Mastering the Art of Effective Communication Skills: Strategies, and Contexts (2023)

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Mastering the Art of Effective Communication Skills: Strategies, and Contexts (1)

Category: Behavioral Economics.

Communication is the driving force behind all human interactions. It enables harmonious relationships at school, work, and in your personal life.

But what is communication, and how can we get better at it?

Let’s explore what communication is and the types, contexts, and skills necessary for mastering effective communication.

What is Communication?

Communication is the process of transmitting information from one party to another. It comprises a sender, recipient, and message, all subject to various influences that interfere with communication. There are four main types of communication. Some scenarios like a Conversation, Feedback, and Review (CFR) or a marriage proposal can take wrong turns just by poor communication.

Mastering the Art of Effective Communication Skills: Strategies, and Contexts (2)

The four main types of communication are the following.

1. Verbal communication

Verbal communication is the use of spoken language to convey a message.

Some examples of verbal communication are face-to-face communication, phone calls, or information passed through audiovisual media like TV or radio.

2. Non-verbal communication

Non-verbal communication is using body language to convey a message.

Some examples of non-verbal communication are gestures, posture, and tone.

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3. Written communication

Written communication is using written language to convey a message.

Some examples of written communication include letters, emails, blogs, books, and other text forms.

4. Visual communication

Visual communication is using imagery to convey a message.

Some examples of visual communication include graphs, charts, infographics, maps, logos, and other representations.

Mastering the Art of Effective Communication Skills: Strategies, and Contexts (3)

The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.

George Bernard Shaw

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Elements of Communication

Communication consists of many factors, and mastering communication is a continuous process. Various communication elements are necessary to grasp the method of effectively conveying information.

(Video) The Art of Effective Communication | Communication Skills | Brian Tracy

Luckily, all communication types have the following eight features in common.

1. Source

The source is the origin of communication, typically a person who creates and sends the message through verbal, non-verbal, written, or visual media. They choose the right words, timing, and medium for their communication.

2. Message

Your message is the meaning you want to convey through words, speech, actions, or visual communication. The source encodes the meaning so the recipient will understand; otherwise, communication breaks down. For example, a message in English loses meaning to a Spanish-speaking audience.

3. Channel

The channel is how a message moves from source to recipient. Common communication channels include letters, videos, billboards, emails, public address systems, one-on-one conversations, tweets, and newspapers.

4. Recipient

A recipient is a person or audience who receives and interprets the message from the source. The recipient can either understand the meaning as intended or unintentionally misinterpret it. For example, constructive criticism may trigger hostility if the recipient has stress, experiences distraction, or has low self-esteem.

5. Environment

An environment is the physical or psychological atmosphere in which communication happens. A physical environment includes the location, such as a conference room, virtual classroom, stage, lighting, sound, and other equipment. A psychological environment has one’s culture, religion, values, mindsets, mental health, and emotions.

6. Context

A communication context means the expectations of the source and recipient, directly or indirectly affecting how a message is sent or received. For example, a business context sets expectations like formal attire and professional language. In contrast, a party context is more relaxed regarding dress code and language.

7. Feedback

Feedback is a message from the recipient to the source in response to communication. Feedback can also be verbal, nonverbal, or written to indicate whether the recipient understood the message accurately. If the message misses the mark, the source can clarify or try a different medium.

8. Interference

Interference refers to noise from physical or psychological sources interfering with the message. Physical noise can be car horns or construction sounds during a meeting; psychological noise can be intrusive thoughts that interfere with concentration.

Mastering the Art of Effective Communication Skills: Strategies, and Contexts (4)

Barriers to Communication

A communication barrier distorts your message at any point. When communicating, you might experience these roadblocks. Knowing them ahead of time will help you create solutions when encountering these challenges.

Examples of communication barriers include the following.

  • Using jargon or complicated terms
  • Lack of interest or motivation
  • Disabilities like speech, hearing, or visual impairments
  • Cultural and language differences
  • Stereotypes and prejudices
  • Power outages or internet downtime affecting communication tools

Communication Skills

Communication skills are capabilities that help you convey and receive messages effectively. These include verbal, non-verbal, and listening skills.

Let’s dive deeper into the three skills below.

1. Verbal communication skills

Verbal communication skills enable you to choose the right words to communicate the intended message and adjust these words to suit the listener. For example, you verbally communicate differently to a child, spouse, friend, colleague, manager, client, or group. As the recipient, verbal skills involve asking understanding questions, maintaining a conversation, giving feedback, and getting clarification from the source.

2. Non-verbal communication skills

Non-verbal communication skills enable you to use facial expressions, body language, tone, and other cues for effective communication. Since non-verbal communication can be subconscious, it can reinforce or undermine your message without you knowing it. All sorts of bias should be eliminated from the thought process. For example,Anchoring Bias can cloud the thinking and hence impact the outcome of the communication.

Improve non-verbal communication through practice: prepare your message beforehand, rehearse in front of a mirror, record yourself speaking, or have a friend serve as a sounding board.

3. Listening skills

Listening means more than just hearing; you must actively engage in understanding the message. Some active listening skills include maintaining eye contact to show interest, paraphrasing to demonstrate understanding, and asking open-ended questions to encourage clarification. Very often during a conversation effective feedback can be shared only after active listening.

(Video) Master The Art of Flawless Communication | Brian Tracy

Communication in Different Contexts

As the communication elements describe, context means the expectations surrounding a message.

Some examples of communication contexts are the following.

1. Physical context or setting

The location, time, weather, noise levels and overall setting impact communication.

For example, you would communicate differently at a library versus at a concert.

2. Past experiences or temporal context

Past experiences can impact your ability to communicate. For example, if a person arrives late for a work meeting because of a medical emergency, the stress and disruption of the experience impair their communication ability before the meeting.

3. Emotional context

Emotional context refers to the relationship between the source and recipient.

For example, a person may experience tension when speaking with a manager versus experience relaxation when speaking with a close friend.

These contexts affect communication, so knowing where each person comes from is essential to compelling your message.

Technology and Communication

Technology has a massive impact on communication in positive and negative ways. For example, communication today occurs much faster and reaches wider audiences through instant messaging apps and social media. It also enables remote working through video conferencing and collaboration tools.

Unfortunately, the instant nature of communication technology means too many messages compete for our attention, and often negative messages gain prominence. It’s also easier to communicate negative messages because devices make us anonymous.

One way to harness technology in communication is through netiquette (internet etiquette).

These practices guide online communication to promote respect and empathy for all parties, such as the following.

  • Use respectful and empathetic language
  • Maintain a friendly and professional tone
  • Reply to emails on time
  • Read content thoroughly before responding
  • Use simple sentences for clarity
  • Ask for consent before sharing other people’s content
  • Proofread messages before posting or sending

OKRs and Communication to Power Strategy

OKRs, or Objectives and Key Results, is an organization’s goal-setting framework to drive focus, alignment, and performance. Initially popularized by Intel and later adopted by companies like Google, OKRs provide a clear structure for setting and tracking goals. In the interconnected business landscape world, effective OKR is the key to unlocking the true potential of strategy execution. An OKR communication strategy can be established within an organization to align teams toward a shared vision and drive remarkable success by establishing solid and engaging communication.


  1. What is communication?

    Communication is the process of transmitting information from one party to another. It comprises a sender, recipient, and message, all subject to various influences that interfere with communication.

  2. What are the four main types of communication?

    The four types are verbal, non-verbal, written, and visual communication.

  3. What are the three essential communication skills?

    The three essential communication skills are verbal, non-verbal, and listening skills.


While communication is complex, you now have the tools to master it effectively. The right communication skills can minimize misunderstanding and clarify your messages. Continuously honing your communication skills will create personal growth and growth for your organization.

To learn more about achieving effective communication for your organization.

Sign up with today

(Video) How to speak so that people want to listen | Julian Treasure

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What are the 5 steps of effective communication strategy? ›

Five Easy Steps to Better Communication
  • Listening. Effective listening requires concentration, tolerance and sensitivity. ...
  • Expressing yourself. First you need to listen to yourself to know what you want to get across. ...
  • Interpreting body language. ...
  • Being aware of your differences. ...
  • Resolving conflict.

What are the strategies to become an effective communication? ›

Strategies for effective verbal communication
  • Focus on the issue, not the person. ...
  • Be genuine rather than manipulative. ...
  • Empathize rather than remain detached. ...
  • Be flexible towards others. ...
  • Value yourself and your own experiences. ...
  • Use affirming responses.

What is the art of effective communication? ›

Effective communication can be defined as the delivering of information that is accurately received, in the least amount of time, without being an emotional burden. We can conserve our time, which is our greatest asset, by effectively communicating.

What are the main points of the art of communication? ›

The art of communication involves the transmission of information from one source to another to convey a specific message in order to elicit a desired reaction or result. Communications strategies and plans therefore focus on delivering messages effectively to obtain specific results.

How do you master communication skills and confidence? ›

How to Communicate with Confidence at Work
  1. Be Prepared. ...
  2. Think About Your Message. ...
  3. Be Aware of Your Body Language. ...
  4. Learn From Others. ...
  5. Go Beyond Your Comfort Zone. ...
  6. Ask Questions. ...
  7. Practice Your Communication Skills. ...
  8. Believe in Yourself.
Aug 19, 2021

What are the 4 essential keys to effective communication? ›

The four keys all refer to empathetic skills: Awareness, Listening, Speaking and Dialogue.

What are the 4 key tips to effective communication? ›

Speak clearly, maintain an even tone, and make eye contact. Keep your body language relaxed and open. Wrap up with a summary and then stop. Summarize your response and then stop talking, even if it leaves a silence in the room.

What are the 7 types of communication strategies? ›

Here are seven communication strategies that any business or firm can use.
  • Understand the Full Spectrum of Communication Skills. ...
  • Talk in Person. ...
  • Encourage Participation in Speaking-Focused Organizations. ...
  • Focus on Listening. ...
  • Ask Open-Ended Questions. ...
  • Pay Attention to Body Language and Tone of Voice.
Mar 28, 2017

What is the most effective way of communication? ›

1. When face to face is the best means of communication. Face-to-face communication is often an effective strategy for managing conflicts at work and having difficult conversations. After all, taking time to talk to someone in person can convey integrity, honesty and authenticity.

What is an effective communication style at work? ›

When working with a direct communicator: it's most effective to be clear and concise, and avoid unnecessary details. While dominant communicators must continually work on patience and sensitivity, co-workers should try to avoid taking their bluntness and lack of subtlety as personal criticism.

What are the 3 types of communication skills? ›

Five Types of Communication
  • Verbal Communication. Verbal communication occurs when we engage in speaking with others. ...
  • Non-Verbal Communication. What we do while we speak often says more than the actual words. ...
  • Written Communication. ...
  • Listening. ...
  • Visual Communication.
Jul 12, 2018

What are the 3 most important elements of communication? ›

Put all three elements together — sender, receiver, and message — and you have the communication process at its most basic.

What is an example of art as a communication? ›

Art communicates in different ways, including through symbols or allegory, in which a figure stands for an abstract idea. For example, in the Eugène Delacroix painting Liberty Leading the People, a striding woman represents the concept of liberty.

How do I communicate with greater clarity confidence and credibility? ›

Confidence and credibility come from clarity and conciseness. You need to have a clear purpose and a concise message that conveys your main points, benefits, and calls to action. Use simple and direct words, short sentences, and clear transitions. Avoid filler words, vague expressions, and unnecessary repetitions.

What are some basic communication skills you will need to master for work? ›

Some of the most important communication skills for any job are presentation, active listening, nonverbal communication, giving/taking feedback, and others. Improve your communication skills by learning how to listen, noticing nonverbal cues, and practicing oral communication.

What are the three 3 keys to effective communication? ›

“Communication works for those who work at it.” Communication is part of the foundation to any successful working relationship. Effective communication includes clarity, conciseness, and coherence between all parties.

What is the most important factor for effective communication? ›

1. Listening. Listening is one of the most important aspects of communication. Successful listening is not just about understanding spoken or written information but also an understanding of how the speaker feels during communication.

What are the 6 keys of powerful communication? ›

Six keys to effective communication
  • Communicate persuasively. Refer to objective criteria such as industry practice, regulations, policy and precedent. ...
  • Use simple language. ...
  • Prepare to present your ideas clearly. ...
  • Be curious, listen and ask questions. ...
  • Make requests, not demands. ...
  • Body language and tone of voice are important.

What are 6 ways to communicate effectively? ›

Here are a few tips for developing your communication skills:
  • Practice active listening. Effective communicators are always good listeners. ...
  • Focus on nonverbal communication. ...
  • Manage your own emotions. ...
  • Ask for feedback. ...
  • Practice public speaking. ...
  • Develop a filter.
Jun 7, 2021

What are the 8 ways to communicate strategy more effectively? ›

Here are eight tips to help you implement an effective communication strategy within your organization:
  • Use Great Communication Tools. ...
  • Meet with Employees Regularly. ...
  • Recognize Achievements. ...
  • Give Clear Instructions. ...
  • Create an Open Environment. ...
  • Make Time for One-on-Ones. ...
  • Use Visuals. ...
  • Be Open to Feedback.
Feb 3, 2020

What are six communication techniques? ›

The six leadership communication skills are: (1) written, (2) verbal, (3) presentation, (4) non-verbal, (5) cross-cultural, and (6) listening.

How do you describe someone with good communication skills? ›

Communication Skills
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Confident, articulate, and professional speaking abilities (and experience)
  • Empathic listener and persuasive speaker.
  • Writing creative or factual.
  • Speaking in public, to groups, or via electronic media.
  • Excellent presentation and negotiation skills.

What is the difference between communication and effective communication? ›

Communication is the process of sharing information, ideas, and thoughts from one person to another. It can be verbal or non-verbal, written or spoken. Effective communication, on the other hand, is the ability to convey a message in the manner intended by the sender, with the recipient understanding the same message.

What is the most productive communication style? ›

Assertive communication is commonly regarded as the most productive and desired communication style, especially in a working environment. To improve your assertive communication skills consider these suggestions: Express your needs and ideas with confidence with "I" statements. Practice active listening .

What are the golden rules of communication? ›

That the Rule is so universal indicates how clearly we, as a species, have worked out that a good level of mutuality is the essence of being together. The Golden Rule of communication, then, would be: 'Communicate with others as you would have them communicate with you. '

What is the importance of effective communication? ›

Effective communication is essential for managing relationships with your staff, customers and stakeholders. Poor communication can ruin relationships, and potentially result in lost sales and a damaged reputation. Read how to improve your business communication with staff, suppliers and customers.

What are the 5 elements of effective communication explain each? ›

The elements required to be effective are trust, respect, understanding, empathy and resolution. We will explore each of these. There are many ways to implement these behaviors and this webinar will examine the basis of this concept, how to learn the necessary elements and why each is so important.

What are the five 5 principles of effective communication in the workplace? ›

  • Know the audience.
  • Listen to the audience.
  • Tailor the message.
  • Motivate the audience.

What are the 3 parts of effective communication? ›


The act of communicating involves verbal, nonverbal, and paraverbal components.

What are the 5 C's of communication? ›

Here are the five C's of effective communication:
  • Be clear. To communicate effectively, you have to know what you want and take ownership for your own needs. ...
  • Be concise. Keep your requests direct, simple and to the point. ...
  • Provide a compelling request. ...
  • Be curious. ...
  • Be compassionate.
Sep 10, 2018

What are the 7 important guidelines for effective communication? ›

The seven C's of communication is a list of principles for written and spoken communications to ensure that they are effective. The seven C's are: clear, correct, complete, concrete, concise, considered and courteous.

What are the 7 pillars of effective communication? ›

According to the seven Cs, communication needs to be: clear, concise, concrete, correct, coherent, complete and courteous.


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