BARRIER OF COMMUNICATION-: Communication is a process involving transmitting and receiving information.

If the message sent by the sender is received in the same way as it was intended, the process of communication is called successful. But sometimes this does not happen due to some barriers in the process of communication. Barriers affect adversely the effectiveness of communication. In this chapter we will discuss some such barriers, for the awareness of the problems in itself is half the solution.


Wrong Choice of Medium-: There are various media of communication available- oral, written, visual, audio-visual etc. The medium of communication should be selected according to the kind of situation. A wrong choice may leads to many disturbances. For examples, if an employee wants to discuss something important with his superiors, a telephonic conversation or written letter may not of as much help as the face-to-face dialogue. Physical Barriers-: a) Noise- Noise is a big barrier in communication. In factories oral communication is difficult due to excessive noise of the machines. There should be sound proof and separate places in factories or mills for discussing important affairs. b) Defects in the medium- A defective telephone connection or a poor mobile network, a slow

Proper measures should be taken to minimize this barrier. it will take longer for the message to get through. They will need to revisit the message on a few occasions and in different ways before it takes hold in their mind. But we may not have them everywhere. If everything is fast and furious in an organization. Sometimes a wrong seating arrangement also affects communication. Due to different schedules of employees in a particular organization a barrier might be created. However modern system of communication has overcome the problem of distance to a great extent. Time and Distance. tight timeliness diminish the change for interaction and collaboration. In addition.Distance can be a barrier in communication at times.c) internet connection can create a lot of disturbance in the process of communication. Accept that technology can hinder as well as help your message. they must allow . An organization’s view on ‘time allowed’ and ‘time available’ is often part of its unique culture. Use technology selectively and with clear thought before you send your message out across the organization. Why? Because a fast pace and tight timeliness diminish the opportunity for people to concentrate on one things at a time. Time can also be a barrier sometimes. If employees want people to embrace their message.

There are many such words which like charge. write. such words should be carefully used. infected etc. Murphy and Peck have described a barrier of ‘by-passed instructions’ arising because of same words meaning different meanings*. suit.1. The process of encoding a message should be strictly according to the receiver’s language and point of view. time in which they can connect and share their thoughts and feelings with others… and with you. Sometimes the barrier can be because of use of the words which have many meanings. check. screw. Perhaps you need to delay the sharing of your message if you want people to spend the best amount of time on it. An incorrect language is a very big barrier in the process of communication. It is not always necessary that the receiver is at the same wavelength as you. Too much use of ‘jargons’ or technical terms may lead to a failure in exact communication. Semantic and Language Barriers-: Semantic means pertaining to the meaning of words. It can also arise because of mispronunciations of the words. In oral communication the barriers can arise because of words which have the same pronunciations but have different meanings. Wrong use of language . burn. paste. Such barriers may arise because of many reasons.

In the office language the word burn was used to make a copy on a machine company operated by heat process. Such things must be kept in minds while conveying a message. 2. burned the letter the only existing copy. Because of culture or environment many words may generate different responses in people. the use of many idiomatic and bombastic expressions may also lead to the failure of communication. Sometimes. the puzzled new employee. The drafting of a letter should be from proper hands. Acceptance of English as international language has solved this problem to a great extent. Organizational Barriers-: a) Complexity in organizational structure: Organizations having many levels of hierarchy may have a slow flow of communication among various .* indicate thatThe example Murphy and Peck give is: An office manager gave a letter to a newly appointed assistant and said ‘take it to our stock room and burn it’. afraid to ask questions. Note.can lead to much confusion. Barrier of language can also be because of different language spoken in different places. The letter was extremely important. There may be a biased attitude of some people towards particular words or ideas. However.

generate a healthy work atmosphere and more productive results. Measures should be taken to keep the relations healthy. climate and interpersonal Relationships: Trust. c) Over Rigidity of Rules and Regulation: Too rigid rules of an organization may lead to a slow flow of information among various members of an organization. healthy relationship. members having different authority levels in an organization. friendly atmosphere. Barrier Relating to Superior-Subordinate Relationship: The subordinate must follow the orders . Open door employment system. The system of flow of communication should not be very complicated.1. b) Organizational culture. Freedom. Confusions. quarrels. conferences. A regular get-together of all the members is very essential. ego-problems may create a communication gap in an organization. seminars and meetings being held in the organization also influence the flow of communication. d) Superior subordinate relationships: The flow of information can arise because of poor superiorsubordinate relationships in organizations. e) Inadequate Facilities and opportunities: An organization may not have adequate means and media of communication or equipments. which may lead to dangerous results. misunderstandings.

carry out his duties efficiently and provide full information regularly to the superiors. and thereby distort the process of communication. may make the superior hesitate to speak freely even regarding an important matter. Similarly the superior should spend enough time with subordinates listening to their feedbacks and problems. If the information is bypassed leaving intermediary channels. This may lead to prejudices in the minds of subordinates. He may use a bossy tone to ensure his control even where it is not desired. b) Lack of trust distorts the relations and therefore the flow of communication between superiors and subordinates. Barriers emanating from superiors: a) Shortage of time for employees.from higher authorities. 1. c) Lack of consideration for employee’s needs may adversely affect the relations between and employee. an information may not reach . d) Fear of losing power and control over employees. These are barriers emanating from superiors as well as subordinates. But there can be some barriers in the process of superior-subordinate communication. e) Bypassing also acts as a barrier. arising from lack of trust in people.

essential for organization. that may create a gap in the process of communication. 1. Inn their relationship the superior has a bigger role to play. but the subordinate should make efforts to keep the relationship between them healthy. f) Overload of information is also a problem. d) Poor relationship between superior and subordinates. c) Lack of cooperation and mutual understanding may lead to hiding of some important information. Extra detailed information may lead to lack of focus on important issues. Psychological Barrier: . b) If a subordinate is indifferent to communicate with superiors. which leads to a big communication problem.subordinates must develop a healthy relationship with superiors. e) Hesitation on the part of subordinates is a major barrier in the process of effective flow of information. which may make it difficult for subordinates to communicate freely with superiors. effectively to all the members. Barriers emanating from subordinates: a) There may be complexity in the structure of an organization.1. This may lead to confusions.

If the speaker is highly trusted as an honest person. . He may not take that part of information which does not match with his expectations. a) Selective Perception: The receiver may have a world of his own around himself. People with such mindsets always misunderstand a message and colour the objective reality of it in their own subjective way. This sometimes acts as a barrier in communication. Having poor concepts of himself and the people may act as a big barrier in the process of communication. People with negative attitude of life and world around them generally make many mistakes in understanding other’s thoughts. since the impression of the speaker and not the worth of the message is the determining factor. his statements are readily taken as true.Psychological barriers are the prime barriers in interpersonal communication. He projects his expectations and apprehensions in decoding the messages. Oral communication is greatly conditioned by the impressions about the speaker on the listener. There can be many psychological barriers in communication. b) Halo Effect: The awe in which a speaker is held by the listener conditions the process of communication (Especially the oral communication).

They generally have a high opinion about their smartness. These complexes can be because of various reasons. Closed and all knowing mind: Listening is an important part of in life. This affects communication to a great extent. man’s goodness. Generally . It can have many other causes as well. Such people always disregard everyone around them. People with inferiority complex fail to take initiative or involve themselves in conversation or any kind of communication. Norman Vincent Peale says that the chief cause of inferiority complex is ‘lack of faith’. most of which are to be found in childhood experiences of a person. which requires a curious mind.c) d) Complexes: A sense of superiority or inferiority may prevent proper oral interaction between the persons. etc. People with know all or closed mind refuse to receive new ideas. Lack of confidence in oneself causes this problem. Complex of inferiority is just the opposite of superiority complex. oneself. which irritate people and hinder the process of communication.always eager to know new things irrespective of the source. Complex of superiority basically arises from frogin-the well attitude. and that everyone around them is a fool or knows less than them. Those who know very little tend to think they know more than others.

What’s more. Abstracting: Abstracting is a mental process of evaluation of thought content in terms of relative important of ideas in the context of the total message. Self-centered attitudes: We. which demands willingness to enter into a new dialogue. sometimes. We pay attention to that which is useful to us and leave the rest. People with such attitude fail to see how people think and feel. which hinders communication to a great extent. The rest of the communication is missed. Abstracting is partial and selective listening. Cognitive Dissonance: At times the listener fails to accept or respond to new information or ideas. People having self centred attitudes normally fail to develop good relationship with people around them. as he is not ready to change from the old set of beliefs.e) f) g) in business or other work areas there are people who feel too content with their ways that they don’t even like to discuss new ideas. tend to see or hear things of our own interests. This attitude may prevent us from seeing things from other’s point of views. The closed mind is a big barrier in communication. Abstracting acts as a barrier when a listener approaches a message from a particular viewpoint focusing on some aspects at the cost of other things in the message. As a result a dissonance between what is said and . they discourage people who are innovative.

what is heard is created. experiences and thinking ability. Misunderstanding and different problems may arise. b) Circumstantial Physical Factors: Sometimes physical factors like small room size. This can act as a barrier sometimes.1. OVERCOMING THE BARRIERS IN COMMUNICATION: . cause hindrance in communication. disorderly seating arrangement. poor voice qualities. c) Filtering: This refers to filtering of message in the receiver’s minds because of his attitude. poor lighting. Words colour and symbols have different meaning in different societies. They are: a) Cultural Differences: It affects communication between people from different social environment. beliefs. as the sender’s message passes through the mental filters in the mind of receiver plus others such as low interest in the message or distraction and fatigue causing loss of concentration. and faulty equipments used etc. Cognitive Dissonance interferes with the acceptance of a new idea the way it happens to be. Other Barriers: There are other barriers besides the ones we discussed above.

Accuracy in the message should be maintained. Superior should forget about his ego and should be friendly to the subordinates. Coordination between superior and subordinates is an important factors in an organization. The accent should be correct. Complexes should be worked on and removed from the mind. Language should be correct and clear. 6. The words must be pronounced clearly.g. The medium of communication should be cleverly chosen. a little information about the . A mutual interpersonal trust among members and between superior and subordinates reduces communication gap and creates a more productive environment. Similarly the subordinate should not give the boss any chance to show his bossism. 2. The message should be clearly encoded in the language. telephone should be preferred to a face-toface talk when talking about an important issue.The aforementioned barriers can be overcome in following ways: 1. The medium should be according to the content and kind of the message to be conveyed. The message should not be unduly long. 4. 5. Use of over difficult language and unnecessary use of jargons should be avoided. 7. 3. E.

Flexibility improves the flow of communication between different levels. For removing barriers arising because of organizational structures. Extra tall hierarchical structures should be avoided. Proper channels of communication should be there in an organization. a simple and flexible organizational structure should be followed. ______________________________________________ PRINCIPLES OF EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION: There are 7c’s in communication. as they may give rise to status problembecause of big differences in status level.psychological truths can help in improving the personality. 8. and the communication becomes better. they are as follows• Clarity • Completeness • Conciseness • Consideration • Courtesy . The rules and regulation should not be unduly rigid.

• Correctness • Coherence ______________________________________________ .

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