Difference Between Verbal and Non-Verbal Communication

Verbal communication uses sounds, words, and languages to get your message across, while nonverbal communication uses non-vocal tools like eye movement, body language, and tone.

Communication is the process of passing or exchanging ideas, emotions, information, and thoughts between two or more people. When a meaningful interaction happens among people, then effective communication takes place.

In simple words, the way people perceive and understand the meaning of words or sentences or physical actions, and then a process of communication happens. Communication is very essential at all levels in human life without which one can’t survive in this social environment encompassing personal as well as professional.

The main purpose of communication is to correctly pass the information to the receiver, thus creating clarity of thoughts and removing misunderstanding, else the whole idea of the communication could be defeated. But communication has discrete forms or types, the main are Verbal and Non Verbal Communication that is not clear to many.

Verbal vs Non-Verbal Communication

The difference between Verbal and Non-Verbal Communication is that in Verbal communication, thoughts or emotions or information is exchanged between individuals through the use of speech. Non-verbal communication refers to signals transmitted through facial expressions, posture, eye contact, gestures, tone of voice, body language, and other ways.

Verbal vs Non Verbal Communication

Any interaction where a person uses the words to converse then it’s recognized as verbal communication. Nonverbal communication is also considered as an indirect method through which people communicate with others without using words or language.


Comparison Table

Parameter of ComparisonVerbal CommunicationNon Verbal Communication
DefinitionVerbal communication involves the use of words or speech or auditory language to express emotions or thoughts or exchange information.Non-verbal communication involves the use of visual or non-verbal cues such as facial expressions, eye or body movements, gestures, and many more without speaking.
Communication TypeFormal as well as InformalInformal
Impact of the MessageVery impactful as it is documented.Very comprehensive as it shows the actual emotions of the person.
CommunicatesPrecise information.Required and at times more information.
Conveyed ThroughEmails, letters, notes, reports, i.e. Anything in written and oral format where words are used.Through Body posture, gestures, eye contacts, face expressions i.e. any form of expression.
Transparency StatusClear and Concise.Complex and sometimes confusing.


What is Verbal Communication?

In Verbal communication, a person uses words or speech to exchange information or messages. It takes place in the form of oral as well as a written format between two or more persons.

Examples of verbal communication are meetings, letters, reports, emails, notes, memos, group discussions, interviews, counseling, face-to-face conversations, telephone calls, radio, etc.

Verbal communication plays an integral role in maintaining successful and positive relationships.

Doing effective and constructive communication always results in contented people, increased productivity, smoother operations, and decreased errors. Effective Verbal communication is needed to foster a positive relationship among people, irrespective of whether it is done at a professional or at a personal front.

We work and live with people who are from different geographies and diverse backgrounds of culture & language, thus it becomes very essential for all to work hard on their verbal communication skills to pass the correct information to the right person at the right time.

Superior verbal communication skills also increase the abilities of individuals to appropriately share thoughts, concerns, and ideas without hurting anyone.

Verbal communication is considered as the fastest mechanism of expressions. Verbal communication can also be done formally and informally, where formal verbal communication is done in a structured format using defined rules & guidelines, whereas informal communication does not precisely follow the structured format of rules & guidelines.

Verbal Communication

What is Non-Verbal Communication?

Non-verbal communication is the widely used method in the communication process where a person doesn’t use a single word or language to pass his/her message or information to other people. When a person doesn’t use the words to converse with others rather uses visual cues such as facial expressions, gestures, eye contact, posture, body language, tone of voice to express their feelings or convey the message, then it is called a Non-verbal communication.

When a person attending any meeting, appears for an interview, gets into the group discussion or in any activity, then how people carrying themselves through physical means explains their non-verbal responses. For example, poor posture in the interview represents unprofessional and casual behavior, avoiding eye contact or downward gaze reflects that a person is not confident enough, the person standing or sitting with crossed arms means he might be defensive, etc.

Non-verbal communication skills can’t be learned, they are peculiar to individuals as they reflect the personal attitude of the person towards life and other people.

This particular skill can make or break the relationships of the person at personal as well as at the professional front. It is not a structured method that is guided by specific rules & regulations rather non-verbal communication is a reflection of the person who is involved in the communication process.

One has to understand how their expressions can impact the other person and thus need to be very careful.

Non-verbal communication works very well with verbal communication at times. It’s sometimes difficult to assess whether the recipient has understood the meaning or correct message is passed to the recipient or not.

Artifacts, Chronemics, Haptics, Vocalists, Proxemics, and Kinesics are forms of non-verbal communication.

Non-Verbal Communication

Main Differences Between Verbal and Non-Verbal Communication

Communication is very crucial for humans as it acts as a basic building block or tool to support survival. Different people communicate differently either verbally or non-verbally.

But it’s necessary to recognize the difference between Verbal and Non-verbal communication so that one never misses the message or important signs.

  1. Verbal communication involves the proper usage of words and language, whereas in Non-verbal communication no words or language are used to communicate rather expressions convey the message.
  2. In Verbal communication, the physical presence of the sender and receiver is not necessary, whereas in Non-verbal communication physical presence of the person is essential.
  3. In Verbal communication, the message is easily conveyed and understood by the recipient, whereas in Non-verbal communication recipient can easily miss either some part or the whole message.
Difference Between Verbal and Non Verbal Communication
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