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Communication Barriers
Obstructions / hindrances that disturb
smooth flow of a message from the
sender to the receiver may be termed as
communication barriers. Such barriers
may lead to distortion of communication.

Types of Communication barriers :

i. Sender related barriers

ii. Receiver related barriers
iii. Barriers related to both the sender and

the receiver
iv. Situation related barriers.

A) Sender related barriers:
1. Lack of communication goals: Lack of communication
goal can lead to formulation of incoherent message.
2. Absence of communication skills: Lack of such skill on
the part of the sender will make it difficult for the receiver to
understand the message clearly.
3. Wrong choice of media: The message may not even
reach the receiver if the right media is not used.
4. Abstracting: If the abstract is not fairly representative of
the whole situation, the message will fail to achieve its
desired results.
5. Slanting: Slanting occurs if unfavorable aspects are
emphasized when describing a situation.

6. Absence of interpersonal sensitivity: Insensitive individuals
often use a language which is offensive to the receiver.

7. Inconsistent behavior: Unnecessary shouting or laughing by

the sender, for example, may hinder proper communication.

8. Different frames of references: Lack of shared experiences

may result in miscommunication.

9. Either-or thanking: Use of either/or thinking creates

inflexibility and hinders communication.

10. Lack of sender credibility: Absence of faith in the message

may result out of incredibility of the sender.

11. Fear: Fear on the part of the sender will hinder proper

B) Receiver related barriers:

1. Negativeattitudes and opinions: If the message does not agree with the attitudes
and opinions of the receiver, it will act as a barrier to proper

2. Wrong inferences: If the conclusion based on facts are wrong they will
create barriers to proper communication.

3. Closed mind: People with deep-rooted prejudices are supposed to form

a closed mind and prove difficult to communicate with.

4. Suspicion about the source of communication: If the receiver is

suspicious about the source of communication s/he is not going to receive
the message properly.

5. Inattentiveness: Inattentiveness on the part of the receiver is supposed to create

distractions, thereby making the communication effort unsuccessful.

6. Poor retention: If the listener is very poor in his
power of retention then the message may fail to
produce the desired results.

7. Meta communication: An additional idea

accompanying every idea that is expressed may
also create barriers.

8. Non-evaluation of the message due to distrust

of the receiver.

9. Selective and poor listening.

10. Lack of responsive feed-back.

C) Barriers related to both the sender and the receiver:

1. Status consciousness
2. Emotions
3. Wrong interpretation of words

D) Situation related barriers:

1. Noise
2. Communication climate of distrust and suspicion
3. Distance between the sender and the receiver
4. Mechanical failure
5. Time pressure
6. Information overload
7. Jargon

Overcoming the Barriers to Effective Communication

A. Senders responsibility to overcome barriers

1. Setting clear communication goal

2. Practicing empathic communication
3. Avoiding Jargon
4. Encouraging feedback
5. Improving communicators credibility
6. Using face-to-face communication
7. Repeating important message
8. Developing a climate of trust
9. Using picture

B. Receivers responsibility to overcome barriers

1. Avoiding premature judgment

2. Providing responsive feedback
3. Effective listening