Have you ever left a conversation with someone wondering what on earth they were talking about? Communication methods can become weak or faulty if communication barriers exist. Your ability to overcome these barriers can determine the success or failure of your intended message. When evaluating your system of communication, consider the barriers that may hinder you. Rather than succumbing to these barriers, develop ways to overcome them. The following communication barriers are common, and can be overcome by learning the right skills.
Noise and distractions
- This includes anything in your surrounding environment that could inhibit you from getting your message across in a clear and concise manner. These are harmful to effective communication because they can inhibit your audiences’ ability to grasp the concept that you wish to communicate.
- In order to overcome noise and distractions that may hinder you, organize your ideas and focus your presentation. Having visual aids, props, or examples to portray your ideas can help reduce noise and distractions. The organization of your ideas can provide smooth transition areas, and a better flow of your presentation. Creating a comfortable and open environment can allow you and your audience to relax and be open to new ideas. This helps to omit the risk of being distracted by anxiety or discomfort, enabling your audience to focus on your message rather than the environment.
- Misunderstandings can occur when the message is unclear. This can result in a misinterpretation of your ideas and lead to confusion and possibly negative feedback. Misunderstanding can be detrimental to communication because you may not be able to relate to your audience if you do not understand one another.
- Be careful in your speech by being articulate and using vocabulary well suited for your audience. The use of visual aids or diagrams to help present your ideas can also help keep your message in context. This requires that you pay attention to details when communicating in a formal versus an informal environment. Another strategy that may be useful is gaining a certain level of understanding about your audience before even approaching them with your ideas, allowing you to influence the situation prior to your delivery.
Hesitation and uncertainty
- Hesitation and uncertainty can occur when you are not confident in what you are communicating. If you do not believe in your message, your audience probably will not accept it. Being unattached can cause your audience to become uninterested, prompting negative feedback.
- These barriers can be avoided by preparing your ideas beforehand. If you have a plan of action, you will be less likely to get off track or discouraged. Create a plan that you are confident with and execute it. Your confidence will show in your presentation, enticing your audience. Displaying a certain level of enthusiasm in your communication can help you to hold the interest of your audience, while sparking their curiosity. Creating a connection between you, your audience, and your ideas, allows for some trust and your audience will become more receptive.
Though overcoming communication barriers may seem like a difficult task, it can be done with the right approach. You need to do what it takes to overcome them and enjoy the privileges of being a good communicator.