1.7 Conclusion

Communication is an essential component of business. While communication is a natural part of the human experience, it’s important to consider how you will communicate in a positive and effective manner that aligns with your responsibilities and reputation as a business professional.

Reflection Activity


Returning to Naiomi’s observations at the beginning of the chapter, what are some of the ways in which Naiomi can ensure she is communicating with her team effectively?


Quick Quiz


  1. Describe the process of communication.
  2. Name at least four essential components of communication.
  3. What role does context play in communication?
  4. What responsibilities do you have as a communicator?
  5. What are the three attributes of an ethical communicator?



Channel – the channel is the way in which a message or messages travel between source and receiver (McLean, 2005).

Communication – the process of understanding and sharing meaning (Pearson Nelson, 2000).

Context – involves the setting, scene, and expectations of the individuals involved (McLean, 2005).

Decoding – the process of turning communication into thoughts.

Encoding – the process of turning thoughts into communication.

Environment – the atmosphere, physical and psychological, where you send and receive messages (McLean, 2005).

Feedback – messages the receiver sends back to the source.

Group Communication – a dynamic process where a small number of people engage in a conversation (McLean, 2005).

Interaction model – a model of communication describes communication as a process in which participants alternate positions as sender and receiver and generate meaning by sending messages and receiving feedback within physical and psychological contexts (Schramm, 1997).

Interference – anything that blocks or changes the source’s intended meaning of the message (McLean, 2005).

Interpersonal Communication – normally involves two people, and can range from intimate and very personal to formal and impersonal.

Intrapersonal Communication – involves one person; it is often called “self-talk” (Wood, 1997).

Mass Communication – mass communication involves sending a single message to a group.

Meaning – what you share through communication.

Message – the stimulus or meaning produced by the source for the receiver or audience (McLean, 2005).

Nonverbal – any message inferred through observation of another person.

Public Communication – in public communication, one person speaks to a group of people; the same is true of public written communication, where one person writes a message to be read by a small or large group.

Receiver – receives the message from the source, analyzing and interpreting the message in ways both intended and unintended by the source (McLean, 2005).

Sharing – doing something together with one or more person(s).

Source – imagines, creates, and sends the message.

Transaction model – a model of communication that describes communication as a process in which communicators generate social realities within social, relational, and cultural contexts.

Transmission model – a model of communication that describes communication as linear, one-way process in which a sender intentionally transmits a message to a receiver (Ellis & McClintock, 1990).

Understanding – “To understand is to perceive, to interpret, and to relate our perception and interpretation to what we already know.” (McLean, 2003)

Verbal (or oral) Communication – is any message conveyed through speech.

Written Communication – is any message using the written word.

Additional Resources

The International Association of Business Communicators (IABC) is a global network of communication professionals committed to improving organizational effectiveness through strategic communication.

Purdue University’s Online Writing Lab (OWL) provides a wealth of resources for writing projects.

Chapter References

Ellis, R. & McClintock, A. (1990). You take my meaning: Theory into practice in human communication. Edward Arnold.

Habermas, J. (1984). The theory of communicative action. Beacon Press.

Leavitt, H. J. & Mueller, R. A. (1951). Some effects of feedback on communication. Retrieved from http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/001872675100400406

McLean, S. (2005). The basics of interpersonal communication. Allyn Bacon.

Pearson, J. & Nelson, P. (2000). An introduction to human communication: Understanding and sharing. McGraw-Hill.

Schramm, W. (1997). The beginnings of communication study in America. Sage.

Vocate, D. (Ed.). (1994). Intrapersonal communication: Different voices, different minds. Lawrence Erlbaum.

Wood, J. (1997). Communication in our lives. Wadsworth.

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