Sunday, September 28, 2014

“Overcome Your Illusion during Conversation to Ensure Effective Communication” - Professor M.S.Rao

“The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.” – George Bernard Shaw.

Some people don’t communicate openly and it leads to lots of challenges in their personal, professional and social lives. If they communicate openly they can understand others well and gel well with mutual respect, peace and harmony. In fact, most conflicts arise in this world due to lack of proper communication, and empathy. 

You will find various kinds of people by nature such as introverts, extroverts and ambiverts. Whatever their nature may be, people must communicate with others without any inhibitions and hesitations to present their perspectives, ideas and insights. Otherwise, they can be misunderstood.  It is observed that most people assume communication. There is an inner noise within all humans that prevents proper listening and it leads to improper communication. This inner dialogue can be used either for good or bad. It can be used good when people engage their inner dialogue to achieve their goals. They can engage their inner dialogue effectively throughout the day to hone their skills, abilities and knowledge.  It becomes bad when they use it for wrong things due to their negative attitude. Additionally, this inner dialogue becomes noise and prevents from active listening, and it paves the way for ineffective communication, and finally to conflicts.   

Some people don’t understand the difference between information and communication. Sydney J. Harris rightly differentiated, "The two words 'information' and 'communication' are often used interchangeably, but they signify quite different things. Information is giving out; communication is getting through.” At times people don’t want to listen to others due to excessive ego. It leads to miscommunication. When people have pre-occupied notions, they don’t listen to speakers actively, leading to miscommunication. When people don’t listen to others due to adamancy, it complicates communication. When people don’t listen to others due to dyslexia, it leads to ineffective communication. Likewise, there are many reasons for improper communication. Only when people realize the real reasons, they will be able to address them effectively to listen attentively to ensure effective communication. Remember, for effective communication, there must be coordination between the speakers and the listeners.  Edwin H. Friedman once remarked, “The colossal misunderstanding of our time is the assumption that insight will work with people who are unmotivated to change. Communication does not depend on syntax, or eloquence, or rhetoric, or articulation but on the emotional context in which the message is being heard. People can only hear you when they are moving toward you, and they are not likely to when your words are pursuing them. Even the choices words lose their power when they are used to overpower. Attitudes are the real figures of speech.”

Whenever any conflict arises, check whether it was due to poor communication or lack of empathy. These two aspects are in your hands. When you empathize with others, you minimize conflicts; and when you understand the real challenges in communication, you can maintain good relations with others.  Emma Thompson rightly remarked, “Any problem, big or small, within a family, always seems to start with bad communication. Someone isn't listening.”  To conclude, acquire communication skills and exhibit empathy to ensure peace and harmony in your personal, professional and social life.

"Without credible communication, and a lot of it, the hearts and minds of others are never captured." -  John P. Kotter

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Professor M.S.Rao, India
Founder of MSR Leadership Consultants India
Listed in Marquis Who's Who in the World in 2013
21 Success Sutras for Leaders: Top 10 Leadership Books of the Year (San Diego University) Amazon URL: http://www.amazon.com/21-Success-Sutras-Leaders-ebook/dp/B00AK98ELI

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