Universal nonverbal communication
Dealing with Different Communication Styles
Different communication styles exist throughout the workplace and in various organizations. Communication style complexities are created by how we were raised, including our cultures and the level of socialization we received as children. Communication is key to working with people. To have a successful organization, it is important that individuals know how to communicate with one another in various styles and at various levels.
Effective Workplace Communication
Effective workplace communication begins with listening. Listening is the best way for people to determine which issues are important, what problems may exist, and how an individual's leadership skills can assist people. People often do not understand how to listen effectively. Listening requires effort, and many people simply are not willing to put out the amount of effort that is desired to have effective workplace communication. When this occurs, a variety of issues develop.
There are a variety of different listening styles, and each person listens differently. Each culture also has a different style of listening, and people of different backgrounds listen differently to others because of this. In the United States, one of the major differences in listening styles is found between men and women.
A masculine style of listening is one that tends to be analytical and problem-solving. When men listen, they tend to interrupt and offer advice. However, when they do that, women see them as not listening to them completely.
Most women listen enthusiastically and show support for the speaker. Women agree by nodding their heads and listening to the entire situation before offering advice. Women also tend to use listening as a way to network with others.Identifying Communication Challenges There are several obstacles to effective communication and listening. To become a good listener, you have to understand these obstacles:
· Allowing your attitude about the person speaking to influence what you hear. This is often true when you are being affected by that person's background and you tend to anticipate what they are going to say, allowing yourself to make judgments before they are finished speaking.
· Letting your beliefs and attitude toward a topic interfere with what you hear.
· Getting emotionally upset over what is being said and allowing your feelings to affect what you hear negatively.
· Hearing what you expect to hear rather than listening to what is actually being said.
· Listening for literal meanings rather than hidden or underlying meanings.
· Focusing on the delivery and nonverbal communication of the speaker.
· Listening only for facts. This can be dangerous because different cultures may analyze facts differently from you.