Verbal and Non-verbal Communication
Communication necessitates the use of messaging to generate meanings within and across various contexts, cultures and channels. Communication is a two way process involving the exchange of information. A communicator encodes by putting thoughts into words and gestures, and transmits messages to a receiver who decodes the messages by applying meaning to them. In today’s technological age we have to send, receive and process many messages every day. Verbal and non-verbal aspects both assist in the communication process. In personal communications messages are sent on both levels simultaneously. If non-verbal cues and spoken message are incongruous, the flow of communication may be inhibited. Effective communication also involves understanding cultural differences and the emotion behind the information exchanged. It helps us better understand a person or situation and enables us to resolve differences, build trust and respect, and create open environments to support creativity and problem solving. Ineffective communication can lead to misinterpretation, conflict and frustration. Verbal communication encompasses the use of words, voice and pitch. The use of words that are understandable in well constructed sentences aids the communication process, however what one says is not nearly as important as to how it is said. The voice needs to be clear so words are easily understood, and having the ability to use an appropriate voice volume is a fundamental skill in verbal communication. Volume that is too loud can annoy listeners while a very soft volume can express shyness, resulting in loss of interest and loss of authority. The variation of a voice can also influence interpretation. A dull message delivered by an engaging speaker, for example, will be better received than an excellent message delivered by an unenthusiastic speaker who appears uninterested in the topic. Misunderstandings can occur...
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