Effective Communication Principles

Covering general communication, interpersonal and written.

General Communication

General communication

When working in a business environment, it is always important to consider general communication. It is a way of expressing ideas, or thoughts between yourself and others, in in a working place this is absolutely crucial in securing good relations with your colleagues and boss. In order to have effective communication, however, there needs to be the person who is passing on the message, the means of how the message is sent and of course the actual recipient. These are the three most important things needed when exhibiting general communication. It depends on how well you communicate information which could be the crucial decider whether or not your communication could be considered effective. Developing your communication skills is not only helpful for a working environment, but it also can apply to other life situations and can also generally improve your communication skills in regards to things as simple as chatting with your family, or discussing topics with peers. It's never a bad thing to start working on your communication skills, and I'm going to be breaking it down for you.

Interpersonal communication

Interpersonal communication is the process in which people exchange information, through verbal or non-verbal messages, it is face-to-face communication. It isn't just about the actual message, or what language the message is spoken in but how it is said. For example, when conveying the message, it is important to consider your facial expressions. Facial expressions can tell a lot about somebody without actually understanding what they are saying; no matter where the person may be from or what barriers might exist between yourself and the speaker, if they have an angry expression on their face then you will generally understand the mood that the person is in and how their message will be conveyed.

There are other ways that people must understand interpersonal communication. For example, consider the tone of voice when speaking to somebody. A lot can be said from how we say the message and the way we say it, perhaps even more can be pulled from non-verbal communication than actual verbal communication at times. It is a very telling way of letting somebody know exactly how you feel, and a useful way to express yourself. It is always absolutely vital to consider your impersonal communication skills when communicating with somebody, especially in a working environment.

Written Skills

Another very important communication skill to consider is written skills. Whether or not you realise it, how you structure your sentences or paragraphs can say a lot about the message you are sending, for example in an e-mail scenario. You must always consider the audience when structuring an e-mail and consider whether or not it is appropriate to use formal or informal language when communicating. If it is a message to somebody who is an higher above or perhaps somebody related to a business, working environment then it is always important to use formal language and refrain from dropping in slang words and other informal writing to communicate effectively, and professionally with the person in question.

As well as this, you must always make sure that your grammar and spelling is accurate. Having incorrect spellings, or poor grammar can actually draw people away from you. In a scenario where you are, say, trying to send out application forms as part of your task, it's vital to remember to always check the spelling, and make sure there are no errors in punctuation, grammar or capitalisation. Otherwise, if you leave the application forms with errors such as this it could completely deter potential employers away, and they will see it as very unprofessional. That is why it is always extremely important to consider your written skills in general communication with others.

Potential barriers

When communicating with others, there are always many potential barriers that could limit how effectively you convey your message. I am going to be covering the topics I just covered, and give some examples of barriers that could hinder how effectively your message is communicated.

General Communication potential barriers

When using general communication skills, there are many potential barriers that could hinder how effectively you get across your message. For example, cultural differences can be a deciding factor when attempting to interact with others from different countries or brought up in different cultures to your own. This could be because the person may speak a different language to yourself and therefore words in your language could mean something entirely different in theirs. Or, perhaps there are behavioural miscommunication problems that may occur due to cultures having significantly different opinions on what warrants as respectful. For example, in some Asian countries, eye contact can be considered a negative and disrespectful behaviour which could cause problems if you was to visit an Asian country and try and communicate with your traditional behaviour.

Another possible barrier that may emerge is communicating with different audiences. It is always important to remember that some people, such as friendlier co-workers that you might consider friends or acquaintances might warrant treatment as equals, and you may find yourself talking informally to them which can be acceptable in certain situations. However, if you find yourself chatting the same way to the company's executive then it could potentially spell out problems. This is why it is always important to consider whom you are talking to, and to adapt your message properly so that it fits the person's values and doesn't offend them.

Impersonal communication potential barriers

There are many impersonal communication barriers that can come into play when communicating with an individual. One impact that could potentially present a barrier when communicating is body language. It's always paramount to consider body language as it can have a very significant effect on your audience when discussing something with somebody. Sometimes, you might be doing everything right in regards to body language and it's the recipient who is doing everything wrong. For example, not making eye contact with the person, staring off into space, looking out of the window or closing your eyes while somebody is talking to you is a massive barrier in communication. This can be seen as a lack of interest, boredom and various other negative opinions associated with this kind of behaviour.

Another barrier that can sometimes limit maximum effectiveness when communicating is use of inappropriate language. Using foul language, or swearing constantly makes an employee look as though they are typically disrespectful and blindly rude in every situation. It can also rear its ugly head when abuse is used as well, such as racism, insults and various other forms of verbal abuse. This often makes the recipients feel rejected, upset, embarrassed and downright hurtful. This is a possible barrier and it is absolutely essential to avoid creating this barrier as it can massively hinder communication between the speaker and their audience.

Written skills potential barriers

When using written skills, there are of course many different potential barriers that could arise and stop maximised effectiveness of written communication. One particular example is poor spelling. If you are sending a letter to another company, for example, and leave it with a multitude of spelling errors, you are representing the company and the company will be represented as one that is rampant with errors and uncleanliness. This will therefore give off the opinion that the company isn't bothered about checking and cleaning up their spelling mistakes, and not bothered about leaving them in. This gives an overall extremely unprofessional image of the company you are representing and therefore gives yourself a unprofessional reputation as somebody who isn't bothered enough to correct spelling mistakes, something that thanks to the modern technology of the spell checker and the vastness of the internet, can be easily and quickly corrected. In future, especially when sending something important, make sure that you always double-check your spelling and make sure that there are absolutely no evidence of spelling mistakes.

Another barrier that can sometimes appear when communicating with written communication is irrelevant content. A good example of this would be a scenario where you are due to present an important presentation to executives, or some workers who are high up within the company. If you include irrelevant content during your presentation, say including personal or general information about yourself when presenting a slideshow about IT sales can often deter people away from the main point of your presentation and make the audience generally confused about what exactly sort of point you are trying to make with your presentation. When creating content that is going to people, make sure you reduce any useless information to limit the possibilities of misunderstandings when presenting your work.