the interviewers, ask questions from the interviewee. The purpose is, usually, to assess and judge whether it would be worthwhile to enter into a business relationship with the other.

Each side makes an assessment of the other. An interview is structured and is characterized by the question and answer type of communication .

Usually, a meeting involves many persons; there is a chairman or a leader who leads and guides the communication and maintains proper order. There is a fixed agenda, i.e., a list of issues to be discussed at the meeting.

Meetings are of many types, from the small committee meeting consisting of three or four persons to the large conference or the shareholders’ meeting. This type of oral communication is backed up by note-taking and writing up minutes.

  • Methods to Improve Oral Communication Skills

These are some methods to improve oral communication skills :

Speak in a Clear, Confident Strong Voice

Be coherent, avoid using filler words, be an active listener.

Methods to Improve Oral Communication Skills

one should speak in a confident, clear, and strong voice so that it is audible to everyone in the audience. Keep the pace of your speaking average, not very slow not very fast. While speaking, face the audience.

One should speak coherently with a concentration on your subject only. Try not to be distracted from your subject, try to prevent other thoughts at that time.

It is better to pause for a second rather than using filler words, such as “Yeah”, “So”, “Um”, and “Like” frequent use of filler words disturbs coherence and distracts the audience.

Verbal communication is a two-way process; you should, therefore, be an active listener too. Try to understand a question/query quickly, because it looks odd to ask to repeat the question.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Oral Communication

These are the following advantages and disadvantages of oral communication :

Advantages of Oral Communication

Disadvantages of oral communication.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Oral Communication

Following are the advantages of oral communication :

Quickness in Exchange of Ideas

Immediate feedback, flexibility, economic sources, personal touch, effective source, saves time and increases efficiency.

Advantages of Oral Communication

Quickness in Exchange of Ideas : The ideas can be conveyed to distant places quickly because this medium does not require the message to be written.

Immediate Feedback : Oral communication helps in understanding the extent to which the receiver has understood the message through his feelings during the course of the conversation.

Flexibility : Oral communication has an element of flexibility inherent in it. Flexibility means changing ideas according to the situation or changing ideas according to the interest of the receiver.

Economic Sources : It is an economic source of communication because the message is communicated only orally.

Personal Touch : Oral communication has a personal touch. Both sides can understand each other’s feelings, being face to face. The conversation takes place in a clean environment, which increases mutual confidence..

Effective Source : Oral Communication leaves much impression on the receiver. It is said that sometimes a thing can be communicated more effectively with the help of some sign. The use of signs or gesticulation can only be made in oral communication.

Saves Time and Increases Efficiency : This communication consumes less time and the superiors can utilize the time saved for some other more important work. As a result of this the efficiency of the sender increases.

Let’s discuss some disadvantages of oral communication :

Unfit for Lengthy Message

Unfit for policy matters, lack of written proof, expensive method, lack of clarity, misuse of time, presence of both the parties necessary.

Disadvantages of Oral Communication

Unfit for Lengthy Message : Oral communication is profitable in having a brief exchange of ideas only. It is not possible for the receiver to remember a long message.

Unfit for Policy Matters : Where policies, rules, or other important messages are to be communicated, oral communication has no importance.

Lack of Written Proof : In the case of oral communication no written proof is left for future reference. Therefore, sometimes difficulty has to be faced.

Expensive Method : When less important information is sent to distant places through telephone, etc. oral communication proves costly.

Lack of Clarity : This is possible when there is little time for conversation. Sometimes wrong can be uttered in a hurry, which can lead to adverse results.

Misuse of Time : Oral communication is considered a misuse of time when during meetings the conversation is lengthened unnecessarily. Parties involved in the communication waste their time in useless talks.

Presence of Both the Parties Necessary : In oral communication, it is essential for the sender and the receiver to be present face to face, it does not mean in the physical sense. But in written communication , one party is required.

  • Oral Mode is Used Where

These are the following points where we used oral mode :

  • Personal authentication is needed. e.g., between an officer and her personal secretary; a journalist and her source (“I heard it from a reliable source”)
  • Social or gregarious needs must be met. e.g.,’ speaking with a visiting delegation
  • Warmth and personal qualities are called for. e.g., group or team interaction
  • Exactitude and precision are not vitally important. e.g., brainstorming for ideas I
  • Situations demand maximum understanding. e.g., sorting out problems or differences between individuals, or between two groups such as administration and students.
  • An atmosphere of openness is desired. e.g., talks between management and. workers
  • Added impact is needed to get the receiver’s focus. e.g., a chairperson of an organization addressing the staff; a presidential or royal address to a nation
  • Decisions or information have to be communicated quickly. e.g., officers issuing officers during natural disasters such as floods or an earthquake
  • Confidential matters are to be discussed. e.g., exchange of positive or negative information about an organization or an individual. In the process of appointments or promotion or selection of individuals, a period of open discussion may precede the final decision that is recorded in writing.

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FAQ Related to Oral Communication

What is oral communication in one word.

Oral communication expresses ideas through the spoken word.

What is oral communication according to different authors?

Oral communication takes place when spoken words are used to transfer information and understanding from one person to another. BY S. K. Kapur

What is the importance of an oral communication essay?

The following are the importance of oral communication: Clear Pronunciation, Brevity, Precision, Conviction, Logical Sequence, Appropriate Word Choice, Use of natural voice, etc.

What are the methods of oral communication?

Following are some methods to improve oral communication skills: Speak in a Clear, Confident Strong Voice, Be Coherent, Avoid Using Filler Words, Be an Active Listener, etc.

What is oral communication according to the authors?

Oral communication expresses ideas through the spoken word. By  Bovee

What is the importance of oral communication?

Following are the importance of oral communication: 1. Clear Pronunciation 2. Brevity 3. Precision 4. Conviction 5. Logical Sequence 6. Appropriate Word Choice 7. Use a natural voice 8. Communicate With Right Person 9. Do Not Get Guided by Assumptions 10. Look for Feedback 11. Allow to Ask Questions.

What are the six types of oral communication?

These are the six types of oral communication: 1. Face-to-Face Conversation 2. Telephone 3. Presentation 4. Public Speech 5. Interview 6. Meeting.

What are the advantages of communication?

Advantages of Communication given below: 1. Quickness in Exchange of Ideas 2. Immediate Feedback 3. Flexibility 4. Economic Sources 5. Personal Touch 6. Effective Source 7. Saves Time and Increases Efficiency.

What are the disadvantages of communication?

Disadvantages of Communication: 1. Unfit for Lengthy Message 2. Unfit for Policy Matters 3. Lack of Written Proof 4. Expensive Method 5. Lack of Clarity 6. Misuse of Time 7. Presence of Both the Parties Necessary.

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1.1 Why Is Public Speaking Important?

Learning objectives.

  • Explore three types of public speaking in everyday life: informative, persuasive, and entertaining.
  • Understand the benefits of taking a course in public speaking.
  • Explain the benefits people get from engaging in public speaking.

A man speaking to a group of women

Christian Pierret – Leader – CC BY 2.0.

In today’s world, we are constantly bombarded with messages both good and bad. No matter where you live, where you work or go to school, or what kinds of media you use, you are probably exposed to hundreds. if not thousands, of advertising messages every day. Researcher Norman W. Edmund estimates that by 2020 the amount of knowledge in the world will double every seventy-three days (Edmund, 2005). Because we live in a world where we are overwhelmed with content, communicating information in a way that is accessible to others is more important today than ever before. To help us further understand why public speaking is important, we will first examine public speaking in everyday life. We will then discuss how public speaking can benefit you personally.

Everyday Public Speaking

Every single day people across the United States and around the world stand up in front of some kind of audience and speak. In fact, there’s even a monthly publication that reproduces some of the top speeches from around the United States called Vital Speeches of the Day ( http://www.vsotd.com ). Although public speeches are of various types, they can generally be grouped into three categories based on their intended purpose: informative, persuasive, and entertaining.

Informative Speaking

One of the most common types of public speaking is informative speaking . The primary purpose of informative presentations is to share one’s knowledge of a subject with an audience. Reasons for making an informative speech vary widely. For example, you might be asked to instruct a group of coworkers on how to use new computer software or to report to a group of managers how your latest project is coming along. A local community group might wish to hear about your volunteer activities in New Orleans during spring break, or your classmates may want you to share your expertise on Mediterranean cooking. What all these examples have in common is the goal of imparting information to an audience.

Informative speaking is integrated into many different occupations. Physicians often lecture about their areas of expertise to medical students, other physicians, and patients. Teachers find themselves presenting to parents as well as to their students. Firefighters give demonstrations about how to effectively control a fire in the house. Informative speaking is a common part of numerous jobs and other everyday activities. As a result, learning how to speak effectively has become an essential skill in today’s world.

Persuasive Speaking

A second common reason for speaking to an audience is to persuade others. In our everyday lives, we are often called on to convince, motivate, or otherwise persuade others to change their beliefs, take an action, or reconsider a decision. Advocating for music education in your local school district, convincing clients to purchase your company’s products, or inspiring high school students to attend college all involve influencing other people through public speaking.

For some people, such as elected officials, giving persuasive speeches is a crucial part of attaining and continuing career success. Other people make careers out of speaking to groups of people who pay to listen to them. Motivational authors and speakers, such as Les Brown ( http://www.lesbrown.com ), make millions of dollars each year from people who want to be motivated to do better in their lives. Brian Tracy, another professional speaker and author, specializes in helping business leaders become more productive and effective in the workplace ( http://www.briantracy.com ).

Whether public speaking is something you do every day or just a few times a year, persuading others is a challenging task. If you develop the skill to persuade effectively, it can be personally and professionally rewarding.

Entertaining Speaking

Entertaining speaking involves an array of speaking occasions ranging from introductions to wedding toasts, to presenting and accepting awards, to delivering eulogies at funerals and memorial services in addition to after-dinner speeches and motivational speeches. Entertaining speaking has been important since the time of the ancient Greeks, when Aristotle identified epideictic speaking (speaking in a ceremonial context) as an important type of address. As with persuasive and informative speaking, there are professionals, from religious leaders to comedians, who make a living simply from delivering entertaining speeches. As anyone who has watched an awards show on television or has seen an incoherent best man deliver a wedding toast can attest, speaking to entertain is a task that requires preparation and practice to be effective.

Personal Benefits of Public Speaking

Oral communication skills were the number one skill that college graduates found useful in the business world, according to a study by sociologist Andrew Zekeri (Zekeri, 2004). That fact alone makes learning about public speaking worthwhile. However, there are many other benefits of communicating effectively for the hundreds of thousands of college students every year who take public speaking courses. Let’s take a look at some of the personal benefits you’ll get both from a course in public speaking and from giving public speeches.

Benefits of Public Speaking Courses

In addition to learning the process of creating and delivering an effective speech, students of public speaking leave the class with a number of other benefits as well. Some of these benefits include

  • developing critical thinking skills,
  • fine-tuning verbal and nonverbal skills,
  • overcoming fear of public speaking.

Developing Critical Thinking Skills

One of the very first benefits you will gain from your public speaking course is an increased ability to think critically. Problem solving is one of many critical thinking skills you will engage in during this course. For example, when preparing a persuasive speech, you’ll have to think through real problems affecting your campus, community, or the world and provide possible solutions to those problems. You’ll also have to think about the positive and negative consequences of your solutions and then communicate your ideas to others. At first, it may seem easy to come up with solutions for a campus problem such as a shortage of parking spaces: just build more spaces. But after thinking and researching further you may find out that building costs, environmental impact from loss of green space, maintenance needs, or limited locations for additional spaces make this solution impractical. Being able to think through problems and analyze the potential costs and benefits of solutions is an essential part of critical thinking and of public speaking aimed at persuading others. These skills will help you not only in public speaking contexts but throughout your life as well. As we stated earlier, college graduates in Zekeri’s study rated oral communication skills as the most useful for success in the business world. The second most valuable skill they reported was problem-solving ability, so your public speaking course is doubly valuable!

Another benefit to public speaking is that it will enhance your ability to conduct and analyze research. Public speakers must provide credible evidence within their speeches if they are going to persuade various audiences. So your public speaking course will further refine your ability to find and utilize a range of sources.

Fine-Tuning Verbal and Nonverbal Skills

A second benefit of taking a public speaking course is that it will help you fine-tune your verbal and nonverbal communication skills. Whether you competed in public speaking in high school or this is your first time speaking in front of an audience, having the opportunity to actively practice communication skills and receive professional feedback will help you become a better overall communicator. Often, people don’t even realize that they twirl their hair or repeatedly mispronounce words while speaking in public settings until they receive feedback from a teacher during a public speaking course. People around the United States will often pay speech coaches over one hundred dollars per hour to help them enhance their speaking skills. You have a built-in speech coach right in your classroom, so it is to your advantage to use the opportunity to improve your verbal and nonverbal communication skills.

Overcoming Fear of Public Speaking

An additional benefit of taking a public speaking class is that it will help reduce your fear of public speaking. Whether they’ve spoken in public a lot or are just getting started, most people experience some anxiety when engaging in public speaking. Heidi Rose and Andrew Rancer evaluated students’ levels of public speaking anxiety during both the first and last weeks of their public speaking class and found that those levels decreased over the course of the semester (Rose & Rancer, 1993). One explanation is that people often have little exposure to public speaking. By taking a course in public speaking, students become better acquainted with the public speaking process, making them more confident and less apprehensive. In addition, you will learn specific strategies for overcoming the challenges of speech anxiety. We will discuss this topic in greater detail in Chapter 3 “Speaking Confidently” .

Benefits of Engaging in Public Speaking

Once you’ve learned the basic skills associated with public speaking, you’ll find that being able to effectively speak in public has profound benefits, including

  • influencing the world around you,
  • developing leadership skills,
  • becoming a thought leader.

Influencing the World around You

If you don’t like something about your local government, then speak out about your issue! One of the best ways to get our society to change is through the power of speech. Common citizens in the United States and around the world, like you, are influencing the world in real ways through the power of speech. Just type the words “citizens speak out” in a search engine and you’ll find numerous examples of how common citizens use the power of speech to make real changes in the world—for example, by speaking out against “fracking” for natural gas (a process in which chemicals are injected into rocks in an attempt to open them up for fast flow of natural gas or oil) or in favor of retaining a popular local sheriff. One of the amazing parts of being a citizen in a democracy is the right to stand up and speak out, which is a luxury many people in the world do not have. So if you don’t like something, be the force of change you’re looking for through the power of speech.

Developing Leadership Skills

Have you ever thought about climbing the corporate ladder and eventually finding yourself in a management or other leadership position? If so, then public speaking skills are very important. Hackman and Johnson assert that effective public speaking skills are a necessity for all leaders (Hackman & Johnson, 2004). If you want people to follow you, you have to communicate effectively and clearly what followers should do. According to Bender, “Powerful leadership comes from knowing what matters to you. Powerful presentations come from expressing this effectively. It’s important to develop both” (Bender, 1998). One of the most important skills for leaders to develop is their public speaking skills, which is why executives spend millions of dollars every year going to public speaking workshops; hiring public speaking coaches; and buying public speaking books, CDs, and DVDs.

Becoming a Thought Leader

Even if you are not in an official leadership position, effective public speaking can help you become a “ thought leader .” Joel Kurtzman, editor of Strategy & Business , coined this term to call attention to individuals who contribute new ideas to the world of business. According to business consultant Ken Lizotte, “when your colleagues, prospects, and customers view you as one very smart guy or gal to know, then you’re a thought leader” (Lizotte, 2008). Typically, thought leaders engage in a range of behaviors, including enacting and conducting research on business practices. To achieve thought leader status, individuals must communicate their ideas to others through both writing and public speaking. Lizotte demonstrates how becoming a thought leader can be personally and financially rewarding at the same time: when others look to you as a thought leader, you will be more desired and make more money as a result. Business gurus often refer to “intellectual capital,” or the combination of your knowledge and ability to communicate that knowledge to others (Lizotte, 2008). Whether standing before a group of executives discussing the next great trend in business or delivering a webinar (a seminar over the web), thought leaders use public speaking every day to create the future that the rest of us live in.

Key Takeaways

  • People have many reasons for engaging in public speaking, but the skills necessary for public speaking are applicable whether someone is speaking for informative, persuasive, or entertainment reasons.
  • Taking a public speaking class will improve your speaking skills, help you be a more critical thinker, fine-tune your verbal and nonverbal communication skills, and help you overcome public speaking anxiety.
  • Effective public speaking skills have many direct benefits for the individual speaker, including influencing the world around you, developing leadership skills, and becoming a go-to person for ideas and solutions.
  • Talk to people who are currently working in the career you hope to pursue. Of the three types of public speaking discussed in the text, which do they use most commonly use in their work?
  • Read one of the free speeches available at http://www.vsotd.com . What do you think the speaker was trying to accomplish? What was her or his reason for speaking?
  • Which personal benefit are you most interested in receiving from a public speaking class? Why?

Bender, P. U. (1998). Stand, deliver and lead. Ivey Business Journal , 62 (3), 46–47.

Edmund, N. W. (2005). End the biggest educational and intellectual blunder in history: A $100,000 challenge to our top educational leaders . Ft. Lauderdale, FL: Scientific Method Publishing Co.

Hackman, M. Z., & Johnson, C. E. (2004). Leadership: A communication perspective (4th ed.). Long Grove, IL: Waveland.

Lizotte, K. (2008). The expert’s edge: Become the go-to authority people turn to every time [Kindle 2 version]. New York, NY: McGraw-Hill. Retrieved from Amazon.com (locations 72–78).

Rose, H. M., & Rancer, A. S. (1993). The impact of basic courses in oral interpretation and public speaking on communication apprehension. Communication Reports , 6 , 54–60.

Zekeri, A. A. (2004). College curriculum competencies and skills former students found essential to their careers. College Student Journal , 38 , 412–422.

Stand up, Speak out Copyright © 2016 by University of Minnesota is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License , except where otherwise noted.

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The Importance of Oral Communication: Enhancing Your Verbal Skills

Oral Communication

Effective communication is the cornerstone of successful interactions, and oral communication plays a crucial role in conveying ideas, thoughts, and emotions. Whether in personal or professional settings, being proficient in oral communication can lead to better relationships, improved teamwork, and increased opportunities for growth. In this article, we will explore the significance of oral communication, its various types, benefits, and potential barriers, and offer valuable tips to enhance your verbal skills.

Table of Contents

Oral communication refers to the process of exchanging information, ideas, and emotions through spoken words. It involves the sender conveying a message verbally, while the receiver receives and interprets the message.

This form of communication relies on the use of language, vocal intonations, gestures, facial expressions, and other nonverbal cues to convey meaning and establish understanding.

Oral communication holds immense importance in both personal and professional contexts. Here are some key reasons why it is crucial:

1. Effective Expression:

Oral communication allows individuals to articulate their thoughts, ideas, and emotions clearly. It provides a platform for self-expression, enabling individuals to convey their messages with precision and impact.

2. Building Relationships:

Oral communication plays a vital role in forming and nurturing relationships. By engaging in meaningful conversations, individuals can establish connections, build trust, and foster empathy, leading to stronger personal and professional bonds.

3. Collaboration and Teamwork:

In professional settings, effective oral communication is essential for collaboration and teamwork. It enables team members to share information, coordinate tasks, exchange feedback, and work together towards common goals, enhancing productivity and efficiency.

4. Conflict Resolution:

Oral communication facilitates conflict resolution by allowing individuals to express their concerns, understand differing perspectives, and find mutually agreeable solutions. Effective communication skills help in de-escalating conflicts and maintaining harmonious relationships.

5. Career Advancement:

Proficiency in oral communication is often a prerequisite for career advancement. Employers value individuals who can articulate ideas persuasively, deliver engaging presentations, and communicate effectively with colleagues, clients, and stakeholders.

Oral communication can take various forms, each serving distinct purposes and contexts. Here are some common types of oral communication:

1. Conversations and Dialogues:

Face-to-face conversations, informal discussions, and dialogues form the basis of oral communication. These interactions allow individuals to exchange information, share experiences, and build connections.

2. Presentations and Public Speaking:

Presentations involve delivering information, ideas, or opinions to an audience. Public speaking goes beyond mere information sharing and often aims to persuade, entertain, or inspire listeners.

3. Interviews:

Interviews serve as a platform to assess an individual’s suitability for a job or educational opportunity. Effective oral communication skills are crucial for conveying qualifications, and experiences, and answering questions confidently.

4. Phone Calls and Voice Chats:

Phone calls and voice chats are commonly used for both personal and professional communication. These forms require clear articulation, active listening, and effective use of vocal cues.

Mastering oral communication offers several advantages in both personal and professional realms. Some key benefits include:

1. Clarity and Understanding

One of the significant advantages of mastering oral communication is the ability to achieve clarity and promote understanding. When individuals possess effective oral communication skills, they can express their thoughts, ideas, and emotions in a clear and concise manner.

This clarity ensures that the intended message is accurately conveyed and comprehended by the receiver. By communicating with clarity, individuals minimize the risk of confusion, ambiguity, or misinterpretation, fostering a mutual understanding between all parties involved.

Effective oral communication enables information to be communicated accurately, facilitating productive interactions and preventing potential misunderstandings or breakdowns in communication.

2. Influence and Persuasion

Proficiency in oral communication empowers individuals to exert influence and effectively persuade others. When individuals possess strong oral communication skills, they can articulate their ideas, opinions, and arguments in a compelling and persuasive manner.

By using persuasive language, engaging storytelling techniques, and employing effective delivery methods, individuals can sway opinions, inspire action, and influence the decisions of others.

Whether it is in negotiations, sales, leadership roles, or public speaking engagements, the ability to communicate persuasively through oral communication can be a powerful tool. It allows individuals to convey their message convincingly, address objections, and create a compelling case for their viewpoint.

The skill of influence and persuasion through oral communication can significantly impact personal and professional success, opening doors to new opportunities and fostering positive outcomes in various spheres of life.

3. Enhanced Social Skills

Developing strong oral communication skills contributes to the improvement of social interactions and the development of better social skills. When individuals possess effective oral communication abilities, they can express themselves clearly, actively listen to others, and engage in meaningful conversations.

This clarity and attentiveness create a positive environment for communication, allowing individuals to connect more effectively with others and establish stronger relationships. By being able to articulate their thoughts, emotions, and opinions confidently, individuals can actively participate in discussions, share experiences, and empathize with others.

Enhanced social skills through oral communication also involve nonverbal cues such as maintaining eye contact, using appropriate facial expressions, and employing gestures that align with the spoken message.

These skills contribute to effective communication, enabling individuals to understand others better, adapt to various social contexts, and build strong interpersonal connections. Improved social skills through oral communication positively impact personal relationships, teamwork, collaboration, and overall social well-being.

4. Increased Confidence

The development of effective oral communication skills leads to an increase in confidence. When individuals can express themselves clearly and articulate their thoughts and ideas with ease, it boosts their self-assurance.

Having the ability to communicate orally in a confident manner allows individuals to engage in conversations, presentations, and public speaking engagements without hesitation or self-doubt. This newfound confidence enables individuals to assert themselves, share their perspectives, and actively participate in discussions.

With increased confidence in their oral communication skills, individuals feel more comfortable expressing their opinions, engaging in debates, and presenting their ideas to others. This enhanced confidence extends beyond communication scenarios, positively impacting various aspects of life such as personal relationships, career opportunities, and overall self-esteem.

5. Career Advancement Opportunities

Proficiency in oral communication opens doors to numerous career advancement opportunities. When individuals possess strong oral communication skills, they become highly sought after by employers across industries. Effective verbal skills enable individuals to deliver engaging presentations, convey information clearly, and communicate effectively with colleagues, clients, and stakeholders.

In professional settings, individuals with excellent oral communication skills stand out as effective communicators, team players, and leaders. They can effectively express their ideas, influence decision-making processes, and collaborate with others. This ability to communicate effectively enhances teamwork, productivity, and overall organizational success.

Furthermore, strong oral communication skills are essential in job interviews, as they allow individuals to articulate their qualifications, experiences, and strengths confidently. Employers value candidates who can communicate their ideas effectively, demonstrate active listening skills, and engage in professional conversations.

Moreover, individuals with advanced oral communication abilities often find themselves in leadership roles. Effective leaders inspire and motivate their teams through clear and persuasive communication. They can deliver compelling speeches, conduct impactful meetings, and navigate challenging conversations with tact and confidence.

While oral communication offers numerous benefits, several barriers can hinder its effectiveness. These barriers include:

1. Language and Cultural Differences

Language and cultural differences can pose significant challenges to effective oral communication. When individuals from diverse linguistic and cultural backgrounds interact, differences in language proficiency, vocabulary, accents, and communication styles can create barriers to understanding.

Language barriers can arise when individuals have limited fluency in a shared language or when their native languages differ. This can lead to difficulties in expressing thoughts clearly, understanding complex concepts, and conveying messages accurately.

Cultural differences further compound these challenges. Different cultures have unique communication norms, such as varying levels of directness, preferred tones, and nonverbal cues. These differences can result in misunderstandings, as individuals may interpret messages based on their own cultural context, leading to miscommunication and confusion.

To overcome language and cultural barriers, individuals must foster open-mindedness, patience, and cultural sensitivity. Actively listening, seeking clarification when needed, and using simple and clear language can aid in bridging these gaps. Additionally, embracing cultural diversity and developing intercultural communication skills can enhance understanding and promote effective communication across language and cultural differences.

2. Lack of Clarity

One of the barriers to effective oral communication is the lack of clarity. When communication lacks clarity, it becomes difficult for the message to be understood accurately by the receiver.

There are various factors that can contribute to a lack of clarity. Unclear articulation, the use of complex or unfamiliar vocabulary, and poor sentence structure can all hinder the clear expression of ideas. Additionally, speaking too quickly or mumbling can further obscure the message and make it challenging for the listener to comprehend.

Ambiguity in conveying thoughts or ideas can also lead to a lack of clarity. Vague statements, generalizations, or incomplete information can leave the listener confused and unsure of the intended meaning.

To overcome the barrier of lack of clarity, it is essential to strive for clear and concise communication. This involves enunciating words clearly, using simple and precise language, and structuring sentences in a logical manner. Providing specific details, examples, and relevant context can also enhance clarity and improve understanding.

Active listening on the part of both the speaker and the listener is crucial in addressing clarity issues. The listener should ask for clarification when needed, while the speaker should be receptive to feedback and be willing to rephrase or elaborate on their message if necessary.

3. Distractions and Noise

Distractions and excessive noise can significantly impede effective oral communication. When there are distractions present or high levels of noise in the environment, it becomes challenging for both the speaker and the listener to focus and engage in clear communication.

External distractions, such as background noise, interruptions, or visual disturbances, divert attention away from the conversation at hand. These distractions can disrupt the flow of communication and make it difficult for individuals to concentrate on the message being conveyed.

Similarly, excessive noise can drown out or distort the speaker’s voice, making it harder for the listener to hear and understand the spoken words. Whether it’s loud machinery, crowded spaces, or a chaotic environment, excessive noise hampers effective communication by creating barriers to receiving the message accurately.

To address distractions and noise in oral communication, it is important to create an environment conducive to effective communication. Minimizing external disturbances, finding quiet spaces, and utilizing tools like noise-canceling technology can help reduce the impact of distractions.

Active listening skills play a crucial role in overcoming distractions and noise. By focusing attention on the speaker, maintaining eye contact, and using nonverbal cues to show engagement, individuals can enhance their understanding of the message despite external distractions.

Additionally, employing clear and articulate speech, speaking at an appropriate volume, and utilizing effective vocal techniques can help combat the effects of excessive noise, ensuring that the message is conveyed as clearly as possible.

4. Nonverbal Inconsistencies

Nonverbal inconsistencies can pose challenges to effective oral communication. When there is a disconnect between verbal and nonverbal cues, it can create confusion and hinder the accurate interpretation of the message.

Nonverbal communication encompasses facial expressions, body language, gestures, and tone of voice, among other elements. These nonverbal cues often convey emotions, attitudes, and intentions that complement or contradict the spoken words. Inconsistencies between the verbal and nonverbal aspects of communication can lead to mixed messages and misinterpretations.

For example, if a person says they are excited about a topic but their facial expression and body language appear disinterested or bored, the listener may feel uncertain about the speaker’s true feelings. Inconsistencies between the tone of voice and the words used can also lead to confusion or skepticism.

To overcome nonverbal inconsistencies, it is crucial to be aware of and align one’s nonverbal cues with the intended message. This involves paying attention to facial expressions, maintaining appropriate eye contact, using gestures that support the spoken words, and adopting a tone of voice that matches the intended emotion or message.

Active observation and interpretation of the nonverbal cues of others are equally important. By being attentive to the speaker’s body language, facial expressions, and tone of voice, the listener can gain a more complete understanding of the intended message and reduce the chances of misinterpretation.

Moreover, open and clear communication can help address nonverbal inconsistencies. Encouraging feedback and creating a safe space for open dialogue allows both the speaker and the listener to express concerns or seek clarification regarding any perceived inconsistencies.

By striving for congruence between verbal and nonverbal communication, individuals can enhance the effectiveness of their oral communication, build trust, and promote better understanding between all parties involved.

5. Emotional Barriers

Emotional barriers can present significant obstacles to effective oral communication. When individuals experience strong emotions, such as stress, anxiety, or personal biases, it can impact their ability to communicate effectively and hinder the smooth flow of information.

Stress and anxiety can create mental and emotional blocks that interfere with the clear expression of thoughts and ideas. These emotions may cause individuals to stumble over their words, lose their train of thought, or struggle to articulate their message coherently. Additionally, excessive nervousness can lead to a lack of confidence, which further hampers effective communication.

Personal biases, whether conscious or unconscious, can also serve as emotional barriers. Preconceived notions, prejudices, or judgments about certain individuals or topics can affect one’s ability to listen objectively or respond in a fair and open-minded manner. These biases can lead to misinterpretation, miscommunication, and strained relationships.

To overcome emotional barriers, it is important to manage and regulate emotions effectively. Techniques such as deep breathing, mindfulness, and positive self-talk can help individuals calm their nerves and reduce anxiety before engaging in oral communication. Seeking support from trusted individuals or professional resources can also be beneficial in addressing and managing emotional barriers.

Practicing active listening and empathy plays a crucial role in overcoming personal biases. By consciously suspending judgment and actively seeking to understand others’ perspectives, individuals can foster a more inclusive and open communication environment.

Creating a safe and supportive atmosphere that encourages emotional expression can also help mitigate emotional barriers. When individuals feel comfortable sharing their thoughts and emotions without fear of judgment or criticism, it promotes honest and authentic communication.

By acknowledging and addressing emotional barriers, individuals can enhance their ability to communicate effectively, build stronger relationships, and promote a more inclusive and empathetic communication culture.

6. Lack of Active Listening

One of the barriers to effective oral communication is the lack of active listening. Active listening involves fully engaging with the speaker, comprehending the message, and responding appropriately. When individuals fail to actively listen, it hinders their ability to understand and interpret the message accurately.

Several factors contribute to a lack of active listening. Distractions, such as external noises or personal thoughts, can divert attention away from the speaker and disrupt the listening process. Additionally, a mindset focused on preparing a response rather than genuinely understanding the speaker’s message can hinder active listening.

When individuals do not actively listen, they may miss crucial information, misinterpret the speaker’s intent, or respond inappropriately. This can lead to misunderstandings, ineffective communication, and strained relationships.

To overcome the barrier of lack of active listening, individuals should cultivate mindful listening habits. This involves giving undivided attention to the speaker, maintaining eye contact, and refraining from interrupting or formulating responses prematurely. Actively engaging with the speaker through nonverbal cues, such as nodding or providing affirming gestures, demonstrates interest and encourages further communication.

Paraphrasing or summarizing the speaker’s points can help confirm understanding and promote clarity. Asking relevant questions and seeking clarification when needed also demonstrate active engagement and a genuine desire to comprehend the message.

Moreover, cultivating empathy and putting oneself in the speaker’s shoes enhances active listening. This involves actively trying to understand the speaker’s perspective, emotions, and underlying message, allowing for more meaningful and effective communication.

By practicing active listening, individuals can overcome this barrier and foster effective oral communication. Active listening promotes understanding, builds trust, and enhances the overall quality of communication exchanges.

7. Lack of Feedback

The absence of feedback can be a significant barrier to effective oral communication. Feedback plays a crucial role in the communication process as it allows individuals to gauge the effectiveness of their message, make necessary adjustments, and ensure mutual understanding between the speaker and the listener.

When there is a lack of feedback, individuals may not be aware of how their message is being received or understood by the listener. Without this valuable input, it becomes challenging to assess the clarity, impact, and overall effectiveness of their communication.

Feedback provides valuable insights and helps individuals identify any areas of improvement in their oral communication skills. It allows for the identification of potential misunderstandings, unclear explanations, or missed opportunities to connect with the listener.

Additionally, the absence of feedback limits the opportunity for individuals to learn from their communication experiences and refine their skills. Constructive feedback provides valuable guidance and enables individuals to enhance their communication strategies, adapt their approach, and better align their message with the needs and preferences of the audience.

To overcome the barrier of lack of feedback, it is essential to actively seek and encourage feedback from the listener. This can be done by explicitly inviting the listener to share their thoughts, asking specific questions about the clarity or effectiveness of the message, or requesting suggestions for improvement.

Creating a safe and supportive communication environment is crucial for encouraging honest and constructive feedback. By fostering an atmosphere where feedback is welcomed and valued, individuals can promote a culture of continuous learning and improvement in their oral communication skills.

Additionally, individuals can seek feedback through self-reflection and self-assessment. Recording and reviewing their own communication performances, analyzing strengths and weaknesses, and seeking resources for self-improvement can help compensate for the lack of external feedback.

By recognizing the importance of feedback and actively seeking it, individuals can overcome this barrier and enhance the effectiveness of their oral communication. Feedback serves as a valuable tool for growth, learning, and improving communication skills.

Tips for Effective Oral Communication

Effective oral communication is a valuable skill that can greatly enhance personal and professional interactions. Whether you’re delivering a presentation, engaging in a conversation, or participating in a meeting, here are some tips to improve your oral communication skills:

1. Prepare and Organize

Effective preparation and organization play a crucial role in achieving success in various aspects of life. Whether it’s tackling a project, managing your time, or embarking on a new endeavor, having a well-thought-out plan and maintaining order can significantly enhance productivity and outcomes.

Preparation serves as the foundation for success. It allows us to set clear goals, identify potential obstacles, and devise strategies to overcome them.

By investing time and effort into planning, we can enhance our efficiency, minimize errors, and optimize the use of resources. Furthermore, preparation instills confidence and a sense of control, enabling us to tackle challenges with a proactive mindset.

2. Active Listening

Active listening is a fundamental aspect of effective communication. It involves fully engaging with the speaker and comprehending their message in order to respond appropriately.

Active listening goes beyond simply hearing the words spoken; it encompasses understanding the speaker’s perspective, emotions, and underlying message.

3. Practice Clear Articulation

Clear articulation is an essential skill that greatly contributes to successful communication. Whether we are expressing our thoughts, conveying information, or engaging in meaningful discussions, the ability to communicate clearly ensures that our message is understood accurately.

Clear articulation serves as the cornerstone of effective communication. When we express ourselves with clarity, we ensure that our message is accurately conveyed and understood by others. This helps to prevent misunderstandings, confusion, and misinterpretations that can hinder effective collaboration and productivity.

Additionally, clear articulation fosters active listening, as it enables others to engage with our ideas more attentively.

4. Nonverbal Communication

Nonverbal communication refers to the exchange of information through gestures, facial expressions, body language, and other nonverbal cues.

It plays a crucial role in conveying messages, expressing emotions, and establishing connections in various social and professional interactions.

Understanding and utilizing nonverbal communication effectively can significantly enhance your overall communication skills.

5. Seek Feedback

In the pursuit of personal and professional growth, seeking feedback plays a vital role. Feedback provides valuable insights, perspectives, and suggestions that help us identify areas for improvement and refine our skills.

Seeking feedback is essential for continuous improvement. It allows us to gain an outside perspective on our actions, behaviors, and outcomes.

Feedback helps us identify blind spots, uncover potential areas of growth, and understand how our actions impact others. By seeking feedback, we demonstrate humility and a commitment to personal and professional development.

Role of Nonverbal Communication

Nonverbal communication significantly contributes to effective oral communication. While words convey explicit meaning, nonverbal cues add depth and nuance to the message.

Body language, facial expressions, hand gestures, and tone of voice all influence the way a message is received and interpreted.

Nonverbal communication complements verbal communication by enhancing clarity, expressing emotions, and emphasizing certain points.

Paying attention to nonverbal cues can help individuals gauge the listener’s reactions, adapt their message accordingly, and establish a stronger connection.

Technology’s Impact on Oral Communication

Advancements in technology have revolutionized oral communication in several ways. The widespread use of smartphones, video conferencing platforms, and instant messaging applications has made communication more accessible, efficient, and convenient.

Technological tools have bridged geographical barriers, enabling individuals to communicate seamlessly across distances. Features such as video calls, screen sharing, and real-time messaging facilitate collaboration and enhance the quality of oral communication in virtual settings.

However, it is important to strike a balance between technological reliance and face-to-face interactions. While technology offers convenience, it can also hinder the development of essential interpersonal skills and nonverbal communication cues.

Improving Oral Communication Skills

Enhancing oral communication skills requires consistent effort and practice. Consider the following strategies to improve your verbal abilities:

1. Join Toastmasters or Public Speaking Clubs

Participating in public speaking clubs like Toastmasters provides a supportive environment for practicing and refining your oral communication skills. These clubs offer opportunities to deliver speeches, receive constructive feedback, and gain confidence.

2. Take Communication Skills Courses

Enroll in communication skills courses or workshops that focus on enhancing verbal abilities. These programs provide valuable insights, practical exercises, and personalized feedback to help you become a better communicator.

3. Engage in Debates and Discussions

Participate in debates, discussions, and group activities that encourage active communication. Engaging in such interactions helps develop critical thinking, persuasive speaking, and the ability to articulate your thoughts effectively.

4. Record and Review Yourself

Record your speeches, presentations, or conversations and review them later. Pay attention to areas where you can improve, such as clarity, tone, and nonverbal cues.

5. Read and Expand Vocabulary

Reading extensively exposes you to diverse vocabulary, enhancing your linguistic skills. Expand your vocabulary by learning new words and practicing their usage in everyday conversations.

Oral communication is a vital aspect of human interaction, enabling the exchange of information, ideas, and emotions. Mastering effective oral communication skills enhances relationships, fosters collaboration, and opens doors to new opportunities. By understanding its importance, types, benefits, and potential barriers, individuals can focus on improving their verbal abilities to navigate personal and professional spheres more effectively.

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Introduction to Communication

Why is it important to communicate well, learning objectives.

By the end of this section, you will be able to:

  • Recognize the importance of communication in gaining a better understanding of yourself and others.
  • Explain how communication skills help you solve problems, learn new things, and build your career.

Communication is key to your success—in relationships, in the workplace, as a citizen of your country, and across your lifetime. Your ability to communicate comes from experience, and experience can be an effective teacher, but this text and the related communication course will offer you a wealth of experiences gathered from professional speakers across their lifetimes. You can learn from the lessons they’ve learned and be a more effective communicator right out of the gate.

Effective communication can be thought of as a problem solving activity in which individuals may address the following questions:

  • What is the situation?
  • What are some possible communication strategies?
  • What is the best course of action?
  • What is the best way to design the chosen message?
  • What is the best way to deliver the message?

In this book, we will examine this problem solving process and help you learn to apply it in the kinds of situations you are likely to encounter.

Communication Influences Your Thinking about Yourself and Others

We all share a fundamental drive to communicate. Communication can be defined as the process of understanding and sharing meaning (Pearson & Nelson, 2000, p.6). You share meaning in what you say and how you say it, both in oral and written forms. If you could not communicate, what would life be like? A series of never-ending frustrations? Not being able to ask for what you need or even to understand the needs of others?

Being unable to communicate might even mean losing a part of yourself, for you communicate your self-concept —your sense of self and awareness of who you are—in many ways. Do you like to write? Do you find it easy to make a phone call to a stranger or to speak to a room full of people? Perhaps someone told you that you don’t speak clearly or your grammar needs improvement. Does that make you more or less likely to want to communicate? For some, it may be a positive challenge, while for others it may be discouraging. But in all cases, your ability to communicate is central to your self-concept.

Take a look at your clothes. What are the brands you are wearing? What do you think they say about you? Do you feel that certain styles of shoes, jewelry, tattoos, music, or even automobiles express who you are? Part of your self-concept may be that you express yourself through texting, or through writing longer documents like essays and research papers, or through the way you speak.

On the other side of the coin, your communications skills help you to understand others—not just their words, but also their tone of voice, their nonverbal gestures, or the format of their written documents provide you with clues about who they are and what their values and priorities may be. Active listening and reading are also part of being a successful communicator.

Communication Influences How You Learn

When you were an infant, you learned to talk over a period of many months. When you got older, you didn’t learn to ride a bike, drive a car, or even text a message on your cell phone in one brief moment. You need to begin the process of improving your speaking and writing with the frame of mind that it will require effort, persistence, and self-correction.

You learn to speak in public by first having conversations, then by answering questions and expressing your opinions in class, and finally by preparing and delivering a “stand-up” speech. Similarly, you learn to write by first learning to read, then by writing and learning to think critically. Your speaking and writing are reflections of your thoughts, experience, and education. Part of that combination is your level of experience listening to other speakers, reading documents and styles of writing, and studying formats similar to what you aim to produce.

As you study communication, you may receive suggestions for improvement and clarification from speakers and writers more experienced than yourself. Take their suggestions as challenges to improve; don’t give up when your first speech or first draft does not communicate the message you intend. Stick with it until you get it right. Your success in communicating is a skill that applies to almost every field of work, and it makes a difference in your relationships with others.

Remember, luck is simply a combination of preparation and timing. You want to be prepared to communicate well when given the opportunity. Each time you do a good job, your success will bring more success.

Communication Represents You and Your Employer

You want to make a good first impression on your friends and family, instructors, and employer. They all want you to convey a positive image, as it reflects on them. In your career, you will represent your business or company in spoken and written form. Your professionalism and attention to detail will reflect positively on you and set you up for success.

In both oral and written situations, you will benefit from having the ability to communicate clearly. These are skills you will use for the rest of your life. Positive improvements in these skills will have a positive impact on your relationships, your prospects for employment, and your ability to make a difference in the world.

Communication Skills Are Desired by Business and Industry

Oral and written communication proficiencies are consistently ranked in the top ten desirable skills by employer surveys year after year. In fact, high-powered business executives sometimes hire consultants to coach them in sharpening their communication skills. According to the National Association of Colleges and Employers  (2009),  the following are the top five personal qualities or skills potential employers seek:

  • Communication skills (verbal and written)
  • Strong work ethic
  • Teamwork skills (works well with others, group communication)
  • Analytical skills

Knowing this, you can see that one way for you to be successful and increase your promotion potential is to increase your abilities to speak and write effectively.

Business Writing 1

In September 2004, the National Commission on Writing for America’s Families, Schools, and Colleges published a study on 120 human resource directors titled Writing: A Ticket to Work…Or a Ticket Out, A Survey of Business Leaders . The study found that “writing is both a ‘marker’ of high-skill, high-wage, professional work and a ‘gatekeeper’ with clear equity implications,” said Bob Kerrey, president of New School University in New York and chair of the commission. “People unable to express themselves clearly in writing limit their opportunities for professional, salaried employment” ( The College Board, 2004). 

On the other end of the spectrum, it is estimated that over forty million Americans are illiterate, or unable to functionally read or write. If you are reading this book, you may not be part of an at-risk group in need of basic skill development, but you still may need additional training and practice as you raise your skill level.

An individual with excellent communication skills is an asset to every organization. No matter what career you plan to pursue, learning to express yourself professionally in speech and in writing will help you get there.

Key Takeaway

Communication forms a part of your self-concept, and it helps you understand yourself and others, solve problems and learn new things, and build your career.

THINK ABOUT HOW THIS APPLIES TO YOU

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Frantically Speaking

13 Reasons Why Communication Is Important In Life

Hrideep barot.

  • Public Speaking

importance of communication

From all the interpersonal skills important in life, communication is undoubtedly of primary import. 

Why, you ask? 

Well, communication is the basis of all human interaction. It is how we pass information to other people, and in turn, receive and interpret what is being said back to us. 

This process is not unique to human beings. Animals–as well as plants–have their own way of communicating with members of their own species, and it is this medium of sharing information and knowledge that allows most species to thrive and survive in the environment. 

For human beings, who are social creatures at their most basic level, communication is of even more importance. 

Communication is an indispensable component of life, be it in a professional or personal setting.

In the professional setting, effective communication helps enhance employee productivity, boost team-building, and reduces turnover rates. In the personal setting, communication helps foster stronger relationships, build better trust, and provides new opportunities. 

We will delve deeper into these points below. But first…

What is communication? 

What does communication mean to you? 

Now whatever answer you came up with, imagine a world without it, and you will get a pretty decent idea of what communication at its essence means. 

A more dictionary-esque definition of communication is ‘Communication is the act or process of transferring information from one place, person or group to another.’ 

For communication to take place, there must be three essential components: the sender, a medium, and the receiver. 

There are many different types of communication. These include: 

  • Verbal Communication: Sharing of information through verbal means i.e speech. 
  • Non-Verbal Communication: Community that takes place through means other than spoken language. For instance, body language, eye contact, posture, etc.
  • Written Communication: Communication that takes place where the encoding of a message is done in written form i.e through pen and paper. 

All three forms of communication play a key role in our life. Two broad areas of life where effective communication skills play a key role are workplace and everyday life. The importance of communication in these two areas has been elaborated on below.

Importance Of Communication In Workplace 

workplace communication

1. Increases Employee Productivity 

Effective communication enhances employee productivity and motivation. Employees who receive regular communication from leaders tend to be more motivated, interested, and productive than the ones who are left to their own devices and receive a negligible amount of guidance. 

Also, effective communication between employees and different departments makes for the smoother functioning of an organization, thereby increasing its overall performance and productivity. 

2. Improves Crisis Management 

Crisis is an inevitable part of life. It is especially common in workplaces that operate in dangerous or risky environments. 

Effective communication is imperative to successfully get through any potential crisis that might occur in the workplace, be it one rooted in the physical world or the mental one. 

The key to effective communication during a crisis is to have conversations with the involved stakeholders. Whether it’s our team mates, customers or a third party, we need to build up the ability to listen with intent instead of waiting for our turn to speak. We’ve created an entire video on how we can listen without arguing which we highly recommend you check out:

3. Boosts Knowledge Sharing & Innovation 

Knowledge, if kept to oneself and never shared with the world, tends to lose its worth. It is only by sharing ideas, information, and knowledge that one can expand and improve on them, as well as figure out how to apply them to everyday life. 

Effective and regular communication, between different departments as well as between the management and employees, is key for sharing & expanding knowledge as well as applying this knowledge for generating innovative ideas. 

4. Promotes Team Building 

Team building is an essential component of any workplace or organization. 

And the basis of this process is communication. It is only through effective, honest, and regular communication that members of a team–be it a permanent or temporary one–can learn to trust each other and work effectively. 

Breaking down of communication between members is often a sign of breaking down of a team. 

5. Enhances Employee Satisfaction

We all know that consumer satisfaction is imperative for the success of any company. However, equally important is the satisfaction of the employees that contribute to the effective functioning of the organization. 

If employees are not allowed to have a voice and feel like their opinions are not being given due importance or simply heard, then there is a drastic drop in employee satisfaction. 

This will ultimately lead to the company suffering in the long run, as dissatisfied employees tend to face a decrease in work motivation and overall productivity. 

6. Reduces Absenteeism and Turnover Rates 

Another reason why communication is of utmost importance in a workplace is that it plays a key role in reducing employee absenteeism as well as decreasing turnover rates. 

Employees that receive honest communication tend to feel more valued, involved, and important. Not only this, but relationships are key for making a worker feel more connected to their place of work.

It is only through regular and meaningful communication that employees can build strong relationships with each other, which is of primary importance in any workplace. 

Importance Of Communication In Everyday Life 

human communication

1. Building Trust & Relationships

One of the primary reasons why communication is imperative is because it helps foster stronger relationships and build trust between people. 

A key thing to note here is that communication is not a one-way process. That is, while speaking is an essential component of communication, listening is also an indispensable one. 

So, if you wish to forge stronger relationships with people, don’t just talk to them, but also listen to what they’re saying.

2. Opens Up New Doors Of Opportunities

Communication is not just a medium to share and receive information, it is also a skill set that is highly appreciated and sought after in all fields of life. 

Effective communication skills are given primary importance while selecting job and college applicants.

Not only this, but simply being more effective communicators makes it easier to seek out opportunities yourself, and to grab an opportunity when it presents itself. 

3. Develops Your Personality 

Another reason why communication is imperative in everyday life is that it helps build and enhance your personality and self. 

This is because, through communication, you are better able to navigate the world and exploring new and challenging situations. You also meet new people, many of whom might have different opinions, views, and experiences. 

This makes you grow as a person, and discover who you truly are.

4. Helps Solve Conflicts 

Communication is the best way to solve any conflict that might arise in your life or relationships. 

Not only this, but in most cases, communication is an excellent way to avoid any conflict from arising in the first place.

Communication also helps gain better knowledge and understanding of another person. It helps you get your point across clearly. Effective communication also helps avoid any misunderstanding and to quickly solve any that might arise. 

Indeed, effective, honest and regular communication is the basis of any successful and long-term relationship.

5. Helps Express Your Ideas & Personal Needs 

Another important reason why communication is so important in life is rooted in the basic definition of communication itself: it helps clearly tell others what you want, and express any ideas you might wish to share with them.

This is not a trivial requirement: if you are unable to express your ideas and wants, you won’t be able to achieve them. 

So, say, if you have an awesome idea about how you can level up the trip you’re going to be taking with your friends tomorrow…

Well, you can’t very well do anything about it until you actually tell your friends about it, right?

6. Makes You Stand Out From The Crowd 

There are many things that set a leader apart, however, communication is definitely one of the most important skills that you require in your life to become a leader. Think of every great leader from history, and you’ll most likely end up discovering that they were great communicators. 

Throughout history, great leaders were known for their exceptional communication abilities. Critical thinking, an integral part of effective communication, enables leaders to analyze complex situations and make informed decisions. Developing strong communication and critical thinking skills is essential for aspiring leaders. In academia, resources like a  free essay on critical thinking  can further enhance these skills, setting individuals apart and enhancing their leadership potential.

There are many reasons why leaders require good communication skills, and why these skills are in most cases the pre-requisite of landing a leading position in life. Most of these reasons have been listed in the points above. 

7. Helps Improve Decision Making 

In almost every sphere of life, decision-making is a process that plays a key role. People make decisions every single day for a variety of purposes.

However, the quality of those decisions is not always the same. That is, not every decision that people take will lead to the desired outcome. Sometimes, our decisions might backfire and lead to an undesired outcome as well. 

One way of reducing the chances of our decisions leading to undesired–sometimes even negative outcomes–is through developing our communication skills. 

This is because, when you communicate effectively, you receive more information than you otherwise would’ve. Not only this, but the quality of your information also increases.

This increase in the quantity and quality of information ultimately leads to the quality of your decision-making to improve, as you now have more information to draw upon before making your decision. 

6 Easy Tips To Develop Your Communication Skills 

1. develop active listening .

Active listening is different than listening or its counterpart, hearing. Active listening not only involves simple listening but also engaging with other people by responding to what they’re saying and asking follow-up questions to show that you’re actually listening. 

This process is an excellent way to develop not just your listening abilities, but also boosts the quality as well as the quantity of your interaction with others, which ultimately boosts your communication skills.

2. Ask For Feedback 

Another way to develop your communication skills is by asking people about them. And no, we’re not asking you to hand out questionnaires to strangers. 

Rather, what we want you to do is reach out to people whom you’re close with and feel comfortable around, and ask them what they feel about your communication with them.

Take into account everything they mention, and use the information to improve the quality of your next interaction. 

3. Practice Public Speaking 

Public Speaking is a great way to develop your communication skills. This is because the basis of a public speaking event–say, delivering a speech in front of an audience–involves effective communication between the speaker and the audience. 

So, don’t pass on any opportunities to speak in front of a crowd, even if the idea seems a little intimidating at first.

In fact, I’d suggest you actually look up public speaking opportunities and begin your journey to become an awesome communicator! 

4. Pause Before Speaking 

When someone is talking with you or asking you a question, don’t say the first thing that pops up in your mind. Chances are, it doesn’t sound as good in the real world as it did in your head. 

Instead, let the other person finish. Pause for a second. Take a moment to understand what they’re actually trying to say. Then respond. 

This is a great way not just to boost your communication skills, but to also avoid any misunderstandings from occurring because of ineffective communication. 

5. Pay Attention To What Your Body Is Saying 

Non-Verbal communication is just as important as verbal communication. However, you’ll be surprised at how many people neglect this important component of public speaking. 

In fact, sometimes the body-language language of a person can say even more than what the person is actually saying. Indeed, it can sometimes even contradict a person’s actual words. 

So, next time you’re communicating with someone, pay attention to your body language. Ask yourself: what is your posture or eye contact saying that you’re not, and how can you use it more effectively to improve your communication with this person? 

For more information on the importance of body language in communication, check out our article on Body Language And Its Contribution To The Process Of Communication.

6. Developing Empathy 

Empathy is different from sympathy, as it involves actually putting yourself in someone else’s shoes and seeing the world from their perspective. 

It is an essential skill in many areas of life. However, in the world of public speaking, it becomes even more imperative. 

This is because understanding how other people feel will help you better understand how to communicate your ideas in such a way that the other person is able to derive more meaning from them. It also helps you improve your understanding of what another person is saying. 

There are many ways of developing your empathy. 

For example, actually visualizing yourself in someone else’s shoes is one way of improving your empathetic skills. 

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Conclusion 

To sum up, communication skills are imperative in almost all spheres of life. In professional speaking, communication skills are often the basis of the organization itself.

They’re imperative for the smooth functioning of the institution, to improve employee productivity, and to provide them with a better experience, as well as for the overall success of the institution.

In personal life, too, communication skills are essential to foster better relationships, avoiding misunderstandings, achieving a better position, and growing and developing as an individual.

Thus, it would not be erroneous to say that the importance of communication skills goes beyond merely effective communication. 

Hrideep Barot

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importance of oral communication in daily life

The Importance Of Oral Communication

The South Korean film Parasite made history at the 2020 Oscars when it became the first non-English language film to…

683. 10 Behavioral Interview Questions To Prepare For

The South Korean film Parasite made history at the 2020 Oscars when it became the first non-English language film to win the Academy Award for Best Picture. For his acceptance speech, director Bong Joon Ho said, “Once you overcome the one-inch-tall barrier of subtitles, you will be introduced to so many more amazing films.”

Bong was trying to change the way people perceive foreign language films. And he did. His words resonated not just with the South Korean audience, but with moviegoers worldwide.

Not every speaker leaves a lasting impression on their audience. But imagine if you could always speak with impact in your professional setting.

Strong oral communication is one of the best skills you can have in the workplace. Not only can you move, persuade and encourage others to think and act differently, your speaking skills also help you stand out among your co-workers.

Let’s explore the importance of different types of oral communication you need to become a competent professional.

What Is Oral Communication?

Importance of oral communication, types of oral communication.

Oral communication is communicating with spoken words. It’s a verbal form of communication where you communicate your thoughts, present ideas and share information. Examples of oral communication are conversations with friends, family or colleagues, presentations and speeches.

Oral communication helps to build trust and reliability. The process of oral communication is more effective than an email or a text message. For important and sensitive conversations—such as salary negotiations and even conflict resolution, you can rely on oral communication to get your point across, avoid misunderstandings and minimize confusion.

In a professional setting, effective oral communication is important because it is built on transparency, understanding and trust. Your oral communication skills can boost morale, encourage improved performance and promote teamwork .

Here are some benefits of oral communication:

It saves time by letting you convey your message directly to the other person and getting their response immediately.

It’s the most secure form of communication for critical issues and important information

It helps to resolve conflicts with face-to-face communication

It’s a more transparent form of communication as it lets you  gauge how others react to your words

There are different examples of oral communication in a business setting. You need several oral communication skills for career advancement. Let’s look at different types of oral communication:

Elevator Pitch

Imagine you meet the CEO of your organization in the elevator. Now, you have 30 seconds to introduce yourself before they get out on the next floor. This is your elevator pitch. It’s a form of oral communication where you have to succinctly explain who you are and what you want from the other person.

Formal Conversations

These are common at work because you have to constantly interact with your managers, coworkers and stakeholders such as clients and customers. Formal conversations are crisp, direct and condensed. You have to get your point across in a few words because everyone has only limited time to spare.

Informal Conversations

These are conversations that you have with your team members or friends and family. They are mostly without an agenda. You can talk about your day, what you’re going to eat for lunch or discuss weekend plans. These are friendly conversations peppered with light banter.

Business Presentations

This is where you need to make the best use of your speaking skills. Public speaking is an important skill to develop if you want to command a room full of people. For this, you need to leverage Harappa’s LEP and PAM Frameworks as well as the Four Ps of Pitch, Projection, Pace and Pauses.

Speeches are important in businesses like event management or community outreach. In a corporate setup, speeches are reserved for top management and leaders.

Arming yourself with effective oral communication skills will boost your confidence, prepare you for challenging tasks like meeting and impressing clients.

Harappa Education’s Speaking Effectively course is carefully designed to teach you how to improve your communication skills. You’ll learn about both oral and nonverbal communication with important frameworks like the Rule of Three and Aristotle’s Appeals of logic, credibility and emotion. Persuade your audience, deliver well-crafted ideas and connect with others with advanced speaking skills.

Explore topics & skills such as Public Speaking , Verbal Communication , Speaking Skills & Oratory Skills from Harappa Diaries and learn to express your ideas with confidence.

Reskilling Programs

L&D leaders need to look for reskilling programs that meet organizational goals and employee aspirations. The first step to doing this is to understand the skills gaps and identify what’s necessary. An effective reskilling program will be one that is scalable and measurable. Companies need to understand their immediate goals and prepare for future requirements when considering which employees to reskill.

Are you still uncertain about the kind of reskilling program you should opt for?  Speak to our expert   to understand what will work best for your organization and employees.

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The Power of Strong Oral and Written Communication Skills

Learn how to improve your oral and written communication skills by expressing ideas clearly, fostering understanding, and connecting with others.

Oral and written communication skills are essential components of effective interaction, involving both verbal and written forms of conveying information and ideas. 

Oral communication skills encompass the ability to express thoughts, opinions, and information through spoken words, while written communication skills involve conveying messages, instructions, or thoughts using written language. 

Both oral and written communication skills play a pivotal role in expressing ideas clearly, fostering understanding, and connecting with others across different contexts.

Importance of Effective Communication in Various Aspects of Life

Effective communication skills are paramount in personal, professional, and academic spheres. In the workplace, clear oral and written communication enables employees to articulate ideas, collaborate with colleagues, and present their thoughts convincingly to employers or clients. 

Written communication skills are crucial for crafting professional documents such as emails, reports, and cover letters. In academic settings, effective communication aids students in presenting research, participating in discussions, and writing papers. 

Moreover, in everyday life, strong communication skills foster better relationships, facilitate successful interactions, and contribute to overall clarity and understanding in various interactions.

importance of oral communication in daily life

The Importance of Oral Communication Skills

Effective verbal communication in personal relationships.

Building Strong Connections with Others: Oral communication skills are instrumental in establishing meaningful relationships. Through effective verbal communication, individuals can share thoughts, emotions, and experiences, fostering deeper connections and understanding with family, friends, and acquaintances. 

Open and honest conversations enable individuals to connect on a personal level and build trust, enhancing the quality of relationships.

Resolving Conflicts and Misunderstandings: Strong verbal communication skills are essential for addressing conflicts and resolving misunderstandings. 

The ability to express oneself clearly, actively listen, and provide constructive feedback aids in navigating difficult conversations. Individuals with strong oral communication skills can discuss concerns, clarify misunderstandings, and find mutually agreeable solutions, contributing to healthier and more harmonious relationships.

Professional Benefits of Strong Oral Communication

Effective Teamwork and Collaboration: In the professional realm, effective verbal communication skills are crucial for successful teamwork and collaboration. 

The ability to communicate ideas, provide feedback, and actively participate in discussions contributes to a productive work environment. Teams that communicate well can exchange insights, pool talents, and achieve common goals efficiently.

Improved Public Speaking and Presentation Skills: Strong oral communication skills enhance public speaking and presentation abilities. Professionals who can convey information persuasively and engage their audience effectively make impactful presentations. 

Whether delivering a pitch, leading a meeting, or presenting to a large audience, strong verbal communication skills instill confidence and captivate listeners, leaving a lasting impression.

Developing Verbal Communication Skills

Active listening techniques: .

Active listening is a foundational skill for improving oral communication. This technique involves fully engaging with the speaker, giving them your undivided attention, and understanding their message beyond just words. 

By maintaining eye contact, nodding, and asking clarifying questions, you demonstrate your genuine interest and comprehension. Active listening helps foster better connections, minimizes misunderstandings, and allows you to respond thoughtfully.

Enhancing Non-Verbal Communication:

Non-verbal cues, such as facial expressions, gestures, and body language, play a significant role in conveying messages during oral communication. Developing awareness of your non-verbal cues and aligning them with your spoken words enhances your overall communication effectiveness. Positive non-verbal communication signals attentiveness, openness, and confidence, helping you build rapport and establish credibility.

Practicing Effective Speaking and Clarity of Expression:

Practicing effective speaking involves expressing ideas clearly, concisely, and confidently. Focus on articulation, pronunciation, and tone to ensure your words are understood. Using appropriate vocabulary and structuring your sentences coherently adds to your communication clarity. 

Regular practice through discussions, presentations, and even role-playing scenarios can help you refine your speaking skills and overcome any hesitations or stumbling blocks in verbal communication.

The Importance of Written Communication Skills

Written communication in the workplace:.

Effective written communication is essential in professional settings for several reasons. Clear and concise emails and memos ensure that information is conveyed accurately without confusion. 

Professional written reports and documentation contribute to organized and well-documented project management, decision-making, and compliance with industry standards. Strong written communication skills not only reflect your competence but also facilitate seamless communication within the team and with stakeholders.

Personal Benefits of Strong Written Communication:

Developing strong written communication skills has personal benefits beyond the workplace. It enhances your organization and critical thinking abilities as you structure your thoughts logically and coherently. 

Expressing thoughts and ideas effectively in writing allows you to communicate with clarity and precision. This skill is valuable for both formal and informal contexts, from crafting persuasive essays to sharing ideas on social media. Strengthening your written communication skills empowers you to convey your messages with impact and engage with a broader audience.

Developing Written Communication Skills

Understanding the Purpose and Audience: Developing strong written communication skills involves considering the purpose and audience of your writing. Identifying why you are writing and who your target audience is helps tailor your message appropriately. 

Whether it's a formal report, an email to colleagues, or a social media post, knowing your purpose guides your content and tone. For example, writing an informative report for a professional audience requires a different approach than composing a casual email to friends. Understanding your purpose and audience ensures that your written communication is relevant, engaging, and effective.

Organization and Structure in Writing: Effective writing requires proper organization and structure to present ideas coherently. Start with an introduction that captures the reader's attention and outlines the main points. 

Organize the body of your writing logically, presenting ideas in a sequence that flows smoothly. Each paragraph should focus on a single idea, and transitions should link your points seamlessly. 

Conclude with a summary that reinforces your main message or provides a call to action. Well-organized writing guides readers through your content and makes it easier to comprehend and remember.

Effective Use of Grammar, Punctuation, and Vocabulary: Grammatical accuracy, proper punctuation, and varied vocabulary are crucial for clear and effective written communication. 

Grammatical errors and awkward phrasing can detract from your message, leading to confusion or misinterpretation. Correct punctuation enhances the clarity and readability of your writing. 

Additionally, using a diverse range of vocabulary improves the richness and precision of your content. Regularly reviewing grammar rules, practicing proofreading, and expanding your vocabulary are essential steps in enhancing your written communication skills.

Integrating Oral and Written Communication Skills

Bridging the gap between oral and written communication:.

Integrating both oral and written communication skills is essential for effective communication in various contexts. While oral communication allows for immediate interaction and engagement, written communication provides a lasting record and reference. 

Bridging the gap between these skills involves recognizing their complementary nature. For instance, articulating ideas clearly in writing helps structure your thoughts and can serve as a foundation for confident verbal communication. 

Similarly, the ability to express yourself eloquently in speech can translate to persuasive writing. By honing both oral and written communication skills, individuals can convey their ideas comprehensively and adapt to diverse communication scenarios.

The Impact of Effective Communication Skills on Overall Success:

Proficiency in both oral and written communication is a cornerstone of overall success. In professional settings, strong communication skills enhance collaboration, leadership, and the ability to influence others positively. 

Employers often seek candidates with excellent communication skills, as these skills contribute to effective teamwork, client relationships, and project management. Moreover, these skills extend to personal life, fostering better relationships and facilitating efficient interactions in everyday situations.

Mastering effective communication, whether oral or written, empowers individuals to navigate challenges, convey their ideas persuasively, and achieve their goals with confidence.

In today's interconnected world, oral and written communication skills hold immense value. The ability to convey ideas effectively through spoken and written words is pivotal in personal, academic, and professional spheres. 

Strong oral communication skills enable meaningful interactions, resolving conflicts, and fostering connections. Meanwhile, proficient written communication skills allow for clear documentation, organized thought expression, and impactful written reports.

The journey towards mastering oral and written communication skills is ongoing. Continuously refining these skills offers numerous benefits, enhancing career prospects, building strong relationships, and contributing to personal growth. 

Embrace opportunities to enhance your communication abilities, whether by practicing active listening, refining your writing style, or engaging in public speaking. 

By prioritizing the development of these skills, you empower yourself to effectively navigate various communication scenarios, enrich your interactions, and contribute positively to your personal and professional life.

Introducing Dive: The Perfect AI Companion for 2023

Dive is your ultimate AI assistant for supercharging your meetings. Dive seamlessly integrates with popular video conferencing platforms, revolutionizing your meeting experience. 

With automated task allocation, real-time transcription , and insightful analytics, Dive ensures your meetings are efficient, engaging, and result-driven. Elevate collaboration and productivity with Dive and make every meeting count.

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Oral Communication

What is oral communication.

Oral communication refers to the process of exchanging information, thoughts, and ideas through spoken words. It is a soft skill that allows individuals to express themselves effectively and convey messages to others in a clear and concise manner.

Importance of Oral Communication

Oral communication plays a crucial role in both personal and professional settings. It facilitates effective interactions, enhances relationships, and promotes understanding among individuals. Proficient oral communication skills are highly valued by employers, as they contribute to teamwork, problem-solving, and collaboration.

Key Elements of Oral Communication

Effective oral communication involves various key elements, including clarity, coherence, conciseness, and relevance. Clarity ensures that the message is easily understood by the recipient, while coherence ensures a logical flow of ideas. Conciseness helps convey the message efficiently, avoiding unnecessary and redundant information. Relevance ensures that the information shared is meaningful and applicable to the context.

Verbal and Nonverbal Aspects

Oral communication encompasses both verbal and nonverbal aspects. Verbal communication refers to the use of words, grammar, and language structure to express ideas, while nonverbal communication involves facial expressions, gestures, body language, and tone of voice. Both aspects are important to effectively convey messages, as they provide additional cues and emphasize certain points.

Enhancing Oral Communication Skills

Improving oral communication skills can be achieved through practice and development of specific techniques. Active listening, clarity in speech, organizing thoughts, adapting communication style to the audience, and using appropriate nonverbal cues are some strategies to enhance oral communication.

Applications of Oral Communication

Oral communication is utilized in various settings, such as meetings, presentations, interviews, negotiations, and interpersonal interactions. It is essential for building relationships, resolving conflicts, delivering persuasive speeches, imparting knowledge, and fostering collaboration within teams.

The Importance of Assessing a Candidate's Oral Communication Skills

Assessing a candidate's oral communication skills is crucial for ensuring effective and efficient communication within an organization. By evaluating how well a candidate can express ideas, convey messages, and engage in meaningful conversations, businesses can make informed hiring decisions.

Clear and Effective Communication: Oral communication skills are essential for employees to clearly articulate their thoughts, ideas, and instructions to colleagues, clients, and stakeholders. Assessing a candidate's ability to convey information in a coherent and concise manner is essential for fostering effective collaboration and avoiding misunderstandings.

Professional Presentations and Meetings: Strong oral communication skills are particularly important for individuals who need to conduct presentations, participate in meetings, and engage in discussions. Assessing a candidate's oral communication skills helps ensure they can confidently deliver presentations, actively contribute in meetings, and effectively collaborate with team members.

Customer Interactions and Client Relationships: For roles that involve interacting with customers or building client relationships, assessing a candidate's oral communication skills is vital. The ability to listen actively, understand customer needs, and communicate clearly can greatly impact customer satisfaction and loyalty.

Problem-solving and Conflict Resolution: Effective oral communication is essential for problem-solving and conflict resolution within a team or across departments. By evaluating a candidate's ability to communicate ideas, actively listen to others, and effectively negotiate, businesses can identify individuals who can contribute to a positive and productive work environment.

Assessing Candidates on Oral Communication Skills

Alooba offers a range of tests designed to assess a candidate's oral communication skills effectively. By utilizing these tests, organizations can evaluate the candidate's ability to communicate clearly and effectively in various scenarios. Here are some test types available on Alooba that are relevant to assessing oral communication skills:

Written Response Test : This test allows candidates to provide a written response or essay on a given topic. It assesses the candidate's ability to organize thoughts, convey ideas coherently, and effectively communicate through writing.

Asynchronous Interview : With the Asynchronous Interview test, candidates answer questions by submitting a video response of themselves. This test evaluates not only the candidate's verbal communication skills but also their nonverbal cues, such as body language and tone of voice.

By incorporating these assessment methods into the hiring process, organizations can gain valuable insights into a candidate's oral communication abilities, ensuring they select individuals who can effectively express themselves and engage in meaningful conversations within the workplace.

Subtopics within Oral Communication

Oral communication encompasses various subtopics, each playing a crucial role in effective interpersonal and professional interactions. Here are some key areas covered under oral communication:

Verbal Clarity : Verbal clarity focuses on the candidate's ability to express ideas, thoughts, and information clearly and concisely. It assesses their proficiency in using appropriate language, grammar, and vocabulary to ensure their message is easily understood by others.

Listening Skills : Active listening is an integral part of oral communication. Assessing a candidate's listening skills involves evaluating their ability to pay attention, comprehend information, and respond appropriately. Strong listening skills enable effective understanding and facilitate meaningful conversations.

Public Speaking : Public speaking evaluates a candidate's ability to effectively present information and ideas before an audience. This subtopic assesses their confidence, articulation, use of body language, and overall ability to engage and captivate listeners.

Interpersonal Communication : Interpersonal communication focuses on how well a candidate can interact and communicate with others on a personal level. It assesses their ability to build rapport, establish trust, and effectively convey thoughts and ideas in one-on-one or small group settings.

Nonverbal Communication : Nonverbal communication includes facial expressions, gestures, body language, and tone of voice. Evaluating a candidate's nonverbal communication skills helps understand their ability to convey emotions, maintain engagement, and make a positive impact during conversations.

By assessing these subtopics within oral communication, organizations can identify candidates who possess strong communication skills and can effectively contribute to the success of the team and the organization as a whole.

Oral communication is utilized in various contexts, both in personal and professional settings. Understanding how oral communication is applied can help individuals and organizations recognize its significance. Here are some common applications of oral communication:

Meetings and Presentations : Oral communication is crucial during meetings, where individuals discuss ideas, provide updates, and make decisions. It also plays a vital role in presentations, enabling speakers to share information, persuade audiences, and engage with listeners effectively.

Negotiations and Conflict Resolution : Effective oral communication is essential during negotiations, allowing parties to express their perspectives, collaborate, and reach agreements. It is also valuable in conflict resolution, helping individuals address conflicts, find common ground, and work towards resolutions.

Customer Service and Sales : Oral communication plays a vital role in customer service, where representatives need to understand customer needs, address inquiries, and provide solutions effectively. In sales, oral communication helps build relationships, highlight product benefits, and close deals through persuasive conversations.

Interviews and Interpersonal Interactions : Oral communication is critical during interviews where candidates communicate their qualifications, skills, and experiences to potential employers. It is also utilized in daily interpersonal interactions, facilitating effective communication with colleagues, supervisors, and clients.

Training and Team Collaboration : Oral communication is employed in training sessions, workshops, and seminars to impart knowledge, share insights, and promote collaborative learning. It is also essential for team collaboration, enabling members to exchange ideas, coordinate tasks, and foster a cohesive working environment.

Understanding the applications of oral communication highlights its significance in various aspects of life. Proficient oral communication skills contribute to successful interactions, effective teamwork, and positive relationships both inside and outside the workplace.

Roles Requiring Good Oral Communication Skills

Certain roles heavily rely on individuals having strong oral communication skills to excel in their responsibilities. These positions involve frequent interactions with colleagues, clients, and stakeholders, making effective communication pivotal. Here are some types of roles that require candidates with excellent oral communication skills:

Insights Analyst : Insights analysts need to effectively communicate their findings and analysis to various stakeholders, including management teams and clients. They must deliver clear and concise insights through reports and presentations, ensuring the information is easily understood.

Marketing Analyst : Marketing analysts collaborate with cross-functional teams and communicate data-driven marketing strategies. They need strong oral communication skills to present campaign performance, share insights, and discuss target audience behaviors effectively.

Product Analyst : Product analysts play a vital role in communicating product ideas, requirements, and user feedback to development teams. They collaborate with stakeholders, providing comprehensive insights to enhance products and drive innovation.

Customer Service Representative : Customer service representatives consistently interact with customers, providing support and addressing inquiries. Effective oral communication skills are crucial in delivering exceptional customer service, ensuring clear understanding and resolution of customer concerns.

Trainer : Trainers rely heavily on oral communication to deliver training sessions, workshops, and presentations to diverse audiences. They must communicate concepts and instructions clearly, ensuring trainees understand and retain the information being shared.

Team Leader : Team leaders need strong oral communication skills to effectively communicate goals, expectations, and feedback to their team members. They facilitate open communication, foster collaboration, and motivate their teams towards success.

Public Speaker : Public speakers rely on their oral communication skills to engage, inform, and inspire audiences during presentations, conferences, and events. They need to deliver memorable speeches with clarity, confidence, and effective storytelling.

Negotiator : Negotiators use their oral communication skills to engage in effective discussions, reach agreements, and resolve conflicts. Strong communication enables them to articulate their position, actively listen, and negotiate mutually beneficial outcomes.

Interviewer : Interviewers rely on their oral communication skills to ask relevant questions, assess candidates' qualifications, and effectively evaluate their fit for a position. They need to conduct interviews that encourage open dialogue and elicit detailed responses.

These roles exemplify the importance of oral communication skills in various professional settings. Organizations seeking individuals for these positions prioritize candidates who can effectively express themselves, engage with others, and contribute to the success of their teams.

Associated Roles

Etl developer.

ETL Developers specialize in the process of extracting data from various sources, transforming it to fit operational needs, and loading it into the end target databases or data warehouses. They play a crucial role in data integration and warehousing, ensuring that data is accurate, consistent, and accessible for analysis and decision-making. Their expertise spans across various ETL tools and databases, and they work closely with data analysts, engineers, and business stakeholders to support data-driven initiatives.

Growth Analyst

The Growth Analyst role involves critical analysis of market trends, consumer behavior, and business data to inform strategic growth and marketing efforts. This position plays a key role in guiding data-driven decisions, optimizing marketing strategies, and contributing to business expansion objectives.

Insights Analyst

Insights Analysts play a pivotal role in transforming complex data sets into actionable insights, driving business growth and efficiency. They specialize in analyzing customer behavior, market trends, and operational data, utilizing advanced tools such as SQL, Python, and BI platforms like Tableau and Power BI. Their expertise aids in decision-making across multiple channels, ensuring data-driven strategies align with business objectives.

Marketing Analyst

Marketing Analysts specialize in interpreting data to enhance marketing efforts. They analyze market trends, consumer behavior, and campaign performance to inform marketing strategies. Proficient in data analysis tools and techniques, they bridge the gap between data and marketing decision-making. Their role is crucial in tailoring marketing efforts to target audiences effectively and efficiently.

Product Analyst

Product Analysts utilize data to optimize product strategies and enhance user experiences. They work closely with product teams, leveraging skills in SQL, data visualization (e.g., Tableau), and data analysis to drive product development. Their role includes translating business requirements into technical specifications, conducting A/B testing, and presenting data-driven insights to inform product decisions. Product Analysts are key in understanding customer needs and driving product innovation.

Product Manager

Product Managers are responsible for the strategy, roadmap, and feature definition of a product or product line. They work at the intersection of business, technology, and user experience, focusing on delivering solutions that meet market needs. Product Managers often have a background in business, engineering, or design, and are skilled in areas such as market research, user experience design, and agile methodologies.

Related Skills

Other names for Oral Communication include Verbal Communication , and Speaking .

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I was at WooliesX (Woolworths) and we used Alooba and it was a highly positive experience. We had a large number of candidates. At WooliesX, previously we were quite dependent on the designed test from the team leads. That was quite a manual process. We realised it would take too much time from us. The time saving is great. Even spending 15 minutes per candidate with a manual test would be huge - hours per week, but with Alooba we just see the numbers immediately.

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We get a high flow of applicants, which leads to potentially longer lead times, causing delays in the pipelines which can lead to missing out on good candidates. Alooba supports both speed and quality. The speed to return to candidates gives us a competitive advantage. Alooba provides a higher level of confidence in the people coming through the pipeline with less time spent interviewing unqualified candidates.

Scott Crowe , Canva ( Lead Recruiter - Data )

How can you accurately assess somebody's technical skills, like the same way across the board, right? We had devised a Tableau-based assessment. So it wasn't like a past/fail. It was kind of like, hey, what do they send us? Did they understand the data or the values that they're showing accurate? Where we'd say, hey, here's the credentials to access the data set. And it just wasn't really a scalable way to assess technical - just administering it, all of it was manual, but the whole process sucked!

Cole Brickley , Avicado ( Director Data Science & Business Intelligence )

The diversity of our pool has definitely improved so we just have many more candidates from just different backgrounds which I am a huge believer in. It makes the team much better, it makes our output much better and gives us more voices in terms of building the best product and service that we can.

Piers Stobbs , Cazoo ( Chief Data Officer )

I wouldn't dream of hiring somebody in a technical role without doing that technical assessment because the number of times where I've had candidates either on paper on the CV, say, I'm a SQL expert or in an interview, saying, I'm brilliant at Excel, I'm brilliant at this. And you actually put them in front of a computer, say, do this task. And some people really struggle. So you have to have that technical assessment.

Mike Yates , The British Psychological Society ( Head of Data & Analytics )

We were very quickly quite surprised with the quality of candidates we would get from Alooba. We ended up hiring eight different analysts via Alooba in about a year's time, which is quite extraordinary for us because we actually have almost never used a recruitment agency for any role. It has been our best outsourcing solution by far.

Oz Har Adir , Vio.com ( Founder & CEO )

For data engineering & analytics these take-home assignments we were doing ourselves are a bit time consuming so we wanted to automate that and also reduce the time candidates were spending on the assessment.

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The Importance of Communication Skills in Everyday Life

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Communication skills are very important for developing human relationships and managing human resources in today's world. 

In your personal life, effective communication skills can smooth your way in your relationships with others by helping you to understand others, and to be understood.

What is the Importance of Communication in Our Daily Life?

Communication plays a vital role in human life. It helps facilitate the exchange of information and knowledge, and develop relationships with others. Therefore, the importance of communication skills in our day-to-day life cannot be underestimated.

What are Communication Skills?

Communication skills are the abilities you use when giving and receiving different types of information.

Communication skills can be defined as the skills used in practical life, whereby a person conveys ideas, concepts, or information to others. Another person, in turn, responds to that message according to his understanding of it.

Communication is the act of transferring information from a person to another. Communication maybe vocally (using voice), written (using printed or digital media such as websites, blogs, books, magazines, etc.), visually (using maps, logos, graphs, or charts), or non-verbally (using body language, tone, the pitch of voice, and gestures).

Communication serves five major goals: informing, expressing feelings, imagining, influencing, and meeting social expectations. Each of these goals is reflected in the form of communication.

Communication skills play a major role in promoting the individual, whether when applying for a job, qualifying for a specific program that depends on competition between him and others, entering one of the elections, proposing to a girl, or sending a meaningful message, etc.

Importance of Communication Skills in Life

Human communication is one of the most important aspects of life. It is an effective means of development adopted between individuals and groups alike.

Communication skills are the abilities that are used when giving and receiving information in its various forms, which enable a person to pass information to other people and to understand what is said to him.

Communication skills have become one of the basic requirements for personal and institutional development. 

Well-developed communication skills are essential for a child's academic success and successful future career. At all levels of education, students should be able to communicate effectively.

Communication skills are an essential leadership function and a major characteristic of a good leader.

Communication skills and effective leadership styles are closely intertwined. Lack of communication skills can make team members uncomfortable and unenthusiastic about their work while good communication skills help a team work together to achieve the desired goals.

Having strong communication skills helps in all aspects of life, from people's professional lives to the transition to their personal lives, and everything that falls in between. All life transactions result from communication.

Communication skills help achieve the goals planned in advance, provide a clear-cut vision about those goals, and achieve good preparation for them in an appropriate environment.

Communication skills are of the utmost importance when providing health care services. Effective communication is bidirectional between patients and healthcare systems.

Communication skills can enable patients and their family members to participate as full partners in their care and are proven to improve adherence to treatment and self-management.

When you are interviewing for a job, the hiring manager may ask you about communication skills. The ability to communicate effectively with superiors, colleagues and employees is essential, regardless of the industry in which you work.

Communication skills are also very important in business. They can help foster a good working relationship between you and your employees, which in turn can improve morale and efficiency.

Communication skills help you develop meaningful relationships with subordinates, change their attitudes, raise their spirits, and seek their cooperation.

Effective communication skills are of great importance, including:

  A person's success in his life is related to his mastery of effective communication skills. According to some studies, 85% of success is attributed to communication skills, and 15% to mastery of work skills.

  Effective communication skills facilitate the behavior of individuals and direct them towards desired matters.

  Align and converge viewpoints, concepts, and ideas, and standardize working methods.

  Help to obtain the required information and data and transfer them to decision-making centers.

  Convey individuals' ideas and perspectives to decision-makers. This leads to a link between individuals' ideas and policy and decision-making centers, thus achieving participation and harmony.

  Give the individual a characteristic of calm, sluggishness, and patience; Which leads him to be wise in launching his decisions and judgments.

  Help make correct decisions and make appropriate and sound judgments without fanaticism or coercion of opinion.

  Strive for the success of relationships, whether on the family, work, or other levels.

  Endeavor to provide the individual with important skills such as listening to the other party with credibility and impartiality; Which makes him such an influential and successful leader.

  Work to reduce conflicts and problems and increase friendships in one's environment; Because poor communication with people is what causes conflict, and effective communication is what succeeds relationships.

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Oral Communication: Definition, Importance and Examples

June 9, 2023 | By Hitesh Bhasin | Filed Under: Management

Oral communication is the way toward communicating information or thoughts by using words.

The incredible oral communication abilities are your pass to accomplishment in the personal, professional as well as the business world. It will also resolve the issues associated with your anxieties or nervousness that you have been facing before going for any job interview or speaking in the public.

Honing your speech and oral communication skills can help you at each phase of your profession. It enables you to verbally exchange your thoughts to one individual or group of people to get favourable outcomes. Such interactions can either be formal or informal.

Formal types of oral communication includes presentations at the business meeting, commencements speeches, classroom lectures, etc. while the informal form of oral communication can be Face to Face conversations, discussions at business meetings, telephone conversations, etc.

In this post, we will dive into the world of oral communication and understand its different forms, tips, and examples so that you can use it adeptly-

Table of Contents

What is Oral Communication?

Whenever an interaction takes place using spoken words, it is termed as oral communication.

No business can ever deny the importance of excellent oral communication. It seems face to face communication is the only significant way of transmitting the information. The modern-day corporate environment seeks people with excellent oral communication skills.

Both small, as well as large businesses, work on conversational management skills to improve the overall efficiency of their organization. This oral communication can take place in several forms; let’s have a look at some of the critical forms of oral business communication . –

Forms of Oral Communication

Forms of Oral Communication

1. Interpersonal

When two or more than two people communicate with each other, the form of oral communication is interpersonal. Such informal communication most often occurs when people meet in a social context.

2. Intrapersonal

Intrapersonal communication occurs when you talk to yourself. Often this form of communication is not emphasized much. People who are about to make any decision often get into intrapersonal oral communication. Intrapersonal oral communication helps and has been found to increase self-awareness and mindfulness.

As the name suggests, such oral communication occurs in groups (mostly small consisting of 5 to 10 people). This form of oral communication is meant for the relationship and the companionship. In the workplace, group communication occurs to discuss on project’s complexities and for working collaboratively.

This form of communication is extremely helpful in getting to know other’s ideas and understand people better than ever.

This form of communication consists of direct interaction between a speaker and his/her audience. Public speaking is the second name assigned to this form of communication. Here the size of the audience can be anything – ranging from merely a few people to hundreds and thousands.

This form of communication requires excellent persuading active listening skills to convey a message to the audience effectively.

Mass communication uses a mode to convey messages from sender to receiver. Here a message is sent from the sender to the people across the world by using different modes like TV, radio, internet, etc.

6. Corporation

All the communications that occur within the corporation are known as corporate communication . From talking to employees to direct conversation among the co-workers, everything falls under the same domain.

A good and healthy corporate communication is beneficial for all-round development of the organization.

7. Intercultural

Intercultural communication occurs between the person sharing different cultural beliefs. Such a form of communication requires excellent skills as not only the knowledge of the spoken language is the key here, but also emotional intelligence plays a significant role.

Modern-day businesses focus a lot on this form of communication due to increasing globalization.

These non verbal cues are the primary forms of oral communication that we can notice in our day to day life. It is essential to understand why organizations should emphasize more on developing a pleasant oral communication atmosphere within the organization –

Importance of Good Oral Communication

When we talk about the importance of oral communication within any organization of any size, we are talking about the importance of exchanging ideas. No business can ever deny the role of formal communication and exchange of ideas within the organization. The person holding an idea might be very clear about it, but if the person is not able to transmit that idea to someone else in the organization, then it’s of no use.

Good oral communication means that the person involved in the information transmission can interpret the information in its original and valid form. Here, the stimulator and respondent, both should be good with their verbal communication skill to transmit and receive information positively.

The efficiency and productivity of the organization as a whole can be primarily impacted by effective oral communication within the organization. Better will be the efficiency of the organization if the ideas are transmitted well among the members of the organization. The focus should be laid to transmit the information correctly in the first attempt itself. An influential culture of understanding is developed if the oral communication of the organization is strong.

So, what should the organization do to improve the advantages of oral communication within the organization? Let us also understand what an individual can do to themselves to improve their oral communication skills –

How to Enhance Oral Communication?

Be confident

1. Practice

The practice is the key to excellent communication skills . You may not be good when you try to communicate the ideas for the first time, but if you keep grinding hard, sooner or later you will be able to convey the information effectively.

Organizations can conduct seminars with visual aids and training sessions for oral communication practice for the members of the organization.

2. Informal/formal group communication

You can improve your communication by communicating more with your friends and colleagues. Make sure that your friends provide you with valid feedback on your efforts.

Pick what you need to improve from those feedbacks and work on those areas. You can also enhance your listening and speaking skills through such communications.

3. Professional coaching

This can come handy when trying to improve oral communication. You can take expert guidance to improve your body language and communication skills. Moreover, such coaching conducts their practice sessions so it will be more helpful for you.

Organizations can also promote such an atmosphere for the members to take professional guidance over-improving communication skills.

4. Self-assessment

This is one of the most effective ways to improve oral communication skills. One can go for recording solo video sessions and then evaluate it to know the shortcomings.

This will improve not only confidence but also the way we communicate ( communication style) . Make sure that the recording sessions are not too large at the start.

5. Be confident

In the end, it’s not that complicated as you may think. Anyone can improve their oral communication skills; it’s just a matter of guidance and practice. Be confident in yourself.

Organizations should also incorporate a healthy atmosphere so that employees do not feel uncomfortable.

Examples of Oral Communication at Workplaces

Here are a few examples of oral and written communication and verbal communication in the workplace.

1. Oral Communication utilized by Supervisors

  • Advising subordinates about the suitable game-plan
  • Assertiveness
  • Conveying input in a useful and constructive way
  • Disciplining workforce in an immediate and respectful way
  • Giving credit to other people
  • Recognizing and countering complaints
  • Showing interests in other people, getting some information about and perceiving their sentiments
  • Speaking smoothly in any event, when you’re stressed
  • Terminating staff
  • Training others to do an assignment or job
  • Using affirmative sounds and words such as “uh-huh,” “I understand,” “got you,” “without a doubt,” “I see,” and “yes” to exhibit an understanding
  • Using self-exposure to support sharing

2. Oral Communication utilized by Team Members

  • Conveying messages compactly
  • Encouraging hesitant individuals to share input
  • Explaining a troublesome circumstance without being angry
  • Explaining that you need help
  • Paraphrasing to show your understanding
  • Posing inquiries to evoke more insight regarding explicit issues
  • Receiving feedback and criticism without defensiveness
  • Refraining from talking over and over again or intruding on others
  • Requesting input
  • Sharing your necessities, needs, or emotions without condemning or accusing

3. Oral Communication utilized by Clients

  • Anticipating the worries or concerns of others
  • Asking for explanation
  • Using open-ended inquiries to stimulate dialogue
  • Calming an upset client by perceiving and reacting to their grievances
  • Emphasizing advantages of an item, service, or proposal to convince an individual or a team
  • Noticing non-verbal prompts and reacting verbally to resolve confusion or anger related issues

4. Oral Communication utilized by Presenters

  • Enunciating each word you express accurately and clearly
  • Introducing the focus of the subject toward the start of your interaction
  • Planning communications before exchanging thoughts actually
  • Projecting your voice to occupy the room
  • Providing solid examples to outline points
  • Restating significant points towards the end of the presentation
  • Choosing language fitting to the crowd
  • Using a moderate pace while speaking, plus being confident with humility
  • Supporting your statements with facts and proof
  • Tailoring messages to various crowds
  • Telling stories to pull in the audience
  • Using humour to connect with the audiences

Final Thoughts!

These are the things organizations as well as individuals can work upon to improve their oral communication skills.

Having excellent oral communication skills is extremely important these days – from sharing ideas with colleagues to fitting in a job interview, you need it everywhere in today’s corporate world.

How important do you consider oral communication in your life?

Liked this post? Check out the complete series on Communication

Related posts:

  • Two-Way Communication – Definition, Importance and Examples
  • Intercultural Communication: Importance, Secrets & Examples
  • Interpersonal Communication: Meaning, Types, Importance, Elements and Examples
  • Visual Communication: Definition, Importance and Types
  • Communication Process: Definition, Steps, Importance & Example
  • Verbal Communication – Definition, Types, Importance and Difference from Non-Verbal
  • Public Communication – Definition, Importance and Types
  • Communication Strategy: Definition, Importance, Types and Success
  • Direct Communication – Definition, Importance and Advantages
  • Communication Design: Definition, Meaning, Types and Examples

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About Hitesh Bhasin

Hitesh Bhasin is the CEO of Marketing91 and has over a decade of experience in the marketing field. He is an accomplished author of thousands of insightful articles, including in-depth analyses of brands and companies. Holding an MBA in Marketing, Hitesh manages several offline ventures, where he applies all the concepts of Marketing that he writes about.

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1.4 The Importance of Communication

Communication skills are essential in all areas of life.

Communication is used in virtually all aspects of everyday life. In order to explore how communication is integrated into all parts of our lives, let us divide up our lives into four spheres: academic, professional, personal, and civic . The se spheres overlap a n d influence one another . After all, our personal experience is brought into the classroom, much of what goes on in a classroom is present in our professional and personal environments, and the classroom has long been seen as a place to foster personal growth and prepare students to become active and responsible members of society .

Academic Success

You will bring your current communication-related knowledge, skills, and abilities to the classroom. Aside from wanting to earn a good grade, you may also be genuinely interested in becoming a better communicator. Research shows that even people who are poor communicators can improve their verbal, nonverbal, and interpersonal communication skills by taking communication courses ( Zabava & Wolvin , 1993). Communication skills are also tied to academic success. Poor listening skills have been shown to contribute significantly to failure in a person’s first year of college. Also, students who take communication courses report having more confidence in their communication abilities, and these students have higher grade point averages and are less likely to drop out of school. Much of what we do in a classroom, whether it is the interpersonal interactions with our classmates and instructor, individual or group presentations, writing assignments, asking questions, or listening, can be used to build or add to a foundation of good communication skills and knowledge that can carry through t o professional, personal, and civic contexts .  

importance of oral communication in daily life

Professional Skills

The Corporate Rec r uiters Survey Report ( Graduate Management Admission Council, 2017 , p. 50 ) found that employers in h ealth c are and pharmacy, technology, nonprofit and government, and products and services industries list oral, written, listening, and presentation communication skills in their top five skills sought for midlevel positions. Adaptability was also ranked in the top five in three out of the four industries— the ability to be adaptable can be the result of a person’s ability to perceive, interpret, and share information. The survey also found that the need for teamwork skills is growing in deman d. The ability to follow a leader, delegation skills, valuing the op inions of others, cross-cultural sensitivity, and adaptability were listed as t eamwork ski lls , and these skills can also be the result of one’s communication skills.  

Table 1.1. Top Five Skills Employers Seek, in Order of Required Proficiency, by Industry

Note: Adapted from Corporate Recruiters Survey Report 2017 , by the Graduate Management Admission Council, p. 50. https://www.mba.com/-/media/files/gmac/research/employment-outlook/2017-gmac-corporate-recruiters-web-release.pdf?la=en

Desired communication skills vary from career to career, but again, the academic sphere provides a foundation onto which you can build communication skills specific to your professional role or field of study. Poor listening skills, lack of conciseness, and the inability to give constructive feedback have been identified as potential communication challenges in professional contexts. Despite the well-documented need for communication skills in the professional world, many students still resist engaging in communication classes. Perhaps people think they already have good communication skills or can improve their skills on their own. Although either of these may be true for some, studying communication can only help.  

Personal Communication Skills

Many students know from personal experience and from the prevalence of communication counselling on television talk shows and in self-help books that communication forms, maintains, and ends our interpersonal relationships, but they do not know the extent to which that occurs. Although we learn from experience, until we learn specific vocabulary and develop a foundational knowledge of communication concepts and theories, we do not have the necessary tools to make sense of these experiences. Just having a vocabulary to name the communication phenomena in our lives increases our ability to consciously alter our communication to achieve our goals, avoid miscommunication, and analyze and learn from our inevitable mistakes.

As mentioned earlier in the chapter, communication is required for us to meet our personal physical , instrumental , relational , and identity needs.

  • Physical needs are needs that keep our bodies and minds functioning.
  • Instrumental needs are needs that help us get things done in our day-to-day lives and achieve short- and long-term goals. 
  • Relational needs are needs that help us maintain social bonds and interpersonal relationships.
  • Identity needs include our need to present ourselves to others and be thought of in particular and desired ways.  

Civic Engagement

Civic engagement   refers to working to make a difference in our communities by improving the quality of life of community members; raising awareness about social, cultural, or political issues (Image 1.10); or participating in a wide variety of political and nonpolitical processes (Ehrlich, 2000).  The civic part of our lives is developed through engagement with the decision making that goes on in our society at small-group, local, state, regional, national, and international levels. Such involvement ranges from serving on a neighbourhood advisory board to sending an email to a political representative. Discussions and decisions that affect our communities happen around us all the time, but it takes time and effort to become part of that process. Communication scholars have been aware of the connections between communication and a person’s civic engagement or citizenship for thousands of years. Aristotle, who wrote the first and most influential comprehensive book on communication 2,400 years ago, taught that it is through our voice, our ability to communicate, that we engage with the world around us and participate in our society .  

importance of oral communication in daily life

Diversity in Communication

Communication is the sharing of understanding and meaning (Pearson & Nelson, 2000), but what is intercultural communication ? If you answered “the sharing of understanding and meaning across cultures,” you’d be close, but what is a culture ? Culture is defined by more than ethnicity, race, or geography. A culture can exist wherever there is a group of people with shared beliefs, attitudes, values, and traditions. Multiple factors can shape a culture, including but not limited to age, gender, ethnicity, race, geography, workplace settings, family, abilities, and interests. According to Rogers and Steinfatt (1999), intercultural communication is the exchange of information among individuals who are “unalike culturally.” Let’s explore what intercultural communication can look like.

A culture’s beliefs, attitudes, values, and traditions are represented and expressed by the behaviours of its members. The language we use, the holidays we celebrate, the clothes we wear, the movies we watch, or the video games we play are just some of the ways we express our culture. Environment also shapes a culture, and a culture can shape the environment. For example, a person can grow up in a mountainous region and value the environment. If the person moves to a beach town, they may display pictures of their favourite mountains and participate in an outdoor club to continue to express and engage in their culture. Culture also involves the psychological aspects of our expectations of the communication context. For example, if we are raised in a culture where males speak while females are expected to remain silent, the context of the communication interaction governs behaviour, itself a representation of culture. From the choice of words (message), to how we communicate (in person or by email), to how we acknowledge understanding with a nod or a glance (nonverbal feedback), to the internal and external interference, all aspects of communication are influenced by culture. 

Can there be intercultural communication within a culture? If all communication is intercultural, then the answer would be yes, but we still have to prove our case. Imagine a three-generation family living in one household. This family is a culture, but let’s look a bit closer. The grandparents may represent another time and different values from the grandchildren. The parents may have a different level of education and pursue different careers from the grandparents. The schooling the children receive may prepare them for yet other careers. From music to food preferences to how work is done may vary across time—singer Elvis Presley may seem like ancient history to the children. The communication across generations represents intercultural communication, even if only to a limited degree.

Another example is student culture. Let’s consider what other cultures likely impact the student culture at a school, university, or college. A group of students are likely all similar in age and educational level (Image 1.11). Do gender and the societal expectations of roles influence their interactions? Of course. And so we see that, among these students, the boys and girls not only communicate in distinct ways, but not all boys and girls are the same. A group of siblings may have common characteristics, but they will still have differences, and these differences contribute to intercultural communication. We are each shaped by our upbringing, and it influences our worldview, what we value, and how we interact with each other. We create culture, and it creates us. 

importance of oral communication in daily life

If intercultural communication is the exchange of information among individuals who are “unalike culturally,” after reflecting on our discussion and its implications, you may arrive at the idea that ultimately we are each “a culture of one”—we are simultaneously a part of community and its culture(s) and separate from it in the unique combination that represents us as an individual. All of us are separated by a matter of degrees from each other even if we were raised on the same street, have parents of similar educational background and profession, and have many other things in common.

Communication with yourself is called  intrapersonal communication , and it may also be intracultural, as you may only represent one culture, but most people belong to many groups, each with their own culture. Within our imaginary intergenerational home, how many cultures do you think we might find? If we only consider the parents, and consider work one culture and family another, we now have two. If we were to look more closely, we would find many more groups, and the complexity would grow exponentially. Does a conversation with yourself ever involve competing goals, objectives, needs, wants, or values? How did you learn of those goals or values? Through communication within and among individuals, they themselves are representative of many cultures. We struggle with the demands of each group and their expectations, and could consider this internal struggle intercultural conflict, or simply intercultural communication. 

Culture is part of the very fabric of our thought, and we cannot separate ourselves from it, even when we leave home, defining ourselves anew in work and achievement. Every business or organization has a culture, and within what may be considered a global culture, there are many subcultures or co-cultures. For example, consider the difference between the sales and accounting departments in a corporation—we can quickly see two distinct groups, each with their own symbols, vocabulary, and values. Within each group there may also be smaller groups, and each member of every department comes from a distinct background that in itself influences behaviour and interaction.

Intercultural communication is a part of our everyday lives and occurs interpersonally (with others) and intrapersonally (within ourselves). Intercultural communication competency is rooted in understanding the cultures around us and adapting our communication to establish, maintain, and grow positive intercultural relationships.  

Relating Theory to Real Life

Consider the definition of culture: 

  • What cultures do you feel you are a part of? What beliefs, attitudes, values, traditions, and behaviours represent your cultures?
  • What cultures do you see within your own family?
  • What cultural groups will you encounter in your future professional role?
  • What will you need to learn to be a competent intercultural communicator in the workplace?

Ethical Communication in the Workplace

As demonstrated by the communication models presented earlier in this chapter, when we communicate, there is an immediate impact on others. This means communication has broad ethical implications. Not only do we need to learn how to communicate, but we also need to become ethical communicators by learning how to communicate the “right” way. But what does that look like?

Communication ethics deals with the process of negotiating and reflecting on our actions and communication regarding what we believe to be right and wrong. For example, we may make the choice to communicate our opinions about education to others. We would undergo a process of negotiating the ethics of this decision, such as to whom is it okay to communicate our opinions? When is it appropriate to tell others about our personal opinions? What details about our opinions is it okay to share? What is the right method for sharing our opinion? In communication ethics, we are more concerned with the decisions people make about communicating what is right and wrong than the systems, philosophies, or religions that inform those decisions. Much of ethics is a grey area. Although we talk about making decisions in terms of what is right and what is wrong, the choice is rarely that simple. Aristotle said that we should act “to the right extent, at the right time, with the right motive, and in the right way.” This quote connects to communication competence, which focuses on communicating effectively and appropriately.

We all make choices daily that are more ethical or less ethical, and we may confidently make a decision only to learn later that it wasn’t the most ethical option. In any given situation, multiple options may seem appropriate, but we can only choose one. If, in a situation, we make a decision and reflect on it, and then realize we could have made a more ethical choice, does that make us a bad person? Although many behaviours can be easily labelled as ethical or unethical, communication isn’t always as clear. Physically assaulting someone is generally thought of as unethical and illegal, but many instances of hurtful speech, or even what some would consider hate speech, have been protected as free speech. This shows the complicated relationship between protected speech, ethical speech, and the law. In some cases, people see it as their ethical duty to communicate information that they feel is in the public’s best interest. The people behind WikiLeaks, for example, have released thousands of classified documents related to wars, intelligence gathering, and diplomatic communication. WikiLeaks claims that exposing this information forces politicians and leaders to be accountable and keeps the public informed, but government officials claim that the release of the information should be considered a criminal act. Both parties consider their own communication ethical and the other’s communication unethical, so who is right?

importance of oral communication in daily life

Since many of the choices we make when it comes to ethics are situational, contextual, and personal, various professional fields have developed codes of ethics to help guide members through areas that might otherwise be grey or uncertain. A profession’s code of ethics describes what ethical behaviours , including communication, are expected of any member of the profession . Table 1.2 below lists a few examples of professions and which communication behaviours are considered ethical and expected as described in that  profession’s code of ethics . Looking across different professions, we can see that ethical communication is expected in all service areas and that communication skills are key to meeting professional standards.

Table 1.2. Professional Organizations and Ethical Communication Expectation

  • What situations might arise in your future professional role that will require you to communicate ethically?
  • Why is it important for you , others, your workplace, and your community to be co nfident in communicating ethically ?

Dynamic Communication Skills Are Needed in Current Workplaces

Communication is key to your success in your current workplace.

Your current ability to communicate comes from past experience, which can be an effective teacher. Now is the time to examine your current skillset and compare it to current workplace needs and skills that have been proven necessary when working on teams. “Great teams are distinguished from good teams by how effectively they communicate. Great team communication is more than the words that are said or written. Power is leveraged by the team’s ability to actively listen, clarify, understand, and live by the principle that ‘everything communicates.’ The actions, the tone, the gestures, the infrastructure, the environment, and the things that are not done or said speak and inform just as loudly as words” (O’Rourke & Yarbrough, 2008).

Workplace environments have evolved. An article in the Harvard Business Review states that current workplace teams are more “diverse, dispersed, digital, and dynamic (with frequent changes in membership). But while teams face new hurdles, their success still hinges on a core set of fundamentals for group collaboration” (Haas & Mortensen, 2016). Haas and Mortensen further describe four conditions that need to be established for effective collaboration: compelling direction (when a team establishes explicit goals), strong structure (the team has the right mix of members, and the right processes and norms in place to guide behaviour), supportive context (the team has a reward system, an information system, and an educational system in place to enable progress), and a shared mindset (when a team develops a common identity and understanding). Communication is central to establishing all four conditions. Effective teams and groups in current workplace environments need effective communication. Now is the time to consider what communication skills you have and which ones you need to grow to effectively contribute to your future team. 

Communication Merges You and Them

When we join a workplace team, communication is a non-negotiable skill in a complex environment. Being able to communicate allows us to share a part of ourselves, connect with others, and meet our needs on a team. Being unable to communicate might mean losing, hiding, or minimizing a part of yourself. Sharing with others feels vulnerable. For some, this may be a positive challenge, whereas for others it may be discouraging, but in all cases, your ability to communicate is central to your expression of self.

importance of oral communication in daily life

On the other side of the coin, your communication skills help you understand others on a team—not just their words, but also their tone of voice, their nonverbal gestures, and the format of their written documents provide you with clues about who they are and what their values and priorities may be. Expressing yourself and understanding others are key functions of an effective team member and part of the process of becoming an effective team (Image 1.13).  

Communication Influences How You Learn

You need to begin the process of improving your communication skills with the frame of mind that it will require effort, persistence, and self-correction. You learn to speak in public by first having conversations, then by answering questions and expressing your opinions in class, and finally by preparing and delivering a “stand-up” speech. Similarly, you learn to write by first learning to read, then by writing and learning to think critically. Your speaking and writing are reflections of your thoughts, experience, and education, and part of that combination is your level of experience listening to other speakers, reading documents and various styles of writing, and studying formats similar to what you aim to produce. Speaking and writing are both key communication skills that you will use in teams and groups.

As you study group communication, you may receive suggestions for improvement and clarification from professionals more experienced than yourself. Take their suggestions as challenges to improve—don’t give up when your first speech or first draft does not communicate the message you intended. Stick with it until you get it right. Your success in communicating is a skill that applies to almost every field of work, and it makes a difference in your relationships with others. Remember that luck is simply a combination of preparation and timing. You want to be prepared to communicate well when given the opportunity. Each time you do a good job, your success will bring more success.

Communication Represents You and Your Employer

You want to make a good first impression on your friends and family, on your instructors, and on your employer. They all want you to convey a positive image because it reflects on them. In your career, you will represent your business or company in teams and groups, and your professionalism and attention to detail will reflect positively on you and set you up for success.

As an effective member of the team, you will benefit from having the ability to communicate clearly and with clarity. You will use these skills for the rest of your life. Positive improvements in these skills will have a positive impact on your relationships, your prospects for employment, and your ability to make a difference in the world.

Communication Skills Are Desired by Business and Industry

Oral and written communication proficiencies are consistently ranked in the top 10 desirable skills by employer surveys year after year. In fact, high-powered business executives sometimes hire consultants to coach them in sharpening their communication skills. According to the National Association of Colleges Job Outlook 2023 survey (Gray, 2022), the top five attributes that employers seek on a candidate’s resumé are the following:

  • Problem-solving skills
  • Ability to work on a team
  • Strong work ethic
  • Analytical and quantitative skills
  • Written communication skills
  • Technical skills

Knowing this, you can see that one way for you to be successful and increase your promotion potential is to improve your ability to speak and write effectively.

Teams and groups are almost universal across all fields because no one person has all the skills, knowledge, or ability to do everything with an equal degree of excellence. Employees work with each other in manufacturing and service industries on a daily basis. An individual with excellent communication skills is an asset to every organization. No matter what career you plan to pursue, learning to interact, contribute, and excel in groups and teams will help you get there.

Digital and Electronic Communication Are Here to Stay

Computers and the internet entered the world in the 1940s and have been on the rise ever since. According to Jotform (2021), a global pandemic necessitated the use of digital and electronic communication because people were required to work from home as much as possible. Digital and electronic communication tools such as video-conferencing platforms, cloud storage, messaging platforms, and digital forms are now widely used and easily accessible. It’s not clear yet what digital and electronic communication methods will remain in use; however, because of their prevalence, we need to consider our communication skills in these digital and electronic environments.

Netiquette refers to etiquette, or protocols and norms for communication, when communicating using digital and electronic methods. Whatever digital device you use, written communication in the form of brief messages, or texting, has become a practical way to connect when talking on the phone or when meeting in person would be cumbersome. Texting is not useful for long or complicated messages, and careful consideration should be given to the audience. Email is frequently used to communicate among co-workers and has largely replaced print hard-copy letters for external (outside the company) correspondence, as well as taking the place of memos for internal (within the company) communication (Guffey, 2008). Email can be very useful for messages that have slightly more content than a text message, but it is still best used for fairly brief messages. Emails may be informal in personal contexts, but business communication requires attention to detail, an awareness that your email reflects you and your company, and a professional tone so that the email may be forwarded to a third party, if needed. Remember that when these tools are used for business, they need to convey professionalism and respect.

  • Knowing what communication skills employers and current workplace environments require, what skills are you strong in right now? What skills do you need to develop?
  • How do you see face-to-face and digital and electronic communication skills being similar and/or different? Where do you see face-to-face and digital and electronic communication in your future professional role?

Attribution

Unless otherwise indicated, material on this page has been reproduced or adapted from the following resource:

University of Minnesota. (2016).  Communication in the real world: An introduction to communication studies . University of Minnesota Libraries Publishing. https://open.lib.umn.edu/communication , licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 4.0 , except where otherwise noted.

Alberta Health Services (AHS). (2023). Ethics & compliance . https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/about/Page645.aspx

Alberta Health Services (AHS). (2016). Code of conduct . https://www.albertahealthservices.ca/assets/about/policies/ahs-pub-code-of-conduct.pdf

Alberta Therapeutic Recreation Association (ATRA). (2021). Code of ethics: A guide for ethical and moral decision-making for recreational therapists . https://www.alberta-tr.ca/media/91513/codeofethics11may2021.pdf

Bourque, T., & Horney, B. (2016). Principles of veterinary medical ethics of the CVMA . Canadian Veterinary Medical Association. https://www.canadianveterinarians.net/about-cvma/principles-of-veterinary-medical-ethics-of-the-cvma/

Canadian Veterinary Medical Association (CVMA). (2016). Principles of veterinary medical ethics of the CVMA . https://www.canadianveterinarians.net/media/o5qjghc0/principles-of-veterinary-medical-ethics-of-the-cvma.pdf

Child and Youth Care Association of Alberta (CYCAA). (2008). Code of ethics . https://www.cycaa.com/about-us/code-of-ethics

College of Alberta Dental Assistants (CADA). (2019). Code of ethics . http://abrda.ca/protecting-the-public/regulations-and-standards/code-of-ethics/

Cyr, C., Helgason, E., Appleton, K., & Yunick, A. (2021). Code of ethics: A guide for ethical and moral decision-making for recreation therapists . Alberta Therapeutic Recreation Association. https://www.alberta-tr.ca/media/91513/codeofethics11may2021.pdf

Ehrlich, T. (Ed.). (2000). Civic responsibility and higher education . Oryx Press.

Government of Alberta. (2023). Code of conduct and ethics for the Alberta Public Service . https://www.alberta.ca/code-of-conduct-and-ethics-for-the-alberta-public-service.aspx

Graduate Management Admission Council. (2017). Corporate recruiters survey report 2017 .  https://www.mba.com/-/media/files/gmac/research/employment-outlook/2017-gmac-corporate-recruiters-web-release.pdf?la=en

Gray, K. (2022, November 15). As their focus on GPA fades, employers seek key skills on college grads’ resumes . National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE). https://www.naceweb.org/talent-acquisition/candidate-selection/as-their-focus-on-gpa-fades-employers-seek-key-skills-on-college-grads-resumes/

Guffey, M. (2008).  Essentials of business communication (7th ed.). Thomson/Wadsworth.

Haas, M., & Mortensen, M. (2016, June). The secrets of great teamwork . Harvard Business Review. https://hbr.org/2016/06/the-secrets-of-great-teamwork

Jotform. (2021, December 8). How technology has changed workplace communication . https://www.jotform.com/blog/technology-and-workplace-communication/

O’Rourke, J., & Yarbrough, B. (2008). Leading groups and teams . South-Western Cengage Learning.

Pearson, J., & Nelson, P. (2000). An introduction to human communication: Understanding and sharing . McGraw-Hill.

Rogers, E., & Steinfatt, T. (1999). I ntercultural communication . Waveland Press.

Therapy Assistant Association of Alberta (ThAAA). (2012). Code of ethics . http://thaaa.ca/wp-content/uploads/2019/08/ThAAA_Code-of-Ethics.pdf

Zabava Ford, W. S., & Wolvin, A. D. (1993). The differential impact of a basic communication course on perceived communication competencies in class, work, and social contexts. Communication Education, 42 (3), 215–223. https://doi.org/10.1080/0363452930937892

Image Credits (images are listed in order of appearance)

Figure 6. Graduation by Hippo px  by U3167879, CC BY-SA 4.0

Protest-sofia-incinerator  by 008all, CC BY-SA 4.0

Group of students in front of the DARM  by Violetova , CC BY-SA 4.0

Meaning of ETHICS101  by Pokemon1244, CC BY-SA 4.0

Teamwork Skills Training Workplace Illustration  by Digits.co.uk Images , CC BY 2.0

Introduction to Communications Copyright © 2023 by NorQuest College is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License , except where otherwise noted.

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Oral communication skills are important for students.

BY ANTON LUCANUS

Communication skills are vital for a student’s academic success and future career prospects. In today’s challenging environment, students must not only possess academic expertise, but also the requisite skills to enhance their learning and employability prospects in the future.

Communication is a dynamic process as it involves an interaction between two or more people i.e. the sender and the receiver. The main purpose of communication is to transmit thoughts and beliefs to another person. The major components of communication are verbal communication or oral communication and non-verbal communication. Oral communication is the process of expressing ideas through the medium of speech and this plays a crucial role in the life of students.

Importance of Oral Communication for Students

An individual learns the basics of oral communication right at home. The school environment takes this learning a notch higher by teaching the student how to interact with peers and teachers alike. The quality of communication in student life will define professional communication later in life.

Good communication enables students to assimilate more from the learning process by empowering them to ask relevant questions and discuss doubts.

Effective verbal communication nurtures the process of socialization by facilitating new friendships and these in turn aid the learning process.

Productive communication is a boost to career development. An ability to convey thoughts in a clear and precise manner would help a student to make a favorable impression at an interview and get the job that he deserves.

Communication skills inculcate professionalism in speaking styles, ways of self-expression and attitudes towards others, and these traits would hold students in good stead in their professional lives.

Dynamics of Oral Communication

The hallmark of a good student communicator is that he has mastered the art of preparing, organizing and delivering successful oral presentations. Oral communication includes real-time presentations, video presentations and interviews, with accompanying visual aids such as handouts and power-points.

Message is the key to a good oral communication. The substance of the presentation should be relevant to the audience and goals of the presentation.

Self-awareness is the starting point of good oral communication. A person who is aware of his strengths and weaknesses can put in the required efforts to improve communication skills.

Confidence is another vital aspect of good communication. A person may know the subject and yet not communicate adequately if he lacks confidence.

Simplicity in messaging is indispensable for good communication as assimilation of the message is directly proportional to clarity of its presentation.

Awareness of the audience is an important tool in the hands of an effective oral communicator. A good communicator can guage the impact of the by observing the body language and feedback of the audience and adjust his approach accordingly.

Interaction is the path to effectiveness. A student oral communicator can keep the audience engaged by asking questions and soliciting opinions on the subject matter at hand. This would also help in fine tuning the message and style of presentation, based on the feedback received from the audience.

The tone of voice of the presenter carries a lot of weight in delivery of the message. A confident tone keeps the audience engaged, whereas a low and monotonous tone can be off-putting. Voice modulation can also be employed to highlight the key points in the presentation and retain the attention of the audience.

Body language is an important component of effective oral communication. The student should adopt a stable and confident posture, make appropriate gestures, avoid being fidgety and establish eye contact during the presentation.

Oral communication is not merely the ability to speak, but also the capacity to listen. A good communicator is one who is attuned to the audience and is able to calibrate his message accordingly. An aspiring oral communicator should be willing to acquire and hone his listening skills over a period of time.

  The Path to Effective Oral Communication

Oral communication is an art that can be learnt and polished through reading, presentation skills and practice.

An oral communicator should have intellectual curiosity. Reading is a means to the development of good communication skills. A well-educated mind would be able to communicate better as content is the soul of the communication process. He should also possess an attitude of discussion and deliberation as this would improve intellectual capabilities and thereby contribute to effective communication.

Effective writing skills and good verbal communication skills go hand-in-hand although they may appear antithetical to a newbie. A student with good writing skills would alone be in a position to organize and present his thoughts in a structured manner; an exposure to the nitty-gritty of essay writing would be immensely beneficial in that regard.

The age-old dictum ‘Practice makes a person perfect’ makes perfect sense in the world of oral communication. The first impression is the best impression and many students fail this test due to a various impediments such as stage fright, lack of self-confidence and performance anxiety. A student can conquer his fears and master the art of oral communication by participating in many real and mock presentations, and speech-based activities.

Active participation in the community would transform a student into a good communicator by honing his linguistic abilities. Moreover, a leadership position in an academic setting would be an important asset on the CV of a student.

To conclude, a student willing to put his nose to the grindstone can indeed make a smooth transition from a tentative speaker to an effective and seasoned oral communicator.

Byline –  Anton Lucanus is the Director of Neliti. During his college years, he maintained a perfect GPA, was published in a top cancer journal, and received many of his country’s most prestigious undergraduate scholarships. Anton writes for The College Puzzle as a means to share the lessons learnt throughout his degree and to guide current students to achieve personal and educational fulfilment during college life.

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What is the importance of oral communication in our daily lives?

Table of Contents

  • 1 What is the importance of oral communication in our daily lives?
  • 2 What is the importance of oral communication essay?
  • 3 Why communication is important in our life?
  • 4 What do we learn from oral communication?
  • 5 Why is oral communication important in the business world?
  • 6 What makes you a good oral communicator?

Oral communication is ubiquitous in our everyday lives: we communicate with classmates and colleagues on Zoom calls, we demonstrate our content knowledge and expertise in oral presentations, and we communicate our career goals to potential employers in job interviews.

What is the importance of oral communication essay?

Oral communication allows an individual to express emotions, ideas, and feelings; it gives people the ability to empower, inspire, and motivate those who listen; and it allows people to share knowledge and traditions, as well as build their self-esteem.

Why is oral communication important for students?

Students feel empowered when they can “talk the talk” in their social lives. Effective use of oral communication also allows students to advocate for themselves. They must be able to articulate when and how their academic needs are not being met.

What are the benefits of oral communication?

Advantages of Oral Communication

  • Immediate Feedback.
  • Time Saving.
  • Economical.
  • Personal Touch.
  • Flexibility.
  • Group Communication.
  • Effectiveness.

Why communication is important in our life?

In your personal life, good communication skills can improve your personal relationships by helping you to understand others, and to be understood. Communication is also vital in wider family relationships, whether you want to discuss arrangements for holidays, or ensure that your teenage children are well and happy.

What do we learn from oral communication?

You’ll learn how to establish credibility in your speech using examples, statistics, quotations, images and explanations to support your argument. You’ll learn how to articulate your main point clearly and memorably and why that matters.

What are examples of oral communication?

Examples of oral communication within an organisation include:

  • staff meetings, business meetings and other face-to-face meetings.
  • personal discussions.
  • presentations.
  • telephone calls.
  • informal conversation.
  • public presentations such as speeches, lectures and conferences.
  • teleconferences or videoconferences.
  • interviews.

What is communication and its importance?

Communication. Communications is fundamental to the existence and survival of humans as well as to an organization. It is a process of creating and sharing ideas, information, views, facts, feelings, etc. among the people to reach a common understanding. Communication is the key to the Directing function of management.

Why is oral communication important in the business world?

What makes you a good oral communicator.

Which is the most important stage of oral communication?

Why is body language important in oral communication?

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importance of oral communication in daily life

What is the importance of oral communication in our daily life?

Table of Contents

  • 1 What is the importance of oral communication in our daily life?
  • 2 Why is oral communication important in the workplace?
  • 3 What do you learn from oral communication?
  • 4 How important is oral communication in everyday business relationship?
  • 5 What is good oral communication?
  • 6 How effective is oral communication?
  • 7 What are the advantages of oral presentation?

Oral communication is ubiquitous in our everyday lives: we communicate with classmates and colleagues on Zoom calls, we demonstrate our content knowledge and expertise in oral presentations, and we communicate our career goals to potential employers in job interviews.

Why is oral communication important for students?

Students feel empowered when they can “talk the talk” in their social lives. Effective use of oral communication also allows students to advocate for themselves. They must be able to articulate when and how their academic needs are not being met.

Why is oral communication important in the workplace?

Quality communication in the workplace can eliminate unnecessary problems and promote better performance. The ability to communicate effectively in the workplace can increase overall productivity, and create a strong team. When teams fail to communicate effectively, the results are detrimental to the company.

How can oral communication help you in the future?

The quality of communication in student life will define professional communication later in life. Effective verbal communication nurtures the process of socialization by facilitating new friendships and these in turn aid the learning process. Productive communication is a boost to career development.

What do you learn from oral communication?

You’ll learn how to establish credibility in your speech using examples, statistics, quotations, images and explanations to support your argument. You’ll learn how to articulate your main point clearly and memorably and why that matters.

How can you make oral communication more effective?

You can use the following 10 steps to help improve your verbal communication at work:

  • Think before speaking.
  • Use concise language.
  • Understand your audience.
  • Be mindful of your tone.
  • Pay attention to your body language.
  • Employ active listening.
  • Speak with confidence.
  • Show your authentic self.

How important is oral communication in everyday business relationship?

Oral communication is an essential for teamwork and group energy. Oral communication promotes a receptive and encouraging morale among organizational employees. Oral communication can be best used to transfer private and confidential information/matter.

What do you learn in oral communication?

What is good oral communication?

For oral communication to be effective, it should be clear, relevant, tactful in phraseology and tone, concise, and informative. Presentations or conversations that bear these hallmarks can be an invaluable tool in ensuring business health and growth.

Why do we need to learn oral communication?

The Art of Storytelling. Storytelling also develops higher level thinking skills and establishes social skills.

  • Reflection Of A Community Project. Pioneer Health Resources was very valuable in term of teaching me how to work with different type of people and different ages.
  • CORPORATE TRAINING

How effective is oral communication?

In today’s business world one of the most important skills that need to be mastered is that of effective oral communication. Effective oral communication is about the speaker’s selection of content, their presentation skills and their overall connection with the audience. For oral communication to be successful it has to have great content.

Why oral and written instructions are important?

Clarify misunderstandings

  • Avoid miscommunication
  • Improve productivity
  • Reduce mistakes and errors
  • Resolve tension and conflict
  • Build relationships and trust

What are the advantages of oral presentation?

Effective oral presentation helps in saving efforts, time and money for listeners as well as the speaker. It can be used for conveying confidential information to a selected group of individuals which ultimately improves the level of communication & exchange of information.

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  • Open access
  • Published: 21 February 2024

Communication strategies for adults in palliative care: the speech-language therapists’ perspective

  • Cátia Dias 1 ,
  • Inês Tello Rodrigues 2 , 3 ,
  • Hernâni Gonçalves 1 , 4 &
  • Ivone Duarte 1 , 4  

BMC Palliative Care volume  23 , Article number:  49 ( 2024 ) Cite this article

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Communication disorders are a challenge that many patients in palliative care (PC) may encounter. This intervention area is emerging for the speech-language therapist (SLT), the professional who works in preventing, assessing, diagnosing, and treating human communication disorders. This study aims to identify and classify the communication strategies considered most important by SLTs for use in PC and evaluate whether there are any differences in perception regarding the importance of strategies between SLTs with and without PC experience.

This cross-sectional quantitative study was conducted using a survey, which employed a well-structured, self-completion questionnaire previously validated by a panel of experts with over six years of PC experience.

The strategies rated as most important within each group were the following: (i) adjust the patient’s position and minimise environmental noise; (ii) establish eye contact and adjust the pace of speech; (iii) adjust the language level and raise one topic at a time; (iv) use images of the patient’s interests and their personal objects; (v) use orality and multimodal form; (vi) use simplified language and structured pauses; and (vii) use tables with images and books with pictures.

Conclusions

Verbal and non-verbal strategies were rated as highly important. There was no evidence of differences in perception in terms of importance between the SLTs with or without experience in PC, but more studies are needed to support this aspect. The patient’s communication ability is one of the cornerstones of PC quality. Through their actions, speech-language professionals could empower the patient with strategies so that they can autonomously and self-determinedly express their experiences and most significant needs.

Peer Review reports

Palliative care (PC) is person-centred care aimed at relieving pain and symptoms resulting from the advanced stage of a disease that cannot be cured [ 1 ]. This approach focuses on promoting the quality of life of families and patients, helping them to face all the challenges associated with a terminal illness [ 1 ]. In addition, advocating symptom control, PC also includes support for the person’s psychological, spiritual, and social suffering [ 1 ]. In this sense, a communication disorder could be a significant barrier to implementing the advocated underlying objectives [ 2 ].

In the advanced stages of an illness, communication is often very compromised [ 3 ]. According to the literature, in PC, many patients are expected to have disturbances in both communication and swallowing due to the characteristics and progression of their health conditions [ 2 , 4 ]. Pollens [ 2 ] refers to O’Reilly and Walshe’s research of 2015 [ 5 ] (involving 322 speech therapists working in PC in the Republic of Ireland, the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand), centred on speech-language therapists (SLTs) in PC at an international level [ 2 , 5 ]. Cases of advanced dementia, neurodegenerative diseases, and tumours are the group of pathologies that SLTs most frequently accompany, significantly impacting communicative competence [ 2 ].

Following this line of thought, a study was conducted in Portugal with 38 adult PC patients and 26 family members/informal caregivers [ 6 ]. The study concluded that 55.3% of patients reported having difficulty communicating. The option “communicate with difficulty” was selected by 34.2% of the patients. In turn, 57.7% of families and/or informal caregivers refer to this difficulty as primordial, and the highest percentage for this group (30.8%) was also related to the option “communicate with difficulty” [ 6 ].

The patient’s communication ability is one of the pillars of end-of-life quality care [ 2 ]. In the face of a communication disorder, patients may be limited in their ability to communicate their needs, concerns, and decisions verbally, and their inclusion in decision-making is also often overlooked and their views misinterpreted [ 2 ]. According to the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (2016), the SLT should prevent, assess, diagnose, and treat human communication disorders. Pollens [ 2 ] particularises the work of the SLT in PC: (i) promote competencies in the patients so that they can communicate their needs (e.g., healthcare, emotional, and spiritual needs) autonomously; (ii) promote decision-making and fulfilment of end-of-life objectives; (iii) create competencies in the team so that they can discuss issues related to death with the patient; and (iv) encourage social and emotional closeness between patients and their families [ 2 ].

Other studies emphasise that communication barriers limit the patients’ participation in their care plan [ 2 , 7 , 8 , 9 ]. As a result of this concern, strategies have been developed to enhance the communicative functionality of the person in a clinical care setting [ 7 ]. For example, Stead and McDonnell [ 10 ] created communicative resources aimed at people with aphasia to support the realisation of their advance directives [ 2 , 10 ].

Another study on people with dementia showed that using tables with images (including their respective captions) allowed users to communicate their preferences to the nursing team regarding the healthcare they wanted to receive [ 11 ]. Furthermore, communication strategies (also known as compensatory strategies) allow the person to interact with communication partners, bypassing the barriers imposed by the disorder’s characteristics [ 9 ]. In the face of these difficulties, verbal, non-verbal, and visual strategies, assistive technologies, environmental strategies (physical space), formal strategies, and various forms of communication can be used [ 11 , 12 , 13 ].

These strategies are a new expanded communicative behaviour, often acquired spontaneously and used systematically to overcome communication barriers [ 9 ]. The implementation of communication strategies is one of the competencies of SLTs, materialising in a specific way by using materials, symbols, and/or techniques, significantly promoting the patients’ participation in the final phase of their lives [ 2 , 9 , 14 ]. However, the research related to the existence of standardised protocols and procedures is scarce, and more knowledge is needed.

It is important to point out that the literature recognises the need for communication skills to support the quality of life of patients with advanced illnesses and their families [ 2 , 15 ]. Moreover, it is fundamental for patients to be able to choose freely and autonomously, communicate decisions and needs, and express what they do and do not want and what they don’t want for themselves while receiving PC [ 2 , 15 ].

Currently, no comprehensive summary exists for the communication strategies mentioned in the literature to support PC patients. The roles of SLTs in communication with PC patients are very relevant, but further research is needed. Given these gaps, this study sought to: (a) understand the SLTs perception of the most important communication strategies to implement with adults in a PC context; and (b) understand if there are differences in perception, and the attribution of importance to the strategies, between professionals who have PC experience and those who do not.

This cross-sectional quantitative study involved 97 SLTs: 40 with PC experience and 57 without experience in this area. Data was collected using a self-completion questionnaire structured with closed-ended questions available online (in Portuguese). The data collection instrument was developed for research purposes, as there were no questionnaires on this subject, and then validated by a panel of experts—the Delphi panel (supplemental file 1). The criteria for inclusion in this panel included the following aspects: (i) four clinicians with more than six years of professional experience; (ii) experience with adults in a PC situation; and (iii) experience in the field of communication in PC. The Delphi technique was implemented in two phases to validate the content of the data collection instrument.

The final questionnaire was organised as follows: section i) socio-demographic information (gender; age; years of service; place of work; age groups the clinician works with; experience with the adult PC population; and section ii) communication strategies included in seven categories: (1) environmental strategies, (2) non-verbal strategies, (3) verbal strategies, (4) visual strategies, (5) communication forms, (6) formal strategies, and (7) assistive technologies. A Lickert-type response scale was used with the following designations: 1 - “ not important ”, 2 - “ not very important ”, 3 - “ important ”, 4 - “ very important ”.

Participants were recruited using the snowball sampling technique. The inclusion criteria for taking part in the study was Portuguese speech therapists working in Portugal. The study complied with the ethical principles set out in the Declaration of Helsinki (2013), and the research was approved by the Ethics Committee of the University Hospital Centre of São João (reference no. 60 − 19). Those responsible for the study agreed to the consent form, and all participants gave their free and informed consent in the online questionnaire form.

The data was exported from Google® Forms to Microsoft Excel® 2016, and all statistical analyses were carried out in SPSS® Statistics (version 25, IBM Corp., Armonk, NY, USA) and RStudio (version 2023.9.1.494). In the descriptive analysis of the results, categorical variables were described using absolute and relative frequencies, while the continuous variable was described using the median, minimum and maximum. The Friedman test was used to compare the strategies within each category, and the mean rank was used to identify the two strategies that were given the greatest importance within each category for the purposes of analysis. The chi-square or Fisher’s test was used when appropriate to compare the groups of SLTs. The significance level was set at 0.05.

Participants in the study ranged in age from 22 to 57, mostly female (90%), and most of them had up to five years of professional experience and worked in long-term care, home care, and clinics. Regarding the population with which they work (there may be more than one at the same time), 86% of therapists work with paediatric, 67% with adult, and 61% with youth populations (Table  1 ). As shown in Table  1 , SLTs with PC experience work more in long-term care ( p  < 0.001) and nursing homes ( p  = 0.005) and less in schools ( p  = 0.001), as well as working more with adults ( p  < 0.001) and less with children ( p  < 0.001).

There were statistically significant differences between the strategies within each of the seven categories, each with p  < 0.001. Within the environmental strategies group, 90% of therapists find adjusting the patient’s position (mean rank = 3.54) “very important”, while the remaining therapists consider it “important”. Minimising environmental noise (mean rank = 3.22) is considered by 77% of therapists to be “very important”, while the remaining consider it “important” (Fig.  1 ; Table  2 ).

In terms of non-verbal strategies, eye contact is “very important” for 95% of the participants and “important” for the remaining participants. The pace of speech (mean rank = 8.89) is considered “very important” for 87% of participants and “important” for the remaining participants (Fig.  2 ; Table  2 ).

Regarding verbal strategies, linguistic adjustment is most prominent (mean rank = 11.61), as 94% of therapists responded that it was “very important”. In contrast, the remaining therapists answered that it was “important” or “not very important”. Addressing one topic at a time (mean rank = 11.32) is considered by 91% of respondents to be “very important”, while the remaining respondents consider it to be “important” or “not very important” (Fig.  3 ; Table  2 ).

Concerning visual strategies, 83% of therapists consider it “very important” to use images that interest the patient (mean rank = 3.37), while the remaining therapists consider it “important” or “not very important”. The use of personal objects (mean rank = 3.06) is considered “very important” by 70% of the therapists, while the remaining consider it “important” or “not very important” (Fig.  4 ; Table  2 ).

For 85% of the participants, multimodal communication (mean rank = 3.46) is “very important” and for the remaining participants it is “important” or “not very important”. Additionally, the oral (mean rank = 3.43) form is “very important” for 83% of the participants and “important” for the remaining participants (Fig.  5 ; Table  2 ).

In terms of formal strategies, simplified language (mean rank = 5.62) stands out as “very important” for 87% of respondents and “important” for the remaining respondents. On the other hand, structured pauses (mean rank = 5.34) are emphasised by 79% of respondents as “very important” and “important” for the remaining respondents (Fig.  6 ; Table  2 ).

Regarding assistive technologies, the strategy of using tables with images (mean rank = 8.39) is most notable, highlighted by 63% of therapists as being “very important” and “important” to the remaining therapists. Picture books (mean rank = 7.62) are considered “very important” by 53% of therapists, while the remaining therapists consider them “important” or “not very important” (Fig.  7 ; Table  2 ). Furthermore, although not statistically significant, there was a tendency in the group of therapists with experience in PC to place greater importance on the form of oral communication ( p  = 0.114, Table  2 ).

figure 1

Environmental communication strategies

figure 2

Non-verbal communication strategies

figure 3

Verbal communication strategies

figure 4

Visual communication strategies

figure 5

Forms of communication

figure 6

Formal communication strategies

figure 7

Assistive technologies for communication

To our knowledge, this is the first cross-sectional study to explore the perspectives of SLTs on the most important communication strategies to implement in the context of PC. First, it allowed us to categorise and classify some strategies that these professionals in PC can use. Second, it enabled us to compare the two groups of SLTs and observe that there were no differences in perception in assigning importance to the identified strategies.

Adjusting the patient’s position was the most important in the environmental category. It has been reported that the patient’s position influences the effectiveness of a communication process in the context in which they find themselves [ 16 ]. On the one hand, adjusting the patient’s position makes it possible to create empathy with the interlocutors and, on the other, to use some strategies that will allow communication to be carried out in a functional way [ 16 ]. Users of augmentative and alternative communication (AAC) systems must be positioned appropriately to operate or manipulate a system [ 8 , 16 ]. Additionally, the system must be adjusted to the person’s position, whether lying in bed, sitting in an armchair, or standing up [ 8 , 16 ]. Indeed, an appropriate adjustment to the position provides patients: (i) support, comfort, and availability to use their body according to their mobility; (ii) free movement of the arms and legs, without losing balance (i.e., within their motor skills); (iii) the ability to move freely; and (iv) allows them to maintain the position while using AAC without getting tyred [ 16 ]. This strategy could be a fundamental resource for SLTs who use AAC with their patients, helping them to optimise their intervention [ 17 ].

Importantly, minimising environmental noise is also critical. Noise is considered an environmental stress factor, and its negative effect on physiological and psychological levels is well known [ 18 ]. Specifically, the body reacts to noise in the same way that it reacts to stressful situations [ 18 ]. Excessive noise in healthcare settings impairs communication, reducing speech intelligibility and consequently causing the patient tiredness, discomfort, and irritation [ 18 ]. For all these reasons, environmental noise is considered a communicative barrier in healthcare since it inhibits the patient’s interaction and communication with healthcare professionals [ 19 ]. Additionally, if a person has impaired language comprehension, such as aphasia, auditory and visual distractions may impede their ability to comprehend verbal language [ 20 ].

In recent years, studies have demonstrated the significant relevance of environmental strategies in decision-making situations for patients with dementia and aphasia [ 21 , 22 , 23 ]. Controlling environmental stimuli, choosing a welcoming setting, reducing environmental noise, and creating quiet environments are some strategies that facilitate communication between the patient and the care provider, as mentioned by various researchers [ 21 , 22 , 23 ].

Concerning non-verbal strategies, establishing eye contact was the most important. Eye contact is essential for proximity between the health professional and the patient, who will feel valued and supported [ 24 ]. Keutchafo’s [ 24 ] studied non-verbal communication between nursing teams and the elderly and revealed that eye contact is often used to gain the patient’s trust and promote a more meaningful interpersonal relationship. A recent study described some communicative strategies that would be useful for patients with communication disorders, solidifying a list of 16 communication strategies [ 25 ]. Specifically, the patients reported that communication was facilitated when the professional looked at the patient and emphasised the importance of eye contact during a conversation [ 25 ].

Adjusting the pace of speech was another highly relevant strategy for therapists. The importance attributed to this strategy is not recent. Some studies, such as those by Tuohy [ 26 ] and Park and Song [ 27 ], emphasise that the use of an adjusted pace throughout the speech conveys reassurance and supports the understanding of information [ 26 , 27 ]. We continue to observe that this strategy remains a highly valued resource. Specifically, in the study mentioned above, participants also reported that speaking clearly while adjusting the pace could facilitate communication [ 25 ]. Another study explored what facilitates confidence in communication from the perspective of adults with aphasia and concluded that communicating with partners with an adjusted speech pace helps individuals with aphasia better understand the message [ 20 ].

Concerning verbal strategies, the therapists emphasised adjusting to the patient’s language level as “very important”. Clinical language contains specific terminology and abbreviations that the patient is often unaware of [ 19 , 28 ]. If this is overlooked during an interaction, it could threaten the closeness between the patient and the healthcare professional, as neither will be at the same level of knowledge [ 19 , 28 ]. Thus, using vocabulary that the patient knows establishes a closer relationship, enabling greater treatment compliance, and a better understanding of the care they will receive [ 19 , 28 ]. Despite limited research on communication strategies with adults in PC, some studies on decision-making in patients with communication disorders recommend that healthcare professionals use clear language devoid of jargon and passive and complex sentences [ 29 ]. Furthermore, individuals with communication disorders who participated in Hickey and colleagues’ research [ 25 ] identified that, during a communication situation, interlocutors should use respectful words adjusted to each person’s age [ 25 ].

The use of one topic at a time also stood out in the therapists’ perception. Research into communication strategies in the context of advanced dementia has shown that there is a better understanding of information when this strategy is implemented [ 30 ]. This result was corroborated by Hickey and colleagues’ study [ 25 ], where participants identified giving warnings about changes in conversation topics as an important communication strategy.

Concerning visual strategies, both groups of therapists highlighted employing images and objects of interest to the patient. This group of strategies can include personal photographs, images, personal objects, phrases, and words [ 31 ]. In situations of dementia, the use of images and materials of interest to the person are considered facilitating elements for establishing communication [ 31 ]. Interventions prioritising this strategy facilitate understanding, promote narratives, stimulate attention, and help patients focus on their health process [ 31 ]. Similarly, participants with communication disorders in the study by Hickey and colleagues [ 25 ] indicated using images as a helpful communication strategy during clinical situations [ 25 ].

A recent scoping review aimed to identify types of decision-making for individuals with aphasia demonstrated that using images to support these individuals’ decisions was only included in two research studies. Using images to support task performance was considered a strategy, but it was used in only one study [ 32 ]. Indeed, there is little evidence of the relationship between visual cues and their effectiveness in the decision-making process for patients with communication disorders [ 31 ]. However, it has been reported that visual aids improve the decision-making capacity of individuals with dementia in comprehending medical information, employ supportive reasons, and relate this information to their own situation, and contain the potential for judges who majored or are majoring in speech-language pathology to reach a stronger consensus when determining the decision-making capacity of individuals with dementia [ 31 ]. Still, it is recognised that utilising these strategies helps healthcare professionals determine, in a safer way, the ability of patients with communication disorders to make their own decisions [ 31 , 33 , 34 ].

The forms of communication are also facilitating strategies. The respondents emphasised multimodal and oral communication as “very important”. Some literature suggests that interventions with patients with aphasia often focus on training non-verbal augmentative communication strategies such as using communication books, computerised systems, gestures, writing, or drawing [ 35 , 36 ]. Nevertheless, these strategies frequently do not generalise to natural situations [ 37 ]. The research by Purdy and Van Dyke [ 36 ], although with a very small sample, concluded that eight sessions of multimodal communication training surpassed the use of other approaches [ 36 ]. In accordance with our results, studies on people with chronic aphasia advocate the use of multimodal communication since it includes multiple augmentative and alternative resources [ 38 ]. Other studies states that this type of communication improves the communicative competence of people with aphasia [ 38 , 39 ].

Moreover, research shows that oral communication, accompanied by multimodal communication (e.g., images, drawings, gestures, and graphics), promotes comprehension and expression [ 8 , 38 ]. The participants with communication disorders in Howe and colleagues’ study [ 20 ] also indicated that communication becomes easier when there are several alternatives to speech. Notably, while the scientific community recognises the potential of multimodal communication [ 31 ], globally, this type of communication has been implemented in multiple contexts (e.g., health and education), as it provides a very consistent form of communication [ 40 ]. Nevertheless, there are still many aspects to investigate regarding multimodal communication.

A recent scoping review showed the lack of literature encouraging the use of multimodality by individuals with aphasia concerning decision-making [ 32 ]. The importance of gesture use in multimodal communication has also been increasing significantly. Some literature demonstrates that meaning-laden gestures are more likely to attract visual attention than more abstract gestures [ 37 ]. Patients with aphasia are more likely to fixate on gestures during speech than healthy participants [ 37 ]. Another recent study added the notion that gestures served social and linguistic functions. More specifically, gestures could ratify clinicians’ proxy turns, turn allocation, and turn repair. Additionally, it has been reported that gesture is an effective support for the repair of conversation breakdown typical of persons with language deficits [ 41 ]. Furthermore, neuroimaging studies reported a close link at the neural level for the semantic processing of auditory and visual information during communication. Thus, these findings encourage the integration of co-speech gestures during aphasia treatment to improve functional communication for people with aphasia [ 42 ].

In terms of formal strategies, simplified language and structured pauses were “very important”. A recent scoping review on decision-making for individuals with aphasia highlights that the strategy of simplified language is significantly referenced in various articles as a facilitator in conveying verbal information to individuals with aphasia, enabling them to make decisions [ 32 ]. Others state that using simple language helps the patient understand what is being said, avoiding misunderstandings [ 28 , 43 ].

The other strategy considered “very important” is structured pause. Like many of the strategies mentioned earlier, we also did not find specific literature on this in the context of PC. However, research on decision-making for individuals with compromised communication has shown that it is essential to make pauses during information transmission [ 29 , 32 ]. In other studies, patients indicated that, during a conversational situation, it is important for them to have extra time/pauses from clinicians to understand the conveyed message [ 25 ]. The same authors also mentioned the need for extra time/pauses to express themselves.

Lastly, in the group of assistive technologies, the strategies considered “very important” had lower percentages than the other categories. Utilising high-tech products that require extensive training may be challenging since brief interventions may be used in PC [ 2 ]. However, using low-tech support products is very relevant in PC [ 2 ]. Pollens described using several low-tech techniques (e.g., low-tech communication board and written tools for communicating advance directives) to support patients in PC [ 2 , 4 , 44 ]. It is important to point out that there are some preconceived ideas regarding implementing support products [ 8 ]. In general, professionals believe that allocating a particular support product depends on a lengthy and time-consuming assessment and is, therefore, not viable for people at the end of life [ 8 ]. According to Kelly (2019), quoted by Pollens [ 2 ], in PC, evaluations are rarely formal, requiring speed in creating and implementing the different materials.

Nevertheless, AAC in PC increased patients’ quality of life, as they could communicate their needs and wants to their loved ones and the healthcare team [ 45 ]. Although the great importance of support products in supported communication is recognised, the costs associated with equipment are often quite high [ 46 ]. In addition, generational differences, literacy, and lack of experience with electronic devices can also interfere with the acceptance and implementation of technological equipment [ 7 ]. In the case of people with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, it was reported that some patients prefer to use low-tech products (e.g., tables with images) to communicate with their families [ 7 ]. This type of product was considered “very important” by the therapists in this study. For these patients, tools based on AAC are essential for promoting autonomy and improving communication, life quality, and survival [ 47 ]. However, it should be emphasised that although support technologies have immense potential for promoting communicative functionality, especially in people with complex communication needs, they must be used in accordance with the particularities of each individual; otherwise, they could present a barrier to participation [ 48 ].

Although our study focuses more on the most important strategies to implement in PC, we consider that there is a significant gap in specific literature. Indeed, individuals with aphasia, dementia, or any other pathology compromising communication have the same communicative needs as people receiving PC. Furthermore, the fact that there were no differences between the groups studied is not surprising, since communication strategies can extend across different clinical settings based on the specific characteristics of each person rather than the particular setting.

Limitations

The size of the sample may limit the results. Specifically, the fact that the sample is rather small may explain the lack of statistically significant differences between SLTs with PC experience and those SLTs without experience in this area. Moreover, although the study was centred on the two strategies given the greatest importance, this does not mean the other strategies are unimportant. Furthermore, there may be other strategies than those presented in the study, so it is recognised that the different groups of strategies may be incomplete.

In this study, it was observed that verbal and non-verbal strategies were those that were given greater importance by SLTs in the context of communication with adults undergoing PC. There were no differences in perception, in terms of importance, between SLTs with PC experience and SLTs without PC experience, although it was noted that SLTs with experience tend to place greater importance on the form of oral communication.

Through their work, the SLT can implement strategies adapted to different types of communication disorders, helping to personalise and optimise the care provided. It is important that, in the future, more research be conducted on this topic since it may help SLTs improving their clinical interventions in the field of PC and guide the healthcare team in how to best communicate with patients.

Data availability

The data that support the findings of this study are available on request from the corresponding author.

Abbreviations

Augmentative and Alternative Communication

Palliative Care

Speech-Language Therapist

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CD, the principal investigator, contributed to the conceptualization, study design, data collection, data analysis and manuscript preparation. ITR: Support for data analysis and assistance in manuscript writing. HG: Support in statistical analysis. ITR, HG and ID: critical revisions of the manuscript. ID: Study guidance, support in structuring the methodological design and final manuscript review. All contributed to the intellectual content of the manuscript and have read and approved the manuscript.

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The study complied with the ethical principles set out in the Declaration of Helsinki (2013), and ethical procedures were accomplished via analysis and approval of the study by an independent Ethical Committee (Comissão de Ética para a Saúde – Centro Hospitalar de São João [Ethics Committee of the University Hospital Center of São João]) with the reference 60/19. All professionals participated in the study anonymously. Informed consent was obtained online from all participants included in the study by selecting a tick box indicating they understood the terms of the study and consented.

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Dias, C., Rodrigues, I.T., Gonçalves, H. et al. Communication strategies for adults in palliative care: the speech-language therapists’ perspective. BMC Palliat Care 23 , 49 (2024). https://doi.org/10.1186/s12904-024-01382-x

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