Effective communication skills are what make us benefit, grow and develop in all spheres of our life, and when it comes to the workplace we can’t just do without a good command over language. Communication, if good, can persuade, convert and motivate. On the other hand, if it is not good and interesting, it can be demotivating and straying. It is important for an organisation to promote and practice effective and healthy communicative habits, so that there is no misunderstanding and miscommunication and the objective is clearly stated. However, there are many factors that can come in the way of a properly set communicative environment and can convolute the matter of conversation. Barriers to communication could cause roadblocks in your professional life and could turn out to be one of the major hurdles in your path towards achieving those professional goals. This article provides you with some of the roadblocks that can curb and affect an effective communicative environment at your workplace.
Roadblocks To Effective Communication
One of the most common of all barriers off communication is the physical barrier, i.e., physically separated large working areas. It can so happen that the management is in a different building and the employees are located in a different building which makes it difficult to communicate regularly and effectively. Another factor contributing to the physical barrier can be background noise and a distractive work environment.
Language, though not a major one, is still a barrier for effective communication, especially when used too casually and without much care or concern for its consequences. With English becoming the means of communication, this barrier has somewhat submerged. But, if in the same language of conversation, certain words or grammar is inappropriately used, it can convey a wrong meaning. Therefore, it is a must for the employees and management to stick to as much accuracy in the language of conversation as is possible.
Human emotions can also prove to be a great barrier in the way of developing an effective communication environment at a workplace. If at the time of the conversation a person is submerged in some emotion, s/he will find it difficult to listen attentively or understand whatever is told to him/her. A person with emotions like anger, hostility, restlessness and fear can neither convey something properly nor listen attentively.
There are certain cultural barriers as well that can come in the way of effective and proper conversation. The age, race, gender, economic position, temperament, religion, popularity, etc. can all play a role in generating differences among employees, hence giving no space to healthy conversation.
When you are mentally disturbed or troubled, you can’t afford to communicate properly to anyone. Undergoing stress related to work in the organisation is a common phenomenon, which makes it difficult for a person to understand the conversation leading to distortion of the communication.
Poor environment of the organisation, inappropriate and ineffective management, stringent rules and regulations and lack of growth and opportunities in the organisation are some of the factors contributing to organisational barriers in the path of communication. These negative aspects in an organisation work adversely on the psychology of an employee who is then demotivated and too disinterested to pay heed to any organised meeting or discussions.
The employee and the employer should share a unique relationship wherein both of them are able to understand and relate to one another in every possible way. However, when an employer or an employee is unable to understand non-verbal communication such as expressions, body language, gestures, eye contact, etc., and when either of them lacks trust and belief in the other, it becomes very difficult for both of them to communicate and put across things in the right spirit. There can also be a lack of motivation, a lack of co-operation, a fear of punishment and poor relations from the employee’s side. All these perceived threats also serve as a barrier for effective conversation.
If the means of the conversation selected is wrong or the length of the conversation is too long, the communication might get interrupted. Conflicts among employees can also lead to poor communication. Lack of interest in the conversation on part of the employees can also lead to a break in the flow of the conversation.
The management can give out feedback and judgments on the performance of the employee till it is healthy and ethical. But, a criticism that is meant to put down the morale of a person is something that can disturb the smoothness of the employee-employer relationship.
Surprising but true, praising can also act as a barrier for effective communication. Too much of appreciation can make employees dependant on these words of praise to want to concentrate on their work and stay focused. If they don’t receive any words of appraisal in the future, they will lack interest and concentration in work.