Most people think they are communicating, when in actuality, they are not getting their message across. Yes, they are sending messages; however, much is lost within the communication process, which comprises more than 90% of the message being sent!
The receiver may be thinking what the right answer would be for your question; they may be thinking about something that just happened that they cannot get of their heads, or their feelings and emotions are being compromised from hearing the communication.
By the time your message is sent and the time your message is received, a lot happens with your message. The person hears the message and decodes it, giving their interpretation to it.
In business and in relationships, we want a message to be heard and effective if we are to proceed with a good communication between two parties. Through this book,, The Communication Handbook, my hope is that you obtain the necessary knowledge to use language correctly and to know the many variances of the language process.
Everywhere we go, there seems to be signals of some kind. There are signs, logos, labels, photographs, newspapers mobile devices and computer screens. The signs are so common that we get used to them and instinctively know what they mean. These signals have become important to our way of life.
People interpret what they want to interpret. They hear what they choose.
In the book, Words That Work, Frank L. Luntz says,
“It’s not what you say, and it’s what people hear.” He goes on to say “You can have the best message in the world, but the person on the receiving end will always understand it through the prism of his or her own emotions preconceptions, prejudices and preexisting beliefs.”
In today’s world of social networking, texting, tweets and Facebook posts, along with electronic forms of communication words can easily be misunderstood and misinterpreted.
People want immediate gratification when they send a message. When people used to write letters, (what a concept!) they had to wait for a response. Today, you reach contacts, worldwide, in seconds. We are in an era with “real time.”) Businesses now send messages via office email quickly and efficiently.
In the book, Multiple Intelligences by Howard Gardner, he said that
“We. now have the opportunity to go beyond stated expectations and explore specific interests. Since sending and receiving messages immediately is so beneficial, we seem to have lost the ability to use more archaic forms of communication. No longer do your children call every week; they text. Everything has moved in a direction of I need information right now. It concerns me we are losing the opportunity to communicate in-person or over a landline, in lieu of technological advances.”
The majority of the population is born with an ability to hear, but not necessarily, to listen. There are several reasons people do not or cannot listen or remember. These range from physical conditions to cultural beliefs.
During one of the classes, required to get my Ph.D., an instructor gave his view on the word ‘understand.’ In his words, “The word ‘understand’ is just a clever reversal of ‘stand under’ and has been suggested to mean just that: to stand under.” If you ‘stand under’ someone and look up to them you will better understand what they are going through and why your communication may not be getting across.
Edward R. Murrow said,
“Communication’ is the process of exchanging information and ideas. An active process, it involves encoding, transmitting, and decoding intended messages. There are many means of communicating and many different language systems. Speech and language is only a portion of communication.
Other aspects of communication may enhance or even eclipse the linguistic code. These aspects are paralinguistic, nonlinguistic, and linguistic.
It is the transmission of information so that the recipient understands what the sender intends.”
Just because we send a message doesn’t mean the receiver hears what you intended them to hear because somewhere in-between the sender and the receiver are the thought processes, feelings and interpretations of the receiver. The receiver must be open to receiving the senders’ message.
For example, when you see a yellow sign with a curved arrow along the road, you know there is a curve ahead. When you see a plus sign, you know you are to add. When you see a red light, you know to stop.
The key to the use of signals in communication knows that both the sender and receiver of the message must understand the communication! Let’s say, you were given a math problem, but you did not know the minus sign is the signal for subtraction, you would not be able to complete the problem.
When people used to write letters, (what a concept!) they had to wait until the receiver gets the communication.
Thus, The Communication Handbook is about the communication process and all that it entails.
Watch on Amazon for The Communication Handbook (March, 2013). Everyone needs this book in order to communicate effectively.