“A process by which information is exchanged between individuals through a common system of symbols, signs, or behaviour; exchange of information; personal rapport.”
-Merriam-Webster Online Dictionary
There are three main categories of face-to-face communication:
|Verbal||Verbal communication is the use of words and sounds.|
|Para-verbal||Para-verbal communication is based on how we say the words. Our mood or frame of mind would determine how we say the words. This would be impacted by the speed of our speech and our intonation.|
|Non-verbal||This is about the messages we send through body language. This includes gestures, facial expressions and even distance.|
Written communication can include any communication method using writing e.g. emails, letters, reports, memos minutes. All written communication should be clear and concise. Remember that tone is also present in written communication, so choose the words and format carefully.
Golden Rules For Writing Letters (including memos, faxes and emails)
- Give your letter a heading if it will make it easier for the reader to understand your purpose.
- Decide what you are going to say before you start to write. Knowing what you want to say before writing will help keep your message clear and organized.
- Use short sentences.
- Put separate ideas in separate paragraphs.
- Use short words that everyone can understand.
- Think about your reader. Your reader:
- must be able to see exactly what you mean – your letters should be CLEAR.
- must be given all the necessary information – your letters should be COMPLETE.
- is probably a busy person with no time to waste – your letters should be CONCISE.
- must be written in a sincere, polite tone – your letters should be COURTEOUS.
- should not be distracted by mistakes in grammar, punctuation or spelling – your letters should be CORRECT.
E-mail is becoming a standard way of communicating in many organizations. Just as with the telephone, there are some standard practices related to its use.
- E-mail users expect their messages to be answered within 24-48 hours.
- Don’t use all capital letters unless you want to be perceived as SCREAMING AT YOUR CUSTOMERS!
- No one likes to get a form letter. Write a personal response to your customer’s e-mail, adopting a similar tone to the original message.
- Consider how your company presents itself in other media to the marketplace and write your e-mail accordingly.
- Customers expect your e-mail to be professional and competently written.
- Every e-mail is a written document and, therefore, sensitive to legal issues – be careful what you write.
Vocabulary, Slang and Jargon
For a list of vocabulary that includes words like pet-peeve, feedback, gestures, visit quizlet.com
Jargon is defined as “special words or expressions that are used by a particular profession or group and are difficult for others to understand.”
An example of jargon: Pick the low hanging fruit – Choose the simplest option or avenue to accomplish a task.” yourdictionary.com