Types of Communication Barriers and How to Overcome them

To be able to communicate effectively, it is not enough if we only understand the factors that influence the effectiveness of communication. It also requires an understanding of the barriers to communication that exist.

These communication barriers can occur, either between individuals or between people, and can also occur within organizations. So, what are the kinds of communication barriers? The following explanation.

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Barriers to communication between humans

Communication between humans is done by a communicator (or the person who conveys the message) with the communicant (the person who receives the message). Now, for communicators and communicants to understand each other, both must have the same understanding of words, tone of voice, gestures or gestures, and symbols used in communication.

However, there are times when communication between individuals also experiences obstacles. Barriers to communication between humans that may occur, in the form of:

Differences in perception and language

Perception is a personal interpretation of a certain thing. Because this perception comes from the interpretation of each individual, then maybe one person with another can define or interpret a word in a different way.

Poor hearing

Being a good listener is apparently not an easy thing. Although we have understood the good way of listening, there are times when our hearing becomes bad. Poor hearing does not have to be due to hearing loss in the ear. Bad hearing can happen when we are daydreaming or tired because we are thinking about other problems. Usually, in such conditions, someone will lose interest in listening.

Emotional disturbance

Emotion is something that really influences the overall condition of the individual. That is, when someone is feeling angry, sad, disappointed, afraid or other emotions, then he can have difficulty composing messages and receive messages properly. Even so, it is also difficult to avoid communication when we are in an emotional state. As a result, misunderstandings often occur because of this emotional disturbance.

Cultural differences

At times, we also need to communicate with other people of different cultures. With cultural differences, the communication patterns that occur will also be different. This has become the most difficult communication barrier to overcome.

Physical impairment

Often, physical disruption can interfere with the ongoing communication process. This physical disturbance can be in the form of bad acoustics, illegible writing, low light, health problems and others. Various physical disturbances in communication can result in impaired concentration in communication.

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Communication Barriers in Organizations

Within an organization, communication is also a very important and often done thing. However, often communication within these organizations also experiences obstacles due to various things. Whether it’s because the material delivered is too complicated, the amount is large, and because the material is controversial.

In addition to these, communication barriers in the most frequently encountered organizations include:

Information overload and competing messages

Technology that continues to develop causes the number of messages in an organization also increased dramatically and more rapidly. An organization is often inundated with various messages by post, e-mail , telephone and various other sources. Each of them asked for early attention.

This is what can cause messages to be blocked, not responded, deemed unimportant or the response given to be inaccurate.

Improper filtering

When we forward messages to other people in an organization, filtering is usually done by cutting or abbreviating messages. The message in this organization is often through various filters. Starting from the doorman, employees in the front office, secretaries to the leadership. Therefore, the message delivered may not arrive in full because there are parts of the message that are cut or discarded.

The communication climate is closed or inadequate

Effective communication, one of which has a characteristic that is the existence of free and open exchange of information. However, sometimes there are also organizations that implement a closed management style.

This style of closed management often impedes the exchange of available information. In addition, too many channels in this communication also have the potential to change messages as they move, both vertically and horizontally within an organization.

Kind of communication breakdown in general

If viewed in general terms, these communication barriers can basically be grouped into seven types of disturbances and obstacles. Types of communication disorders according to Cangara, 2004, 131, namely:

1. Technical failure

These technical problems such as interruptions that occur on the telephone network, radio channels, internet access, damage to communication equipment and others.

2. Semantic disorders

Semantic interference is caused by errors in the language used in communication. For example, if the words used are too many to use foreign jargon that is not understood, use a different language, or use language structures that are not as they should.

3. Psychological disorders

This psychological disorder is an obstacle that occurs because there are problems in the individual. For example, such as a sense of disappointment, distrust, a grieving situation or the presence of certain psychiatric disorders.

4. Physical or organic obstacles

Physical or organic obstacles are obstacles that occur because of geographical location. For example, due to long distances so difficult to reach communication and transportation tools.

5. Status barriers

These status barriers occur because of differences in social status and seniority. Examples that can occur such as between the king and the people, between superiors and subordinates, and between lecturers and students.

6. Barriers to mindset

These mindset barriers are communication barriers that can occur due to differences in mindset. This difference in mindset can be caused by different experiences and educational backgrounds.

7. Cultural barriers

Cultural barriers are a form of communication barriers caused by differences in norms, habits and values ​​held by individuals.

How to Overcome Communication Barriers and Improve Communication

Various communication barriers that occur, can also be overcome and corrected. To be able to overcome and improve existing communication so that more effective communication is created, there are several ways that can be done. How to overcome communication barriers according to Bovee and Thill, 2002, 22, are:

  • Maintaining a communication climate that is always open
  • Determined to uphold ethics in communicating and running well
  • Understanding the difficulties of communication between cultures
  • Use a communication approach that is centered on the recipient of the message.
  • Use existing technology wisely and responsibly in order to obtain and share information properly and effectively.
  • Create and process messages effectively and efficiently. This can be done in several ways, namely: understanding the recipient of the message, adjusting the message with the recipient, reducing the number of messages, choosing the right channel or media, improving communication skills
by Abdullah Sam
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