What Is Oral Communication? Advantages, Disadvantages

3 min readDec 23, 2019

Tutorial Topic: What is oral communication, oral communication definition, oral communication advantages, oral communication disadvantages and how to make oral communication effective?

What is Oral Communication?

Oral Communication Definition: In oral communication, spoken words are used. It includes face-to-face conversations, speech, telephonic conversation, video, radio, television, voice over internet.

In oral communication, communication is influenced by pitch, volume, speed and clarity of speaking. Oral communication means spoken communication or communication through speech.

Oral Communication Definition

Oral communication takes place in face-to-face conversations, group discussions, telephone calls and other circumstances in which spoken word is used to express meaning.

Ricky W. Griffin

Oral communication takes place when spoken words are used to transfer information and understanding form on person to another.

S. K. Kapur

Oral Communication Advantages

Oral communication advantages are mentioned below:

Oral Communication Disadvantages

Oral communication disadvantages are mentioned below:

  1. Poor Retention: The listener cannot retain oral messages in his memory for a long time. The speaker himself may not recall what he actually said.
  2. No Record: Oral communication does not provide any record for future reference. In the absence of arecord, oral messages have no legal validity.
  3. Imprecise: People usually take less care when speaking than when writing. Therefore, spoken words tend to be less precise than written words. Often the exact point the speaker is trying to make is lost in a mass of words.

How to Make Oral Communication Effective?

The following steps should be taken to make oral communication effective:

  1. Precision: An oral message becomes more effective when it is precise and concise.
  2. Example: It is better to say ‘cut down costs by ` 100 instead of saying ‘reduce costs’. The message should not be vague or incomplete. Words ought to mean clearly what they are intended to say.
  3. Right words: The first caution is to ensure that you know the meaning of the words that you use. Some words have more than one meaning while some others carry different meanings for different persons. Be sure about what your words will convey to a trained reader.
  4. Example: City, town and metropolis are three different words and care should be exercised before using them. You will find that the word ‘metro’ has at least three different meanings in day-today usage. Find them out for yourself.
  5. Therefore, words should be chosen carefully and their meaning clarified in the context of usage. The speaker should not presume that the listener would mean the same thing from a word, which s/he means.
  6. Avoid Hackneyed Phrases and Clichés: Speakers often use hackneyed phrases and clichés like ‘you know’, ‘I see’, ‘you see’, ‘what I mean’, ‘isn’t,’ etc.
  7. Such phrases interrupt the flow of speech and obstruct the quick grasp of meaning besides causing boredom. Speakers should ensure that they do not use these phrases unconsciously or consciously.
  8. Most of us use them as connectives, filling up a gap when we do not have the correct word/phrase. Keeping them consciously out of your usage would mean that you will have to remain silent for those gaps. But don’t worry. Once you stop using fillers like those, appropriate words will come to you with a little effort at articulation.
  9. Conviction: A speaker must have conviction in what he says. Careful understanding, sincerity of speech, and intelligent planning are required to develop conviction in speech.

Importance of Oral Communication

The importance of oral communication/ presentation can be discussed in the following points:

Tools for Oral Communication

A verbal tool, in the parlance of business communication, is a manner of message exchange that would lead to interaction of the sender and the receiver through gestures, eyes, voice or video images.

Thus, verbal communication would essentially include tools such as:

  1. Meetings
  2. Seminars
  3. Product and service demonstrations
  4. Trade fairs
  5. Interviews for jobs
  6. Video phones
  7. Video conference
  8. Body language
  9. Business Communication: “ K.K. Sinha, Golgotia Publishing Company.
  10. Business Communication: “M.K. Sehgal, Vandana Khetrapal, Excel Books.
  11. Essentials of Business Communication: Rajendra Pal, J.S Korlahalli, Sultan Chand & Sons.

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Originally published at https://www.geektonight.com on December 23, 2019.




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