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MB0039 - Q1. Briefly describe any situation in your own experience where the communication failed because the non-verbal behavior sent a negative message. Which aspect of non-verbal communication contributed to the failure? How would you correct this?

Ans. Situation where Communication was a failure to me: As an Associate Manager, I was a sender for a communication and intended to be received by my executives. I have sent the following communication to my executives through a notice and displayed on the notice board: “Coming Second Saturday to complete our targets for the month a review meeting is arranged and all should attend. If any executive is not able to attend
should find out the contents of the meeting from their peers without fail”. But my communication went wrong and out of 10 executives, only three executives have attended at 4.00 PM who checked-in with me the time of the meeting. Following were the barriers of communication which stood in the way of my communication: The “Channel” I have chosen communication by “Receivers” did not ensure the receipt of the
The communication lacked the “Chronological context” The second Saturday being a non working day. The communication has created a “Psychological noise” by not mentioning correct time of the meeting and confusion has been created. The “social context” also is one of the cause for the failure of the communication as I have not taken all my executives into confident by giving any advance information or a intention of the meeting earlier.
Lessons learnt in order to overcome these barriers of communication: My communication was unclear by not giving exact time of meeting. The media I have used is the placing the notice on the notice board, instead had I circulated to all the receivers and obtained their signatures by asking their availability or feedback my communication would not have failed. I have chosen a wrong day a holiday though the task was a routine one.
I could have maintained good relations with my executives for success of my communication.
Overcome the communication barriers
When you send a message, you intend to communicate meaning, but the message itself doesn’t contain meaning. The meaning exists in your mind and in the mind of your receiver. To understand one another, you and your receiver must share similar meanings for words, gestures, tone of voice, and other symbols.
1. Differences in perception
The world constantly bombards us with information: sights, sounds, scents, and so on. Our minds organize this stream of sensation into a mental map that represents our perception or reality. In no case is the perception of a certain person the same as the world itself, and no two maps are identical. As you view the world, your mind absorbs your experiences in a unique and personal way. Because your perceptions are unique, the ideas you want to express differ from other people’s Even when two people have experienced the same event, their mental images of that event will not be identical. As senders, we choose the details that seem important and focus our attention on the most relevant and general, a process known as selective perception. As receivers, we try to fit new details into our existing pattern. If a detail doesn’t quite fit, we are inclined to distort the information rather than rearrange the pattern.
2. Incorrect filtering
Filtering is screening out before a message is passed on to someone else. In business, the filters between you and your receiver are many; secretaries, assistants, receptionists, answering machines, etc. Those same gatekeepers may also ‘translate’ your receiver’s ideas and responses before passing them on to you. To overcome filtering barriers, try to establish more than one communication channel, eliminate as many intermediaries as possible, and decrease distortion by condensing message information to the bare essentials.
3. Language problems
When you choose the words for your message, you signal that you are a member of a particular culture or subculture and that you know the code. The nature of your code imposes its own barriers on your message. Barriers also exist because words can be interpreted in more than one way. Language is an arbitrary code that depends on shared definitions, but there’s a limit to how completely any of us share the same meaning for a given word. To overcome language barriers, use the most specific and accurate words possible. Always try to use words your audience will understand. Increase the accuracy of your messages by using language that describes rather than evaluates and by presenting observable facts, events, and circumstances.
4. Poor listening
Perhaps the most common barrier to reception is simply a lack of attention on the receiver’s part. We all let our minds wander now and then, regardless of how hard we try to concentrate. People are essentially likely to drift off when they are forced to listen to information that is difficult to understand or that has little direct bearing on their own lives. Too few of us simply do not listen well! To overcome barriers, paraphrase what you have understood, try to view the situation through the eyes of other speakers and resist jumping to conclusions. Clarify meaning by asking non-threatening questions, and listen without interrupting.
5. Differing emotional states
Every message contains both a content meaning, which deals with the subject of the message, and a relationship meaning, which suggests the nature of the interaction between sender and receiver. Communication can break down when the receiver reacts negatively to either of these meanings. You may have to deal with people when they are upset or when you are. An upset person tends to ignore or distort what the other person is saying and is often unable to present feelings and ideas effectively. This is not to say that you should avoid all communication when you are emotionally involved, but you should be alert to the greater potential for misunderstanding that accompanies aroused emotions. To overcome emotional barriers, be aware of the feelings that arise in your self and in others as you communicate, and attempt to control them. Most important, be alert to the greater potential for misunderstanding that accompanies emotional messages.
6. Differing backgrounds
Differences in background can be one of the hardest communication barriers to overcome. Age, education, gender, social status, economic position, cultural background, temperament, health, beauty, popularity, religion, political belief, even a passing mood can all separate one person from another and make understanding difficult. To overcome the barriers associated with differing backgrounds, avoid projecting your own background or culture onto others. Clarify your own and understand the background of others, spheres of knowledge, personalities and perceptions and don’t assume that certain behaviors mean the same thing to everyone.


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