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Position Paper on ‘Communication competency is a skill’

Position Paper on ‘Communication competency is a skill’

It is a fact that communication competency is a skill, and it is not just mere talk. Skilful communication is characterized by words that are effective, sophisticated and sensitive. Every human being has their own skill levels of communication and this are determined by their current environment. They are always aware about what is taking place in different social situations. Also, they easily interpret other people’s meanings and messages according to what has been communicated (Adams, 2001). Effective communicators use appropriate and effective methods of making sure others understand what they are communicating. Furthermore, they have the ability of managing and entering conversations smoothly. This is in contrast to people who do not have the skill of communication. The latter tend to be rude, abrasive, not easily understood when engaging in a conversation. Moreover, when other people are communicating to them, they do not seem to grasp the point.

In order for a person to be a competent communicator, they must have a thorough knowledge of grammatical and linguistic rules. This helps them to comprehend and produce sentences that are in various languages. Psycholinguistics and linguistics refer to this as having linguistic competence. Competent communicators are aware about social rules that exist concerning this matter (O’Keefe, 2002). They know the proper language to use depending on the people they are with. People’s expressions act as a guideline and means to interact and communicate effectively. It also involves speaking correctly, and it is referred to as sociolinguistic competence. Communication competency is achieved when people realize their social and personal goals from their conversations. They have the skill of knowing what the other speaker is talking about beforehand. This is referred to as “reading between the lines” and is known as functional competence.

It is easy to know competent people due to their communication skills just be observing them. They seem to be naturally perfect in the skill of competent communication. Communication is embodied into their system and not separate from them. People who are competent communicators are often extremely successful professional and personally. Research has found that they are most likely to benefit from professional advancement, raises and promotions. Since they have the skill of communication competence, their marriages and friendships are often of high quality (O’Keefe, 2002).

Competent communicators have mastered their skill and thus, achieve their goals and that of others. They tend to be extremely sensitive to other people, and this makes them be liked. People like others who help them and in turn, personal relationships are improved. Having the skill of communication competence helps people in improving their physical health (Burleson, 2003). The competent communicator makes information regarding lifestyles and behaviors become known. Since they are extremely persuasive, they have a lot of power over people. For example, they can easily ensure risky behaviors among people are reduced. Research has proven the latter to be true as it affects people’s health.

In conclusion, it is indeed true that communication competence is a skill. Before one masters, the skill of communication, they must obtained as much insight and knowledge that is needed. Furthermore, they should use it for the benefit others as well as their own. In turn, they will be recognized as being effective and competent communicators.


Adams, C.  (2001). Pro-social bias in theories of interpersonal communication competence: Must good communication be nice? Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc.

Burleson, B. (2003). Emotional support skills. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates, Inc.

O’Keefe, D. (2002). Persuasion: Theory and research 2nd ed. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.

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