In the recent times of work and lifestyle, communication skills are very significant. Not just in a profession, communication skills are also immensely important in the case of personal relationships. Communicating effectively helps us not just to listen but also understand the other person's perspective. With proper communication, misunderstandings can be avoided, and relationships can be improved.
Through this blog, we will explore what communication is, why should you communicate properly, how can you communicate effectively and the types of communication.
What is Communication?
To put it simply, communication is not just talking but listening and understanding. It is the ability to empathise with what others might be feeling. Communication skills include the action of proper eye contact and body language. Having adequate communication skills will help you build and maintain relationships and feel more confident about in your profession, especially communicating with students.
Why should you have proper communication skills?
Communication will play a significant role in your success. In a classroom or a workplace, there are various people from diverse backgrounds. This is where your good communication skills will help you. It is one of the most essential criteria for improving your quality of life and living standards.
There are many reasons why you should have proper communication skills:
· With better communication skills, you will be able to express yourself better
· Good communication will help you share your ideas with your students in a clear way
· You, as a teacher, will become a better listener and communicate with your students more effectively
· You will become more assertive and confident
· In the world of a teacher, be it communicating with students or teachers, misunderstandings can be avoided with good communication skills.
· Your sense of understanding and empathising will improve
How can you communicate more effectively?
The secret ingredient to communicating effectively is to listen. Let the person in front of you speak without interruption. Not only listen but understand what your students are trying to tell you. If they do not find your communication comfortable, they might hesitate to ask you doubts or even lead to miscommunication.
Once you have attentively listened to your students, it is extremely important to understand their perspectives. Why are they saying what they are saying? Once you understand their point of view, your reply will be more accurate and more self-aware. Understanding will eliminate most of the miscommunication and enable smooth interaction.
It is extremely important to empathise with your students. This will make your tone more sympathetic and understanding. A pivotal part of communication is knowing what to say and how to say it.
How you respond is very significant for effective communication. It would be best if you did not sound defensive or argumentative when providing feedback on someone else's work or ideas or responding to someone’s queries. Also, how you want to communicate and how you can process, respond, and react to your students’ questions or statements need to be done appropriately. This is crucial in any type of communication. You must also understand what your students are trying to express and manoeuvre your strategies and techniques accordingly.
What are the various types of communication?
There are various ways to communicate with a person, but verbal, non-verbal, written, and visual are the main four types. Certain communication requires any one kind of communication, while some utilise concoction of the kinds of communication. For example, a letter is based on the written form of communication, while a presentation requires all four types of communication. For an educational setting, reading, writing, speaking, and listening are the four types of communication skills needed for a successful learning journey.
Let’s dive deep into these forms of communication.
Verbal communication involves communication through a speech or sign. It can be communicated in-person or over the telephone/mobile or even via online like video or audio calls. It can be either synchronous or asynchronous.
Verbal communication is the most common type where messages are communicated in the form of images, drawings or writing. It is the most common form of communication because it is extremely quick and simple to transmit information.
In the world of teaching, verbal communication is extremely convenient and important for a successful teaching experience.
Nonverbal communication is the form of communicating expression without any speech. Nonverbal communication can be established through various mediums like body language, facial expression, proper eye contact, gestures, and tone of voice. Non-verbal communication can take place even by the way you dress. Nonverbal communication often supports or adds to verbal communication. Nonverbal communication is a very effective form of communication because it relies on different means than verbal communication. For example, you might know your student is confused based on their facial expression and body language.
There are many students in a classroom that don't feel comfortable talking or are very shy. Hence, it is extremely crucial for teachers to pick up non-verbal cues. It is important to observe your students’ body language and mood to understand the ambience of the classroom. Since the majority of the non-verbal communication takes place without words, it is also referred to as body language.
Written communication comprises communicating through writing, typing or printing. It is done through mediums like letters, text messages, emails, social media, research papers and books. Businesses may prefer written communication because it has fewer chances of error and can be more formal. For example, communicating a business proposal in writing is more formal and conveys the same to everyone. With written communication, the individual can visit the information any time in the future they want.
Visual communication involves the use of pictorial representation like diagrams, graphs, charts, photographs, maps and logos to transmit messages. It is used in conjunction with verbal or written communication in order to communicate the information effectively. Presentation is a good example where the visuals are accompanied by verbal communication to explain the concept better.
Quick tips for effective communication
· Listen carefully and patiently
· Understand and empathise
· Minimise the potential of miscommunication
· Know your audience
· Accept feedback positively
· Choose the right medium of communication
· Be clear, concise and confident when you communicate
· Keep your tone in mind
· Use appropriate tone, gesture and body language during a non-verbal communication.
· Be aware of potential misinterpretation and misunderstandings.
Effective and proper communication skills are extremely important for success in any profession. Communication plays a key role in a teacher's life because they have to interact with many students and fellow staff members. Hence, it is crucial that they understand the various types of communication and use them appropriately. With the above tips, teachers can improve their communication skills and interact effectively.