Components of Communication

The process of transmitting and receiving verbal and nonverbal messages is called communication. In simple words, communication is a two way process of exchanging information or ideas. Here we should note that communication will be effective only if the sender receives desired response or reaction from the receiver. Some of the important components of communication are given and discussed below.




Context is an important component of the communication because the message of both oral and written communication begins with the context. Context is a broad concept and includes various aspects such as the type of organization, culture of the society, features of the country, internal and external stimuli etc. These aspects have great influence on how sender translates his ideas into a message. For example every culture has its own conventions for processing and communicating information. Similarly external stimulus prompts sender to send a message whereas internal stimuli (such as sender’s attitude, emotions, past experiences, education, job status etc) influence the way sender communicates his ideas.




The sender of a message is known as “encoder”. The encoder encodes a message by using different symbols (such as words, graphics, pictures etc) depending upon the type of communication i.e. oral or written.  The encoder always try to find those symbols which best describe his message so that the receiver can understand it easily and can give timely response.




Message refers to the core idea which the sender wants to communicate. The sender can use both verbal and nonverbal communication for this purpose. Here the sender must take into consideration the impact of message on receiver. He should carefully examine the context and most importantly the receiver of his message. The sender should know how the receiver will interpret the message and how it may affect their relationship.




Medium refers to the message channel which a sender can use for the purpose of communication. The message channel depends upon the contextual factors as well as the nature of message itself. So basically medium is the choice available with the sender to either write or speak. If the message is long, technical or formal in nature then the sender uses the written channel. On the other hand if the message is urgent or when the immediate response is important then the oral communication is most effective.




The receiver of the message is also known as decoder, reader or listener. There may be more than one decoder for a single message of the sender. Here we should note that both sender and receiver are influenced by the contextual factors such as culture, internal and external stimuli etc. Every receiver perceives the message in his own way depending upon the type of context he is facing. This results in the miscommunication due to the misinterpretation of information by the receiver. Therefore it is very important for the sender to carefully analyze the contextual factors.




When the receiver receives a message he will react with the desired or undesired response. If the receiver clearly understands the message he will give the desired response. Contrary, in case of miscommunication the receiver will give undesired response. The receiver can give feedback in various ways such as oral or written message, an action or simply silence. The success or failure of communication depends upon the feedback given by the receiver.

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