This post was most recently updated on December 24th, 2018
Communication barriers in the workplace can lead to a loss of thousands of dollars not only to the company, but can also lead to someone losing their job(s).
Communication skills play an essential role for every employee in an organization. Although every employee goes through a strict scrutiny before being selected for the job, it becomes very difficult for them to communicate with their colleagues. The core of this problem in a workplace is communication barriers.
If these communication barriers are not tackled with and solved in the first place, it is probable that this issue might persist. It will eventually make the real time collaboration weak among the employees.
Communication barriers are more likely to increase if they are not eradicated for good. In order to improve the efficiency and productivity of employees, you need to come with a solution to overcome these communication barriers.
The core problem of most communication barriers is misinterpretations along with misunderstandings. Stressful work environments play a huge part in these misunderstandings.
Obviously, every employee has a different personality, and sometimes it might get very difficult to adjust with someone who has a completely opposite thinking. Leading to a lack of understanding between the individuals.
Importance of Communication
Communication is one of the most important tools required to achieve productivity and to maintain a strong relationship at all levels of organization.
Employers who believe in spending their precious time and energy to delivering clear and elaborated communication lines tend to build a strong bond of trust among their employees. This character trait leads to an increase in the output, productivity and morale generally.
Lack of communication in an organization will lead to an inevitable unmotivated staff, who may start questioning their own abilities and skills, leading to a decrease in their levels of confidence.
Why is communication important?
The process of communication involves sending and receiving information among people. Generally, human beings not only communicate among each other face to face, but also by other means such as transferring information through the internet and printed products like the newspaper and magazines.
It is believed by many that communication is as signification to the human life as breathing. Moreover, it forms a bond of knowledge and facilitates a strong relationship between people.
Firstly, communication helps in spreading information and knowledge between the people. For instance, an author writes books to spread knowledge to the world, and teachers teach their students by sharing their past experiences with them. Just like that, friends or colleagues discuss their ideas with each other to spread the same knowledge among their coworkers, subsiding companies and customers.
Nevertheless, the internet not only helps people in communicating, it also allows us to access knowledge and information related to all the fields. It also makes it much easier and faster to stay in touch with our loved ones and people throughout the world. Unfortunately, this process of sharing knowledge and information cannot function without communication. Therefore, when there are communication barriers, the companies do not operate systematically, drowning humanity in the abyss of ignorance.
However, communication definitely sets up a foundation for all human relations. For instance, take an example of two strangers who start talking to each other, in fact, start getting to know more about each other. When they start interacting more than the usual, a strong relationship is formed between the two of them.
Communicating helps them in sharing their ideas, thoughts, and feelings, which helps them in understanding the thoughts and emotions of each other. Resulting in the development of hatred or affection towards people, creating either a positive or a negative relationship.
There is no doubt that communication plays a very essential role when it comes to human life. It is not only a medium of sharing information and knowledge, But it also helps in the development of relationships among people. Therefore it should not be underestimated, for it is a very important aspect of life.
We communicate with a lot of people during our daily lives, including our friends, families and colleagues, and even strangers. Learning how to communicate effectively will help us in improving our lives and making it better.
Communication Barriers Examples
Following communication barriers are the most prevalent in today’s time, and several methods have also been adopted in order to eliminate them.
1. Lacking Confidence
One of the major problems faced in a lot of workplaces is lacking confidence. This problem occurs at every level, and it is a great communication barrier. It has many forms that it can be present in, such as awkwardness, shyness, anxiousness and so on.
It suppresses the employees of an organization, affecting the overall collaboration of the company negatively.
2. Stereotypical Generalization
Accurate perception is deeply affected by the very typical generalization. Comparing people with the stereotypes might prevent you from getting a clear picture of their ideas, which can be worth a lot.
Make sure that you do not judge them on the basis of their general appearance for it might not be close to what you assume, or it could also be non-existent.
Clarity can be very difficult to overcome at times when it comes to communication barriers, because every person is different in their own way. However, the one speaking must be sure of the fact that the messages he is delivering are clear and free of ambiguities.
4. Body Language
Sometimes what you say does not match your body language at all, which can have a very negative impact on the message you are trying to convey. Body language gestures can be a tremendous barrier, lacking clarity if not utilized properly.
5. Irregular Conversations
Regular communication is a must, and one must try to open up on a daily basis. If your conversations are not regular, you will lack confidence while addressing people whenever they would require any help regarding work. Overcoming this barrier is simple, it can be done by daily meetings and lunches together.
6. Not Listening Properly
Do not jump off to conclusions without listening to what the other person has to say because nothing would workout eventually. People have a habit of jumping to conclusions without knowing the background of the story, which develops communication barriers.
This is proven to be one of the biggest communication barriers, because once people are aware that you are not loyal, they will never share their ideas and work plans with you.
A list of 17 additional examples of communication barriers
- Cultural gaps between employees of different regions and countries
- Language barriers, difference in dialects, unfamiliar accents or slight nuances
- False assumptions
- Approaching every situation with a negative lens
- Medium of communication like text, telephone and other technology cannot be a replacement of face-to-face meetings
- Lack of the ability to communication a difference in opinion
- A difference of opinion itself may also become a barrier of communication
- Lack of attention from the one you are trying to communicate
- Distractions when trying to communication in the form of a mobile phone, noise, etc.
- If one employee looks down upon another employee
- Racist sentiments
- Egoistic behaviour
- When someone has already made up their mind
- Use of unnecessary jargon
- Cultural taboos
- Insecurity of any kind
- Emotional vs rational behaviour