Impactof Barriers to Communication and Strategies to overcome them
Impactof Barriers to Communication
Effectivecommunication is one of the most critical aspects of the success ofany business organization. This is particularly critical to smallerorganizations that mostly rely on the effectiveness of smallerworkforces that are central in bringing about positive results.Barriers to communication affect the bottom-up, top-down andhorizontal communication, which are critical to the success of anorganization. If these communication processes are ineffective, theorganization fails to achieve its objectives, strategies, functionsand operations. As a result, a firm fails to meet the goals andobjectives of its establishment as a business organization (Hogan,2006, p. 85). There are several significant impacts that anorganization experiences as a result of communication barriers. Thispaper will discuss and evaluate how barriers to communication impactsupon an individual and a team when meeting organizational goals andobjectives. The discussion will consider the strategies available inorganizations to assist in overcoming communication barriers.
CommunicationBarriers impacts on Working Relationships
Inactionis one major impact communication barriers, where employees generallyfail to deliver on their specific functions mainly the requesteddirectives. According to several studies conducted by bettercommunication results, a weak message conveyed to one of therecipients of that particularly flawed message is likely to make himor her to fail to take the necessary expected action that is criticalto the operations of that organization (Hogan, 2006, p. 86). Such aweak reception of messages mainly is evidence that the receiver isnot sure about the request and thus is uncertain about reacting to it(Locker, 2010). Therefore, it can also mean that the sender of thatparticular message failed the organization by failing to present thatmessage in a manner that is likely to motivate the receiver of themessage to take the necessary next action upon receiving. As aresult, the receiver fails to perform as to the expectation of themanagement of that organization.
Communicationbarriers also result in high levels of misinterpretation of messagesin both larger and smaller organizations. This mostly stems from verypoor communication efforts of that are mostly evident from thatparticular sender of the message. Most companies experience thisimpact of communication barrier from the difference in languages andcommunication which is high risk in most companies, among theemployees (Hogan, 2006, p. 86). As many companies opt to become morediversified by having different and diverse cultures, there is a highlikelihood of misinterpretations of messages due to communicationbarriers. Additionally, this is also likely to happen from the typeof unfavorable working environment that is characterized by noises orother forms of distractions that all lead to employee confusionduring the process of reception of company messages that will lead tomisinterpretation.
Communicationbarriers can also lead to poor working relationships betweenemployees working in the same organization. Several communicationbarriers are likely to spur conflicts and disengaged types ofrelationships between employees, the supervisors and thesubordinates, or between top management and the employees (Hogan,2006, p. 87). However, it is important to understand that thisparticular barrier of communication is tied to negative effects,which are mostly emotional feelings. When a particular workingenvironment depends on an overly emotional state of mind of one, afew or several employees, there is high possibility that this willimpact significantly the way those individuals will work together.For instance, if the supervisor in most instances projects negativeemotions towards the other employees that he is supervising, islikely to overwhelm their ability to function effectively. This inturn is likely to lead to emotional outbursts of those particularworkers and hence, the development of a hostile working environment.
Inaddition, communication barriers can lead to lack of proper workingknowledge that is essential to the delivery of expected results in anorganization. Communication barriers, as well as unstructuredorganization coupled with other forms of barriers are likely to leadto a situation where employees generally lack the knowledge about thecompany, its products, services or even their job descriptions(Hogan, 2006, p. 87). This working environment can impact the companyin many ways that all lead to losses due to poor delivery of resultsby employees. Moreover, this type of environment is ideal forineffective creativity by employees in improving the company and itscore functions. It can also generally lead to ineffective results aswell as poor communication during interactions with company clientsor customers (Locker, 2010). In this regard, it is the responsibilityof top management to ensure that every employee has the knowledge ofhis or her job in the company.
CommunicationBarriers impacts organizational structure
Communicationbarrier can lead to misinformation or misinterpretation of theorganization’s vision and mission to the general employees (Hogan,2006, p. 87). One of the greatest impacts of communication barrier isthe possibility of the company not being able to rely on its realmission and vision to the employees. One of the many characteristicsof such communication barrier is possessing weak language skills thatare likely to confuse the intended messages (Bevan & Sole, 2014).These weak skills can be heightened by individuals or top managementusing different words to mean the same thing or the evident physicaldistractions that may inhibit the free flow of information that isclear and understandable to the working environment.
Anyimpediment or breakdown that is associated with the relaying ofinformation with any organization results to communication barriers.These types of communication barriers can occur at any time betweenthe structural systems or workforce of an organization (Kutz, 2013,p. 102). A good example to this effect is mistrust between a managerand his or her subordinate stuff. This type of environment is likelyto result in inhibition of free flowing of essential informationthereby creating or developing differing expectations andmisunderstanding between the general workforces of that particularorganization. Communication barriers are also more likely to provetangible, a good example is an antiquated type of ordering systemthat exists in an organization and mostly fails to update deliveriesin real time (Kutz, 2013, p. 103). This type of communication barrieris more likely to prevent a streamlined communication system betweendifferent departments within that particular organization and willultimately lead to poor results in meeting the organizational goals.
CommunicationBarriers impacts on the Customer Service
Communicationbarrier can impact customer service, which is an important divisionin any organization (Hogan, 2006, p. 88). Communication barriers leadto ineffective communication service to the customers. This is likelyto have devastating impacts to the general customer division in waysthat can result to huge losses in an organization. Some of thecommunication barriers that are likely to be evident in thisparticular division may include rude employees, dismissive employees,failure to rely on order information and poor customer services suchas the ordering techniques to the appropriate parties such as thedelivery division (Hogan, 2006, p. 88).
Sucha communication chain that can be impacted significantly in suchinstances is the warehouse team and the accounting team, poorcommunication between these two groups can result to customerdissatisfaction. Overseeing such communication barriers depends onthe proper decoding of customer information successfully. It isimportant to understand that there is a high likelihood of gapsoccurring when erroneous assumptions are made by the employees on thecustomer decoding system (Bevan & Sole, 2014). One good exampleis when organizational clients assume that a particular package willarrive within a week when in real fact the organizationalrepresentation knows that the delivery period is normally two weeksand fails to communicate this important information to the client.This communication barrier is likely to bring about customerfrustrations and dissatisfaction.
CommunicationBarriers and the Production process
Communicationbarriers negatively impact the production processes significantlywith any organization. There are two major types of communicationformal and informal communication (Hogan, 2006, p. 88). When thesetwo types of communications are negative, the production systems ofthe organization are typically affected. However, it is important tounderstand that formal communication system’s main goal is toexplain the organizational directives or explain the organizationaltraining manuals to the employees.
Onthe other hand informal communication relates to existing rumors onpossibilities of information that may or may not be true. Thisdamaging information is nonetheless filtered through employees whohave in most cases had reactionary feedback towards it (Hogan, 2006,p. 88). Therefore, this type of communication barrier can causeineffective production system or even halt work flow betweenemployees. This is likely true to happen when informal information ispassed between employees on the possibility of losing their jobs.However, such information is failed to be communicated by the topmanagement and a result, employees end up having fears that typicallytransform into disinterest or apathy.
Overcomingthe Barriers to Communication
Communicationbarriers can be overcome by adopting the use of simple languagesduring communication as opposed to having complex use of languagesthat is likely to lead to misinterpretation (Kutz, 2013, p. 104).This is particularly important when the organization’s top levelattempts to have regular meetings with the subordinate and all levelsof workforces that are significant to the organization. Thiseffective communication is important because all groups presentduring such meetings have active listening skills and there is freeflow of information and feedback is appreciated from all departments.
Thenegative impact of miscommunication can be overcome by having manyand wide company meetings that are aimed at infusing employee’sorientation with the company’s goals, mission and general vision(Kutz, 2013, p. 102). These meetings should be accommodative andengaging to all group members with a clear welcome of diversefeedback from all corners of the organizational chart. This in turnwill ensure that the employees are generally satisfied with theorganizational communication goals. This is because having employeeswho are generally disinterested with the overall company success as aresult of poor communication, will have a high likelihood of pursuingother work opportunities instead of grooming their skills to meetcompany’s mission and vision.
Moreover,communication barrier is less likely to happen when an organizationadopts a simple organizational structure (Kutz, 2013, p. 104). Thisis an important way of getting rid of sometimes complexorganizational structures that are characterized by complexhierarchical levels that are mostly not optimum. By adopting a simpleorganizational structure, an organization becomes more effectivethrough easy control and accessing of important information from alllevels of operating systems. This type of system is easy to controland avert any possibilities of having communication barriers.
Itis also important for the managers or supervisors to be havingmanageable jobs that is not necessarily overwhelming to themselves orto their subordinates (Kutz, 2013, p. 105). This ensures that theyhave ample quality time to spend with the subordinates and listeningto any ensuring queries that may impact their function. Active andeffective feedback between these two levels of an organization is animportant contribution to the production of impressive results ingeneral. In addition, this process proves more effective if bothlevels of organization avoid negative feedback that may disengagetheir working relationships.
Bevan,J. L., & Sole, K. (2014). Makingconnections: Understanding interpersonal communication (2nd ed.).San Diego, CA: Bridgepoint Education, Inc.
Hogan,K., 2006. Can’tGet Through: Barriers to communication.New York: Routledge.
Kutz,K. 2013. Barriersto Cross Cultural Communication.Hagen: University of Sudwestfalen
Locker,K. O. (2010). Businessand administrative communication.USA: McGraw Hill