Monday, 8 December 2014

Define barriers to effective communication and essentials of effective communication


Effective communication means a communication where an understanding is established between sender and receiver, where the message arouses in the receiver’s mind the response desired by the sender. In effective communication, the message ‘gets through’ to the communicate, and its meaning is very similar to that of the
It is difficult to achieve effective communication, in fact, it is really impossible, because many barriers exist to disrupt or frustrate communication. Most common barriers to effective communication are:
1. Physical Barriers
2. Psychological Barriers
3. Noise

1. Physical Barriers :

If the voice of the speaker is not audible to the audience, communication will fail. If the print of some text or paragraph is not visible, message will not work. These are physical barriers to communication. Screen distortion on television, hums-in public-address system, coughing or laughing by members of an audience, are also the examples of physical barriers. In printed form, physical barriers would be poor printing that results
in illegibility, lines of type missing or upside down, torn pages, missing paragraphs, story continuations to other pages or muddy or wet pages.
On the other hand, one’s own disabilities like weak eye-sights, low audibility or colour blindness, can also cause failure in the communication.

How to Overcome these Barriers?
We usually try to overcome these physical barriers through mechanical ways. But many times mechanical faults can also cause the failure of communication. Some disturbance in the tubes of a television set or fault of a plate in the printing machine or weather conditions disturbing the Radio waves can become a barrier.

2. Psychological Barriers :

There are many psychological barriers to communication, which we face in our daily life.
(i) Attention :
One’s attention towards message is must for the success of any communication. If the person we want to communicate with, is not mentally attentive to our message, communication will fail. People are usually in a habit to pay selective attention to different messages. That situation would reduce the chance of effective communication.
(ii) Language :
Language is the most important tool of human communication. If it is difficult, strange and above the level of the receiver, the message will not get across. Language should be easy the kind we use in daily life.
(iii) Field of Experience :
If the field of experience of communicator and audience is not the same, there will be a great psychological barrier. The communicator should send the message to receiver according to his/her frame of reference.
(iv) Religion :
If the message is against the religious beliefs of the receiver, it will not be accepted.
(v) Social and Cultural Norms :
If the message does not fit into the social and cultural norms of the receiver, it will not be accepted.

3. Noise :

There is a noise everywhere around us. Psychologically anything Creating negative effects on communication by taking our attention away from the message is a noise. Noise may be of channel and it may be semantic.
(i) Channel Noise :
A term is used to describe anything that interferes with the fidelity of the physical transmission of the message (such as static on Radio or type too small to be read easily). But broadly speaking, channel noise may be thought of as including all distraction between source and audience. The professional communicator helps to overcome its effects by attention-getting devices and by careful use of the principle of redundancy.
(ii) Semantic Noise :
Semantic noise is interference within the communication process itself, within the human sources and receivers of the Communication. In mass communication, this type of interference is inevitable, only because audiences, individually and collectively, have so many different expectations of their mass media. Semantic noise occurs whenever the audiences do not appear to be receiving and responding to carefully crafted messages the way the sender had hoped.

Other Barriers to Communication :
Some of other barriers that tend to hinder or disrupt effective communication are as follows:
(1)  Difference in IQ. level.
(ii)  Mental and physical stress at the time of communication.
(iii)  Different backgrounds of the participants.
(iv)  Difference in education, formal and informal.
(v)   Difference in such factors as sex, age, class and race.
(vi)  Difference in interest in the message.
(vii)  Lack of mutual respect among participants.
(viii) Environmental conditions at the time of communication.
(ix)   Little or no chance of feedback.
(x)    Lack of skill on part of communicator, for example, poor writer or speaker.
(xi)   Lack of skill on part of communicate (poor reader or listener) or lack of information in message.


The main essential for effective communication is to gain the audience. Today we are living in information rich society. There is a bombardment of information and messages which come from radio, television, newspapers and from other mass media.
For effective communication :
a. The message must be so designed and delivered as to gain the attention of the intended destination.
b. The message must employ signs which refer to experience common to source and destination, so as to “get the meaning across.”
No one has the time to listen all the Radio programmes or read all newspapers or watch all television programmes. People are very selective to pick up the information. In this age of competition, it is essential for communicator to construct his message in such a way so that it will hit the target audience. Only then, he would be able to gain the audience. Once the audience are gained and they come in contact with the message second important phase starts, i.e., to hold the attention of audience regularly and continuously.


The first step is to gain the audience and then to hold the audience as to make them a regular customer of communication. Third stage is to influence the audience. This third stage of influencing the thinking and attitude could be achieved only after the audience, attracted and are permanently attentive towards the communicator. For a message to be able to influence, it is essential that it is according to the frame of reference of the audience, it has credibility, it fulfils the personality needs and it has overcome all the physical and psychological barriers before it is transmitted.


chinta 6 December 2017 at 21:39  

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