Communication Medium



The essay below defines the process of communication and its mediums, outlines the main types of mediums, and describes why it is important to carefully choose the right way of communication when trying to deliver a message to recipients. Communication and its mediums. Communication is a very important aspect of everyday life. From the time we are born we are involved in this process. It’s one of the very first skills we learn in life, it’s something we do every day, and still the huge amount of mistakes are often made on a day-to-day basis when people try to communicate with each other.

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Why? Well first of all we have to identify “Communication”. According to Henry McClave “Communication can be defined as the process by which ideas, information, options, attitudes and feelings are conveyed from one person to another. ” It can be shown like this: From this model we can see that a message is transmitted from Sender to Receiver using a Medium. “The medium is the means to transmit the message. ” (McClave, 1997) Michael Martinez thinks that being aware of the different types of communication medium available to you will help you communicate effectively.

A communication medium is simply “how” your message is sent to the receiver. It is often referred to as the communication channel. It’s critical to realize that whenever you are communicating the medium you use to communicate your message is just as important as the message itself. If you use the wrong medium, your message may never get through to the receiver or may be misunderstood. McClave defines some of the factors which should be taken into consideration when choosing the best medium: •Purpose of communication

•Complexity of the message Need for a record •Importance of immediate feedback •Distance between sender and receiver •Need for personal touch •Cost Martinez takes a look at some of the different types of business communication media available: Face-to-Face Communication Face-to-face communication is any type of verbal or non-verbal communication where you are in the same physical location as the receiver. Face-to-face communication is very powerful. You can communicate verbally with the words you speak as well as non-verbally through body language.

It also allows you to get immediate feedback from the receiver so you can adjust how you are delivering your message if necessary. Some examples of face-to-face communication include informal hallway chats, project meetings, annual performance reviews, and job interviews. Two-Way Remote Communication Two-way remote communication is when you and the receiver are not in the same physical spaces but are able to receive real-time feedback from each other. Although you are able to receive immediate feedback from the receiver, the feedback is usually limited compared to face-to-face communication.

Some examples of two-way remote communication include video conferencing, teleconferencing, cell phone calls, sms (i. e. texting) and walkie-talkie conversations. Written Communication Written communication is any type of communication that involves the written word. This can involve both formal and informal communications. A key distinction between written communication and face-to-face communication is that feedback from the receiver may not be immediate. Although most of us consider ourselves honest and ethical, we’re all human and can forget things we’ve said or misunderstood things we’ve heard.

One of the major benefits of written communication is that it can be used to document what has been said or agreed to. It also can be used to clarify ideas to avoid misunderstandings. Some examples of written communication include letters, email, contracts, sms, reports and intranet content. Social Media Communication Social media has become a very common form of communication. It combines characteristics of some of the other forms of communication such as written communication and two-way remote communication.

It allows for real-time feedback with a written record of what has been communicated. What makes social media so powerful is the way it enables team collaboration. Examples of social media communication include instant messaging, Microsoft SharePoint, Facebook, LinkedIn, wikis and Twitter. Many of the web-based project management tools are also considered to be social media tools since they enable better collaboration. One-Way Audio and Video Communication Another type of communication medium is one-way audio and video.

With this type of communication you are recording your message to be listened to or viewed by your receiver at some time of their choosing. Examples include voicemail, podcasts and YouTube videos. Podcasts and videos are excellent for sharing information, especially for teaching purposes. You can present a lot of information that the receiver can go over at their convenience and as many times as they like. Voicemail is a different creature. You usually leave a voicemail because the receiver wasn’t able to take your phone call. It is what I call a “plan B” action.

Because of this, a strategic communicator will have planned what he will say in the voicemail before making the call. Conclusion. Communication is a huge part of human life. People communicate from the time they are born. Probably that’s why sometimes there is a wrong perception that communication is easy. Communication is a complex and difficult skill, which involves lots of studying and practical exercising. One of the most important aspects of successful communication is choosing the right medium for conveying the message to the recipient.

Failure to choose the right channel can result in serious disruptions in the communication process, can lead to misunderstanding, poor performance, wrong feedback and loss of the meaning of the original message. According to Martinez, strategically choosing the specific types of communication medium will help to successfully manage the business. The purpose of the communication, the receiver of the message, and the type of information should be always considered when determining the best business communication media for the message.


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