Communication Competency

Topics: Communication, Nonverbal communication, Writing Pages: 8 (2262 words) Published: February 23, 2014

Communication Competence in the Workplace
Communication is an essential piece of daily life; it is found everywhere you look in either verbal or nonverbal form. The workplace is no different, every person in every workplace uses some form of communication constantly throughout the day, it is important that each person is aware of the signals that are being sent out, verbally and nonverbally, to coworkers, superiors, clients, customers, etc. According to Donald Baack, “Communication may be defined as transmitting, receiving, and processing information. Information consists of any item that evokes or has meaning” (2012, Chap 1). It is important for employees in all organizations to have the ability to communicate effectively and to get the message across clearly, limiting the possibility of misunderstanding. Communication competency consists of knowledge or awareness of different communication elements, such as interpersonal communication skills and soft skills, management communication skills, communication barriers, and listening styles. The communication competence in a workplace is important at all levels of an organization and the higher the overall competence level the better the working environment. Interpersonal Communication Skills

“Interpersonal communication takes place between individuals or one individual with a small set of other people” (Baack, 2012, Chap 1). Everyone has communicates daily with other people, some people are better at this communication than other people are. It is important in an organization that employees and employer have the ability to communicate effectively, because “…communication takes the form of the glue that holds a business together” (Baack, 2012, Chap 1). If the communication system of the organization fails the organization itself with struggle, this is why it is important to employ those that possess interpersonal communication skills, soft skills, needed for effective transmission of messages. Soft Skills

“Soft skills are also known as people skills and personal attributes” (Robles, 2012, p.452). Robles (2011) went on to state the results from a study that found 75% of long-term job success depends on a person’s people skills, while only 25% depended on that person’s technical knowledge. Soft skills are thought to be something that everyone possesses and thus are not taught or worked on in business education, however this is not the case. People can have all the technical knowledge to successfully complete a task and completely lack the ability to effectively communicate the result or the process, which causes misunderstandings and conflict. The implication of some research is that interpersonal communication appears to be just as important as business writing and making professional presentations in business curriculum (Hynes, 2012); however, it is often not included in business curriculum. Verbal Communication

Verbal communication is one way people communicate with each other. When communicating verbally it is important to be clear and confident, especially in the workplace. Poor communication can lead to a hostile or uncomfortable work environment. “Work environment has long been recognized as having a profound effect on employee performance” (Hynes, 2012, p. 466), so it important to keep the work environment comfortable for all employees. Baack (2012) states that conversations are like a dance, in which both parties construct the interaction. Nonverbal Communication

Nonverbal communication refers to a variety of skills, including body movements, gestures, eye contact, touch, facial expression, physical distance, and tone of voice (Baack, 2012). Communicating face-to-face is the only time when nonverbal communication plays a part in a conversation, besides video conferencing and telephone calls. Even with video conferences and telephone calls it is difficult to pick-up on nonverbal cues, this is why face-to-face conversations are...
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