As a recent graduate of a communication masters program and someone who has worked in the field, I cannot tell you how many times I have heard some variation of, “Oh you’re majoring in communication, that must mean you are good at talking.” That’s probably my favorite quote, or right up there with it is, “Communication…isn’t that considered an easy study, what are you going do with that?”
Personally, I think a lot of people have a hard time understanding communication because there are so many subfields of communication. It is not like going to school for nursing-one knows he or she going to be a nurse. With communication there are many different areas you can work in- just to name a few: print marketing, website development, crisis management and planning, social media marketing, photography, video production, workplace training…the list goes on and on.
Yes, all these areas are self-standing, but the biggest factor that brings communication together is a purpose and goals. All the areas that I mentioned wouldn’t have a meaning without a company having an idea or goal they want to achieve. How does communication help us do that? By using those areas of study as tactics. There is always going to be a new app, trend, event, or crisis that takes place. When this does, who do they want to analyze it or figure it out the problem… the person who works in communication!
So the next time someone asks what you do in communication, simply say, “How much time do you have to talk about it?”