Difference between Communication and Effective Communication

Boss to his employee -“I want you to bring the file to my table”.

The boss left the poor employee confused as he forgot to mention the name of the file and the employee also didn’t bother to ask his boss. The boss did communicate to his employee but the message was not clear to his employee - An example of ineffective communication.

Jenny to Duke -“Lets plan out a dinner tonight.“

After the dinner Duke was visibly upset as she was not at all fond of Thai food and the restaurant had no other option. Jenny forgot to mention that she was planning to take Duke to a restaurant which only served Thai food.

In both the above real life situations, the devil called ineffective communication played the culprit. In today’s scenario, the mantra is to effectively communicate. Only communication alone is not important but if an individual acquires the skill to effectively communicate, he has no looking back. Communication is simply the flow of information from the first party (the sender) to the second party (the receiver) irrespective of whether the recipient has properly downloaded the message or not, whereas effective communication is the flow of information in exactly the same manner the sender intends to do so.

“I want water” is communication.

“I want a glass of lukewarm water from the blue jug” is effective communication.

Communication is directly proportional to the choice of words or its content. The more precise and crisp the content is the more effective the communication would be. It is essential for the sender to use the correct words, phrases so that the information reaches the recipient bang on. An individual first must be very clear about what he actually wishes to convey, then the information or the thought should be clearly and sensibly put into correct and meaningful words /phrases also called as encoding. Haphazard words and abstract ideas only create misunderstandings and confusions. The pitch and the tone of the speaker must be loud and clear so that the second party hears it correctly and responds the way the sender actually wants. Don’t stammer or eat words.

The target audience must also be kept in mind while preparing the content of speech. For instance, if one is targeting a young group of college goers, there is no point in using complicated terminologies, corporate jargons or high vocabulary words because they would never be able to relate themselves with the speech resulting to an ineffective communication. Instead it would be wise if the speaker uses some slangs, cracks some jokes in between and creates a friendly atmosphere to capture the attention of the young crowd. It is the prime responsibility of the speaker to cross check with the listeners whether they have downloaded the correct information or not. One must ask questions in between to create interest and make things clear with the second party. Use phrases like “Is it clear?”, “Am I audible?”,” Understood”,” Any Problems? “to make the communication more effective. An individual whenever shares his contact detail with anyone, should make it a habit to cross check with the other person whether he/she has noted the number correctly or not. Dont just go on, try to make eye contact with the listeners and take pauses to make the communication impressive as well as effective. The recipient must also develop a habit to give the sender feedback. If he has not understood the information clearly, it is his duty to ask and verify with the speaker.

Effective communication goes a long way in passing the correct and the desired information to the recipient and the work is accomplished without errors in a short span of time. Effective communication also nullifies the chances of misunderstandings, conflicts and errors which might crop in cases where the message is not clear.

John to employees - “I want the report”.

John to employees - “I want the report on my table by end of the day today and the employee who submits the report at the earliest will get a treat from my side at the college cafeteria”.

In both the above cases communication was done between the boss and the employee but in the first case the message was not clear. In the second case, the boss carefully mentioned the time limit and the reward an employee would get if he is the first one to submit the report. The first is a case of communication and the second effective communication.

To conclude, don’t just communicate, speak sensibly, clearly, convey your message in clear words, don’t complicate things and most importantly don’t forget to crosscheck with the recipient. Effective communication will definitely help the individual to make a mark of his own and stand apart from the crowd.




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