Communication is what we do every day, and it is vital to our existence. Civilizations would not have developed without communication. Communication is basically the process of sharing of thoughts or ideas. It happens between two people or among groups of people. It’s impossible to imagine the modern world without it. You watch television, listen to the radio, or talk to a friend over the phone. On the other hand, as communicating is vital to the civilized and educated man, it can only be effective if the idea is conveyed well.
How do we convey ideas?
There are basically two ways to express yourself—writing and speaking. Why do we have to pay attention to how we write or speak when we do these tasks every day? Should we have deliberate what we write or speak to someone else? The answer is yes—if your purpose is to ensure you are understood by your reader, listener, recipient, or audience.
How do you make sure you the person you are talking to or writing to understands you?
Know the idea you want to impart
In other words, make sure you know and understand what you will be talking about. Do you want to talk to a friend about a new gadget you found advertised online? Do you want to discuss a recent asteroid’s close encounter with Earth? If so, make sure you know about it. It’s ridiculous to open an idea and then draw back because you realize you know too little about it. Good writers and speakers do extensive research before making reports or presentations.
Know the person you are talking to
Are you going to talk about the latest showbiz gossip to your 4-year-old son? Will your 85-year-old grandma appreciate discussions about the latest state-of-the-art smartphones? Choose the right topics and the right words for a specific type of listener or reader or audience. Don’t even think these don’t matter, because you leave an impression on people based on what you tell them and how you express yourself.
Know when to sit down and listen
You cannot take the stage all day and force people to behold your egotism. Even Oprah had to keep silent at times to listen to her guests. You, too, should. We all cannot stand someone who wants everyone else to keep lending their ears. Good communication involves interaction, which can happen only when there is exchange of thoughts. As much as you want people to listen to you, you should also listen to them.
The product of communication is understanding, and understanding breeds familiarity. In the end, what matters is that you have passed on knowledge. In so doing, you have made a difference.