10 Characteristics of Oral Communication With Examples

Oral communication is a fundamental aspect of human interaction and is essential in both personal and professional settings. It involves the exchange of information through spoken words, either face-to-face or through technology.

In this blog, we will explore 10 characteristics of oral communication and provide examples to illustrate each one.

Definition of oral communication 

“Oral communication is the act of transmitting messages from one person to another through the use of spoken words. It is a process that involves both sending and receiving information, and relies on the effective use of language, tone, and body language.” – Michael J. Cody in “Communication and Learning in the Classroom” 

Check out our detailed article on: What is Oral Communication: Examples, Importance, Types & Features

10 Characteristics of oral communication with examples 

Oral communication involves a sender (speaker) and a receiver (listener) who engage in a conversation, discussion, or presentation. Here are some primary characteristics of oral language along with examples:

1/ Verbal Expression: The foremost characteristic of oral communication is that it involves the use of spoken words to transmit messages, concepts, and information. Oral information relies on the power of language and pronunciation to deliver a clear and meaningful message. For example, during a team meeting, a project manager verbally explains the new project’s objectives and assigns tasks to each team member.

2/ Rapport Building: Oral communication fosters a personal connection between individuals. People often feel more engaged and connected when interacting orally than through written communication. For example, team members who have regular face-to-face meetings may develop stronger bonds and work better together.

3/ Immediate Feedback: Another key feature of oral communication is the ability to receive immediate feedback from the audience or the receiver. This feedback loop allows for on-the-spot adjustments, enhancing the understanding and effectiveness of the communication process, which is a crucial aspect of the fundamentals of oral communication. For example, a manager delivers a presentation at an annual meeting, and the board of directors can ask questions or seek clarification during the session.

4/ Spontaneity: Oral communication can be spontaneous, allowing for real-time reactions and discussions. For example, during brainstorming sessions, team members can verbally share ideas and build upon each other’s suggestions, leading to creative solutions.

5/ Clarification and Elaboration: In oral communication, participants can seek clarification or ask for further explanations immediately. This helps in resolving doubts and avoiding misunderstandings. For instance, during a conference call, a participant may ask the speaker to elaborate on a complex topic.

6/ Social and Cultural Context: Oral communication is influenced by social norms, cultural customs, and regional accents. People adapt their language and communication style based on the setting and the people they are interacting with. For example, a businessperson may use formal communication and greetings when meeting clients, while using more casual language with colleagues.

7/ Synchronization and Coordination: In collaborative settings, oral communication supports in coordinating tasks and activities. For example, during a team meeting, members can discuss project updates, assign responsibilities, and align their efforts toward a common goal.

8/ Real-Time Interaction: Unlike written communication, oral communication allows for immediate interaction and clarification, promoting a dynamic and engaging conversation. For example, in a group discussion, participants can interact, share ideas, and build upon each other’s points to explore different perspectives.

9/ Personal Touch: Oral communication fosters a sense of personal connection between the speaker and the audience, creating an opportunity for rapport-building and emotional engagement. For example, a motivational speaker uses personal stories to connect with the audience and inspire them.

10/ Non-verbal Cues: Along with words, oral communication relies on different nonverbal cues, such as body language, tone of voice, touch, and hand movements. These cues can convey emotions, emphasis, and sincerity. For instance, during a job interview, the candidate’s body language, like maintaining eye contact and nodding, can show interest and engagement.

Dorie Clark, strategy consultant, and keynote speaker: from LinkedIn Learning, explains how you can recognize non-verbal cues while communicating in the following video. 


These features make oral language a powerful and essential form of human interaction, facilitating effective collaboration, understanding, and relationship-building in various personal and professional contexts. 

Features of oral presentation in business communication

1. Structured Content: In business communication, an oral presentation should feature clear and well-structured content, including a beginning, middle, and end. The presentation must follow a logical flow to ensure ease of understanding for the audience.

2. Visual Aids: Charts, graphs, and images are examples of visual aids that can be employed to improve a presentation’s quality and increase its appeal and retention value.

Related Reading: Why visual communication is important

3. Professional Tone: Oral presentations in business communication should have a professional tone and be delivered in a confident and clear manner. It is essential for the presenter to be thoroughly prepared and possess a good understanding of the subject matter.

4. Audience Engagement: A good oral presentation in business communication should engage the audience by asking questions, inviting feedback, and encouraging interaction. This can assist in maintaining the audience’s engagement and interest in the presentation.

5. Time Management: It is important to manage time effectively during an oral presentation in business communication. The presenter should be mindful of the time allotted for the presentation and make sure to cover all of the key points within the time frame.

Related Readings: 

Methods of oral communication 

There are several methods of oral communication, including


  • Face-to-Face Conversation: Direct communication between two or more people in person. 

Related Reading: Face-to-face conversation advantages and disadvantages

  • Telephonic Conversation: Communication using voice over the telephone.
  • Video Conferencing: Communication through video and audio technology.
  • Presentations: Communication to an audience using visual aids and speaking skills.
  • Interviews: A conversation between an interviewer and interviewee for the purpose of gathering information.
  • Group Discussions: A conversation among multiple people with a common topic or purpose.
  • Lectures: Communication from a speaker to an audience on a specific topic or subject.
  • Speeches: A speaker delivered a formal speech or presentation to an audience. 

Importance of oral communication 

Oral communication is a crucial component of effective communication, as it involves the transmission of information through spoken words, tone, and nonverbal cues. 

One of the benefits of oral communication is that it allows for immediate feedback, which can be helpful in clarifying misunderstandings and ensuring that both parties are on the same page. 

Additionally, oral communication enables individuals to convey emotions, attitudes, and intentions that may not be easily conveyed through written communication. 

Overall, the merits of oral communication outweigh the drawbacks, as it allows for effective collaboration, builds relationships, and enhances overall communication skills.

Characteristics of written communication 

Some key characteristics of written communication include:

1) Permanence: The foremost feature of written communication is that it leaves a permanent record, which can be reviewed or referenced at a later time.

2) Precision: Written communication allows for precise language and careful editing, making it ideal for conveying complex or technical information.

3) Formality: Written communication tends to be more formal than oral communication, with a greater emphasis on structure, grammar, and style.

4) Distance: Written communication can be used to communicate across distance and time, making it ideal for communication between individuals who are not in the same location or time zone.

5) Lack of immediate feedback: Unlike oral communication, written communication does not provide immediate feedback, which can make it challenging to gauge the effectiveness of the message.

Related Reading: The importance of feedback in communication

Frequently Asked Questions 

Q1) What are the 4 characteristics of oral communication?

Ans: The four characteristics of oral communication are immediacy, interactivity, personalization, and flexibility.

Q2) What are the 5 characteristics of oral language?

Ans: According to Donald J. Richgels, the five characteristics of oral language are phonology, morphology, syntax, semantics, and pragmatics. Source 

Q3) What are the 7 characteristics of communication?

Ans: Communication involves a two-way exchange of messages between a sender and receiver. The sender encodes the message through various channels, while the receiver decodes it to understand the meaning. Feedback helps assess the effectiveness of communication within a specific context, but noise can disrupt the process. Being mindful of these seven characteristics ensures clearer understanding and improved connections in interactions.

Q4) What are the feature and characteristics of verbal communication?

Ans: Verbal communication involves using spoken words to convey information and emotions. The characteristics of verbal communication include immediate feedback, adaptability, relationship building, spontaneity, and memorability. These features benefit verbal communication by fostering understanding, trust, and efficient problem-solving in various contexts.

Q5) What are the major characteristics of oral presentation?

Ans: Major characteristics of oral presentations require clarity, engagement, organization, visual aids, and compelling delivery. Speakers must articulate ideas clearly, keep the audience engaged, and use visual support to enhance understanding. A well-structured presentation with confident delivery helps leave a lasting impact on the audience.

Q6) What are the characteristics of good oral language? 

Ans: Good oral language is characterized by clarity, active listening, confidence, adaptability to diverse audiences, appropriate non-verbal cues, and cultural sensitivity. These traits enable effective communication, fostering meaningful connections in various contexts.

Aditya Soni

Aditya is the head of content at clearinfo and is responsible for improving the site's organic visibility. He is a certified SEO trainer and has worked with SaaS companies and startups to enhance their digital marketing presence. He is also an ahref fanboy. Click to connect with him on Twitter, and LinkedIn.  

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