People in the world are not exactly alike. Cultures or countries are not the same. These differences, however, can cause problems in conveying your meanings. Each person’s mind is different from others. As a result, message sender’s meanings and the receiver’s response are affected by many factors, such as individual: Semantic barriers Conventions of meaning Physical Barrier Psychological barriers Emotional barriers Perceptual barriers Barriers involving values attitudes etc
Semantic Barrier A basic principle of communication is that the symbols the sender uses to communicate messages must have the same meaning in both the sender’s and receiver’s minds. You can never be sure that the message in your mind will be clearly sent to your receiver. The world is full with errors, as a result of differences in semantic (meaning) understanding. Symbol Referent (reality) Less Common Experience Common Experience Problem in Conventions of Meaning Denotation A denotation is usually the dictionary definition of a word.
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Denotative meanings name objects, people or events without indicating positive or negative qualities. Such words as car, desk, book, house, and water convey denotative meanings. The receiver has a similar understanding of the thing in which the word is used. Denotation A connotation is an implication of a word or a suggestion separate from the usual definition. Some words have connotative meanings, that is, qualitative judgments and personal reactions. The word man is denotative, father, prophet, brother are connotative. Some words have positive connotations in some contexts and negative meanings in others.
For example, slim girl and slim chances. Physical Barriers Communication does not consist of words alone. Another set of barriers is caused by your own physical appearance, your audience, or the context of the document or the presentation. Your ideas, however good and however skillfully imparted, are at the mercy of various potential physical barriers. For Writing For Speaking For Writing There is a whole barrage of possible physical blocks, jammed or jagged margins, fingerprints or smudges, unclear photocopies, unreadable word processor printout, water or coffee, tea spots etc
For Speaking Mumbling, not enunciating, speaking too quickly, noises become of hissing ventilation, blowing air conditioning, ringing telephones, slamming doors etc. Psychological Barriers Because of the changing world, everyone has his own concept of reality. Also, human beings, sensory perceptions – touch, sight, hearing, smell, and taste are limited, and each person’s mental filter is unique. In our daily interaction with others, we make various abstractions, inferences and evaluations of the world around us. Emotional Barriers One possible psychological block is emotional, you may be emotionally block s you are announcing a new policy you may become popular or unpopular First mayor presentation Writing someone you dislike Other may feel hostile Perception of Reality The perceptual problem is that people think differently Abstracting Selecting some details and omitting others is a process called abstracting. On many occasions abstracting is necessary. However, you should be cautious about “slanted” statements. Differences in abstracting take place not only when persons describe events but also when they describe people and objects.
Slanting is unfair in factual reporting. When presenting some particular facts, you include your own biased ideas into it, you make slanting statement. Try not to let personal preferences affect your factual reporting of information. Perception of Reality Inferring Conclusions made by reasoning from evidence are called inferences. We make assumptions and draw conclusions even though we are not able to immediately verify the evidence. Some inferences are both necessary and desirable; others are risky, even dangerous.
Necessary Inferences When we reach a foreign country, we are sure that we will be treated politely. When we post a letter, we infer that it will reach its destination. Conclusions we make about things we have not observed directly can often be against our wishes. Barriers Involving Values, Attitudes etc. Both personality and attitude are complex cognitive process. The difference is that personality usually is thought of as the whole person whereas attitude may makeup the personality. The term attitude describes people and explains their behavior.
More precisely an attitude can be defined as a persistent tendency to feel and behave in a particular way towards some object. For example: Name does not like night shift, so his attitude is negative towards his work assignment. A receiver’s attitude toward a message can determine whether it is accepted or rejected. The effectiveness is influenced also by the values, attitudes, and opinions of the communicators. People react favorably when they receive agreeable message. Receivers’ views of the information will affect their response.
This response could be what the sender desires or just the opposite. Occasionally people react according to their attitudes toward a situation rather than to the facts. Barriers Involving Values, Attitudes etc. Closed Mind Some people hold rigid views on certain subjects. They maintain their rigid views regardless of the circumstances. Such a closed minded person is very difficult to communicate to. Sender’s Credibility Other factors effecting attitudes, opinions and responses Environmental stresses Personal problems Sensitivity